Let’s cool down. The New York Mets trade with the San Francisco Giants wasn’t the worst the franchise has ever made. Not even close. But it wasn’t the kind of trade we expected them to make.
J.D. Davis and three more minor leaguers for Darin Ruf doesn’t move the needle. If nothing else, it confirms the Mets have no interest in promoting Mark Vientos to the big league roster until at least September when the rosters expand.
The trouble with going from Davis to Ruf is roster flexibility. Davis could have been sent to the minors without having to be DFA’d. Ruf, Daniel Vogelbach, and Tyler Naquin are all out of minor league options. It’s going to take an injury or a Luis Guillorme demotion to bring up Vientos or any other prospect.
The Mets aren’t interested in promoting Mark Vientos
A .267/.351/.524 hitter at Triple-A this season with 19 home runs, Vientos would have been the next logical choice for the Mets to call up and hand at-bats as a DH. Instead, they’ve added to the roster with trades for three players without options.
Hey, it’s not the worst thing. Vogelbach is a Dominic Smith upgrade. Naquin replaced Travis Jankowski. Now Ruf takes over for Davis.
The Mets bench is very specialized right now with Vogelbach and Naquin only quality hitters versus right-handed pitchers and Ruf likely to only ever start against a lefty. It’s as strict of a platoon as it can get. Things can work but everything seems to need to go right.
Vientos, meanwhile, sits in Triple-A hitting well with very minimal chance of seeing major league action until at least the two additional roster spots return in September. By then, we should know if the Mets plan of adding role players has worked or not.
It’s not fair to consider this similar to what the Atlanta Braves did last summer. Their pickups of Joc Pederson, Eddie Rosario, Jorge Soler, and Adam Duvall were much better. They were capable of starting and had far better resumes than any of the three guys the Mets have picked up thus far. It was a superior plan with better players.
The Mets won’t be calling upon rookies to help them win a pennant this year like they did in 2015. Will it work? We’ll have to hope experience is better than youth.