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Positives Outweigh Risk in Bay Deal



By Mike Silva ~ December 30th, 2009. Filed under: Mike Silva, New York Mets.

So “Bay Watch” finally ended yesterday with Mike Francesa breaking the story about Jason Bay signing with the Mets. This really isn’t a surprise to anyone here at NYBD, as we have been saying all offseason that Omar Minaya wanted a big bat. Matt Holliday was the target, but it turns out Jason Bay was less expensive. With that said, there have been reports that Omar Minaya preferred Holliday over Bay, but that is now water under the bridge. Should the Mets be satisfied with their newest bat? I say yes, because he is a perfect fit for this club.

When the Mets lost Carlos Delgado the balance of their lineup was thrown off. For over three years he was their cleanup hitter that could wreck games. Neither is Bay, but he can hit anywhere from fourth to sixth, and gives the Mets lineup depth and offsets some of the low OBP at the bottom of the order. Ironically his best production with Boston last year came out of the six hole. I think he should hit fifth the Mets lineup, protecting Wright or Beltran. The Mets can now put Jeff Francoeur in the six hole, a spot more fitting for his free swinging ways. If Carlos Delgado proves he is healthy, you could also sign him and possibly protect Bay with another power bat. There is not an offensive hitter outside of Holliday that fit the Mets better than Bay.

There is obviously risk. First, the fifth year vesting option sounds like it’s based on playing time, not performance, which means you could have a very expensive albatross old towards the end of the contract. Hopefully the Mets are practicing due diligence with Bay’s physical. I believe it’s not unreasonable to expect Bay to be productive offensively until age 35, however the defense is another story. If the Phillies can win with Pat Burrell and Raul Ibanez in the outfield, the Mets should survive with Jason Bay. I also think the reports of his bad defense are exaggerated, and perhaps had something to do with the challenging Green Monster in Fenway. Everyone seems to forget that Boston was willing to give Bay the same four year deal offered by the Mets. It was their reluctance for a fifth year, and prolonged negotiations, which had them go in another direction. If you are a disciple of Theo Epstein that should give you comfort that “Boy Wonder” thought Bay could hold up at least four years.

When it’s all said and done the Mets needed Jason Bay. Their lineup needed a player that could get on base, hit with power, and drive in run. Bay is well above average in all those categories. Some league sources told NYBD they felt the Mets bid against themselves, but I believe they got their man at a reasonable price. This has always been the case during the Minaya regime so none of us should be surprised. Now it’s on to rounding out the roster, which is where the true evaluation of Omar Minaya will begin.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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3 Responses to Positives Outweigh Risk in Bay Deal

  1. Studiophototrope

    Mike,

    >>> . I also think the reports of his bad defense are exaggerated, and perhaps had something to do with the challenging Green Monster in Fenway. <<<

    I disagree. If Manny could become a quality defender in Fenway's left field, and he did, it demonstrates that the Green Monster actually benefits poor defensive players. I think Bay was an adequate left fielder in Boston precisely because he played in front of the Monster. I believe Bay will be a huge defensive liability at Citi, and, his power numbers will diminish in that park as well. Given the Met's current circumstances they had to get either Bay or that other guy…but it's a move/contract that reeks of desperation.
    Not being a Met fan, and looking at them from the outside, the biggest question this year will be the Wright story. What's the real dish behind his dramatic drop in production and will it continue.

  2. dale

    well he certainly beats sheffield and murphy and pagan

  3. dale

    huge def liability?

    this is a team that started sheffield and murphy there last year

    bay is a huge upgrade

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