Searching for a solution to the growing second base logjam

What solution will the Mets find for their second base logjam?
New York Mets v Washington Nationals
New York Mets v Washington Nationals / Rob Carr/GettyImages

Luisangel Acuna isn’t destined to become the Brent Gretzky of baseball. Maybe he never becomes his brother, however, the hype seems to at least have him becoming something closer to the Seth Curry to Ronald’s Steph. Touted as the top New York Mets prospect in many places, he’s a guy many are excited to see shuttle through the farm system and to the major leagues.

There’s a small hiccup. Francisco Lindor isn’t going anywhere. At second base, the team already has Jeff McNeil and now with the debut of Ronny Mauricio, another viable long-term option. McNeil is easy to move to another position on a nearly nightly basis. Perhaps Mauricio can also rove around a little more often. 

However, having too many players in platoon-like situations gets chaotic. It limits playing time. Hot bats can get cold simply because the matchups on paper tell the manager to rest a guy simply because the first hand he grabbed a rattle with as an infant was his left.

Where should the NY Mets plan to play Luisangel Acuna with Ronny Mauricio around?

Most of Acuna’s experience has come as a shortstop where he continues to get the majority of his innings with Binghamton. He has played a few games at second base and with Double-A Frisco this year he even logged 4 games in center field.

An increasingly tight list of options for the Mets is a good problem to have. After all, the thought of “Will Brett Baty or Mark Vientos become the future third baseman for the Mets?” has now turned into “Are either capable of playing the position at a major league level?”

Third base is where the Mets can find their best solution. Moving Mauricio there opens up second base for Acuna. It does shift Baty and Vientos—more so the former—away to a new position. 

It’s at this point when the game of musical chairs doesn’t have too many more seats left. If we’re keeping everyone, somebody needs to sit. The DH spot is perfect to get someone’s bat into the lineup, but room will run out quickly in a lineup of nine.

The Mets can start subtracting some pieces. Do they see McNeil as less important to their future now with so many younger players? With a lot of uncertainty about his defense, can they really afford to keep Vientos around without the offensive numbers to justify regular DH at-bats?

Then there’s that one final possibility where the Mets stop moving everyone around and instead make a choice. Mauricio has long been thought of as a trade piece because of the presence of Lindor. A change in position seemed inevitable if he was going to remain with the organization. The same thing is now happening with Acuna whose second spot is now occupied by a rookie. Trading either a hot-hitting young player like Mauricio with power or the promising future Acuna has ahead of him is an easy solution. Using either to acquire a major league starting pitcher they can hold onto for a couple of seasons would be the dream move to make.