The best built teams in baseball face significant roster challenges. Nobody is immune to it. The 2024 New York Mets certainly don’t look built to speed their way to a championship either. A roster filled with some risky additions and returning players, challenges aplenty are on the way.
These three challenging roster questions could pop up sooner than we’d like. The solution isn’t so straightforward.
1) What’s the best situation at third base if Brett Baty struggles?
Third base was supposed to be a bit more open to start the season. Then came the ACL injury to Ronny Mauricio. A big wrench thrown into the team’s plan of letting the kids battle it out, Brett Baty now appears to be unchallenged.
Sure, Mark Vientos can surprise us all and look more capable of playing the position in the spring. Joey Wendle, as defensively gifted as he is, might not have the level of production at the plate to justify keeping him in the lineup over Baty.
The problem with Baty is nothing went right for him in 2023. His bat didn’t do nearly enough to keep him in the majors for the full season. When he returned after a temporary demotion, he picked up where he left off in the worst way possible.
So what happens if it’s more of the same from Baty? Do the Mets let Vientos man the position and see him cost them with his defense? Or do they move Wendle to the hot corner and suffer with a .200 batting average at the position yet again?
This coming year is a big one for Baty personally and for the team at the position. None of the backup plans look particularly satisfying.