The Makeshift Lineup

February 28, 2010

I have already written about my displeasure in the Mets’ decision to not move Carlos Beltran this off-season.  It is for this reason that we are discussing lineup options geared towards filling holes rather than writing something in that is strong and steady.  This was the Met brain trust at work once again.  I suppose you might call it the opposite of strong and steady.

Regardless of how you feel about this, we must now deal with what Jerry Manuel will have to pencil in on a day-to-day basis, even if it is far less than optimal.  I break this down into ideal versus inevitable lineups.  The ideal lineup lists where each player would most likely fall in a traditional batting order.  The ideal lineup will also be an incomplete one, as the Mets do not currently have players to fill all of the traditional holes that a batting order constitutes.  The inevitable lineup is the best case scenario for the Mets in order to actually plug all the holes needed to complete the batting order.  Let us begin with what is inevitable.  In parenthasis you will see the batting order slot that the player truly belongs in.

Inevitable Lineup:

1) Angel Pagan (bench/fourth outfielder)

2) Luis Castillo (8)

3) Jose Reyes (1)

4) David Wright (5)

5) Jason Bay (5)

6) Daniel Murphy (2)

7) Jeff Francoeur (7)

8) Rod Barajas (8)

9) Pitcher (9)

As you can plainly see, the Mets have players batting out of their ideal positions.  This is particularly true for Jose Reyes, whose capabilities project very well as a leadoff hitter because of his speed and the intangibles he brings to the game.  He does not fit the profile of a third place hitter very well, as that slot is defined as a team’s most patient, intelligent, and fundamentally sound hitter.  It usually is held down by someone who has a great eye for pitch recognition, and that with this selectivity, can fight off tough two-strike pitches before he eventually capitalizes on a mistake pitch.  I think that it is safe to say that Jose Reyes is not this type of hitter.  Would anyone argue with me?

The problem is that we do not actually have a hitter of this ilk on the roster, and that poses a large problem.  Who is the one guy that pitchers dread to face in a big spot?  Still thinking?  Believe me, you will be sitting there for a while until you eventually settle on someone who you know is not worthy.

If you sum it up, the Mets have one leadoff hitter, one potential 2nd place hitter, two fifth place hitters, one seventh place hitter, and two eighth place hitters.  Look below to see what the ideal lineup would entail.

1) Jose Reyes

2) Daniel Murphy

3) Player not on team

4) Player not on team

5) David Wright/Jason Bay

6) Player not on team

7) Jeff Francoeur

8) Rod Barajas/Luis Castillo

9) Pitcher

You can see my point.  Yes, I understand that not every team is the New York Yankees or the Boston Red Sox (even though we exceed one of the two in payroll…rapping head against the table).  I also realize that I have excluded Carlos Beltran, but that is what I do to players that are often injured….I pretend that they do not exist.  What other responsible thing can I do?

Jerry Manuel will have a tough time filling in his daily lineup card with the troops he has in his dugout.

The main point is this.  Not having a true number three or number four hitter on the Met roster makes it utterly impossible for me to have much confidence in the 2010 perspective lineup.


17 Responses to “The Makeshift Lineup”

  1. Hi, On the subject of the Mets lineup, I just read this evaluation of OF J. Francoeur in the brand new Baseball Prospectus, which I found at Barnes and Noble this morning. He is “an out machine with a good arm.” In short, they expect him to regress back to what he was in his last couple of seasons with the Braves. As for Jason Bay, I wrote a blog-post about him this past December 31st, “Keeping the Wolves at Bay.” In general, I don’t think signing Bay was a great idea. I explain why in my blog (

  2. Mike Says:

    Nice analysis, Dave. I’ve never seen the batting order broken down in that way. You make a strong point.

  3. “I also realize that I have excluded Carlos Beltran, but that is what I do to players that are often injured….I pretend that they do not exist.”

    In 5 season with the Mets the most games Beltran could possibly play in if he never missed a game is 810.

    He has actually played in a total of 677.

    That is 133 less games that averaged over 5 seasons comes out to 26.6 games a season he has missed.

    I don’t know about you but 135.4 games played seems reasonable especially when 81 of those 133 games he missed came in one season 2009.

    In fact before 2009 Beltran in 4 years had only missed a total of 52 games that over 4 years came out to 13 games a season that he missed or 149 games played a season whatever suits you best.

    If your going to do a blog a word of advice if you want to be credible be sure you can back up your comments like “often injured”.

  4. I think Dave’s point is that, coming off of a serious knee injury as he heads into his age 33 season, Beltran’s future production level at this point is anyone’s guess. Therefore, slotting him into a hypothetical lineup slot serves no purpose at this time. Obviously, if he turns out to be healthy, that will be a big boost to the Mets chances.

  5. “Be man enough to own your own comments.” (?!) I was trying to be civilized here, but I guess people from North Jersey don’t understand that, so… Stop being such an asshole and get a life, dip-shit. It figures you’re from North Jersey, more assholes per square inch than exist in the rest of the Continental U.S. combined. I’m surprised I was even able to decipher your sentences. Moron.

  6. Wow all that just for a “own your own comments” remark?

    Don’t worry “Lil Willie” I’ll remember to tread carefully around your delicate nature.

    Dave, getting back to the subject I’m sure you don’t need kids to speak for you. If you feel that your “often injured” comment was meant to say something other than what it is (a comment regarding Beltran’s past) I’m sure you can speak for yourself.

    If you want to talk Mets baseball your welcome to hit our blog over at

  7. LOL I see you have a lil bubble enjoy.

  8. CaseStreet Says:

    Have you heard of David Wright? He’s consistently been one of the top hitters when it comes to OPS. He gets on base and drives in runs.
    How many teams can say they have a 3-5 similar to Wright, Beltran and Bay? Not many.

    Did I miss where you explained what is ideal at each position?

    BTW, Beltran has a full no trade clause and good luck trying to get back at least one player that will come close to his ability.

    • dkresh1 Says:

      I enjoy all of the banter. I ususally try not to chime in and let the readers do their thing. After all, that is what this all about. I started this blog because I felt strongly enough about my own opinion on the Mets that I figured it would be fun to do this. In the end, it has, and I love doing what I do. The comment section is also great, because people have different points of view, and that is what blogging is all about. It is also extremely acceptable for people to disagree with me. I am not looking for a group of pom-pom holders here. I hope everyone understands that. My opinions are what they are, and no one can change them. I am obviously disappointed in where the Mets are today as a franchise, and you will therefore have to hear me rant about it.

      Ultimately, what is acceptable is if people agree to disagree. However, rude comments will not be tolerated here, and I will remove them if necessary. I am a man who has been a fan since the late 1970’s, and as I approach my 40th birthday, I have no time for immaturity. We are all adults, so let’s keep the venom in check if at all possible. We are all fans of the same team here, so let’s just try to be mature about it and get along. Thanks.

  9. TRS86 Says:

    Wow that’s some drivel there. Starting with the idea of trading an injured Beltran during the offseason to the idea that he is oft injured. Not to mention the fact that you for some reason think that a lineup that had Reyes, Wright, and Bay in the middle would be feared by almost every pitcher in the league. Add Beltran to that group in May and we will have a very good offense. I guess based on your title of the blog I should know what to expect. Blatant misinformation based on media stereotypes. Wow.

  10. TRS86 Says:

    Hey look my comment is in moderation. Where have I seen this type of atmosphere before?

  11. Totally love New York Mets – despite recent news:-)

  12. […] recent shortcomings.  My only response to this is…Why?  The Met roster has obvious shortcomings that have been well documented.  Was anyone really measuring that home winning streak, as […]

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