Mets Today: More Zobrist

With Ben Zobrist expected in town Tuesday, the Mets will put the full-court press on their top free-agent target. Reportedly, Zobrist wants $60 million over four years. The Mets originally said they didn’t want to go more than three years, but it is looking as if they’ll bend on the years.

If it happens it won’t be the first time as they acquiesced on Curtis Granderson and gave four years and gave two years to Bartolo Colon when they only wanted to give one.

Zobrist has proven to be a solid player who stays in shape, but he’ll be 39 at the end of the contract which makes it a risk. Of course, most teams know players will break down at the end of their contracts so the Mets can expect him to fall off in the third and fourth years.

I like Zobrist, but he’s a complementary player and won’t be the player to put them over the top. The Mets’ primary objectives should the bullpen and finding an outfield bat to platoon with Juan Lagares.

For the past two years we’ve been told by the Mets that Dilson Herrera was the long-term solution for second base, but their pursuit of Zobrist makes one wonder where he really fits into their plans.

The Mets did tender Ruben Tejada, but haven’t said how he’s recovering from his broken leg sustained in the playoffs. Tejada at shortstop and moving Wilmer Flores was thought to be a possible solution, but that seems to be on the back burner.

 

 

12 thoughts on “Mets Today: More Zobrist

  1. He seems like a nice investment for a year but not a guy that you’d put at the center of your plans and say “if we could just and this guy …” I think you make your team a LOT older because you just took a young player with a lot of potential and said we’re going a different direction. In my opinion Flores was not the answer there. If your plan is to build around pitching then you have to be solid up the middle. Zobrist is ok but he’s 35 so the range is going to be questionable. I sure wouldn’t break the bank for him especially since it’s the Wilpons so that bank is full of pennies.

    • Patrick: For the last two years the Mets have told us Dilson Herrera was the second baseman of the future. By signing Zobrist they are telling us the opposite. The Mets need to give him a chance if they intend to keep him.-JD

  2. It would be nice to have a guy at 2b who doesn’t lose 3-4 games a year defensively or on the basepaths, BUT…. if that same guy drives in 75 while playing 2b and contributes big hit after big hit, doesnt that offensive output, outweighs the 3-4 loses. Would Metdom blow up if we gave DM a contract for $60m or $80m? Why give it to BZ because he is a better defender. The only extra BZ brings is the ability to fill in as a LF. The potential CF platoon partners we are considering could fill in as a LF also, at much less than $20m… And seriously, if you are paying a jack of all trades utility guy $20m/yr, does that mean starters get $30m/yr and sluggers $35m-$40m per year??? I just dont see BZ as the missing piece after removing cespedes and the best all round hitter of the last 3 years, DM.

    • David Dillon: Sure, it would be good to have a Gold Glover at second, but Murphy won more games for the Mets with his bat than he lost for them with his glove. … Yes, the Mets could handle $60 million for Murphy if they wanted, but what he’s getting is about right. $80 million would be out of the question. … Zobrist offers more, like the ability to play the corner outfield positions, but that could be offset by his age. You can count on a drop off in the last two years of a four-year deal. If Murphy’s power in the postseason was not a fluke he could probably produce more at the plate. Zobrist is NOT the power source the Mets need to make up for Cespedes.-JD

      • This is not a criticism, more an observation. So often you repeat what people have remarked, with a tiny tiny variation. I always feel like our comments are 98% in agreement with a minor tweek. It’s confusing b/c you never specify “i agree with …. but disagree with this point….” You response adds the fact that BZ is older and will likely decline after his age 36 season. Murphy’s offense will always be stronger vs. BZ’s… (even if he never hr’s in six consecutive games again).
        Some slightly better defense with the added ability to catch flyballs in LF does not warrant $20m a yr.. BZ cannot be a corner OF on a power short team… DM can play 3 IF positions adequately… no need to give a better fielding super sub an extra $6 / 7m per season for 3 seasons. That contract would throw every other contract out of whack and result in every one wanting more money.

        • Murphy can play two positions (1B, 3B) adequately, and one far below average. That position happens to be the one of greatest need, which is why they’re looking to move on to a slightly better option.

          I don’t believe the Mets will pay Zobrist $20 million a year. That’s rather unlikely. So you’re looking at paying $3m to $4m more per year than Daniel Murphy, which makes sense.

  3. While I understand that giving Zobrist four years and $60 million seems excessive for a 34 year old, we have to be realistic. The Mets will never be able to keep this pitching staff together. You’re looking at two more years with the status quo, which means it’s time to go for it. That means you pay a player who can handle 2B, 3B, 1B, and the corner outfield and fits your hitting philosophy so he can help them win now. Will his deal be an albatross in year four (even three)? Probably.

    But by then this team could have World Series titles under its belt. Or it may not. What we do know is Harvey, Noah, deGrom, Matz, and Wheeler are here now. They’re under control now. This is their time. A player of this caliber is a critical (though not flashy or statistical favorite) to winning teams. Ask the Rays. Or the Royals.

    People also need to realize what the average player makes in this market. Gone are the days where $10 million seemed excessive for an average position player. Revenues are up, costs are up, and guys like this are in short supply. So here we are.

    • I totally agree they can keep the pitching staff another two seasons, maybe 3, (I dont know the current contract details).

      I disagree that Zobrist is the missing piece. $15m/yr for a super sub is a luxury for the NYY,LAD maybe boston teams. BZ can not be a full time OF’r or play there for long periods due to his lack of power as a corner OF’r.

      I think it makes more sense to “go for it” by paying Y.Cespedes if you can get him on a 3-4 yr deal. I would not commit to anything longer. Does anyone wonder why KC is not trying to re-sign BZ? Price maybe?

      • You don’t necessarily need a Cespedes or corner outfield power to consistently win in this league. The Mets are more complete than we give them credit for, and he instantly brings defensive credibility and versatility desperately in need of both. I’m not saying he’s a superstar, but he’s the player they need.

        Zobrist isn’t a super-sub, either. That’s selling him short by a wide margin. He plays anywhere everyday and posts an OPS+ and WAR regularly above average. He can hit in the playoffs. Just because he plays multiple positions doesn’t mean he’s a ‘super sub’. The Mets would gladly engage Cespedes on a four year deal, but if you think he’s settling for four years you’re dreaming. They knew he was gone the moment they traded for him.

    • I would rather spend the $15/20m a year on two players who can help. This guy is a super sub. He is a piece and not the answer.

      We need to get a ss first. We have internal options for 2b. We also need to get a cf type.

    • It is definitely not a criticism. I often re-read them a few times b/c it seems like we are agreeing on almost all points, sometimes stated a little differently. Could u imagine if we had just made an eighty million dollar signing… that would have been nuts.