Building the ultimate Mets outfielder, from their current outfielders

New-York-Mets-Logo-VectorIt is often said that nobody is perfect, and that certainly rings true with baseball players. It seems that even the best players have weaknesses. Whether it be Noah Syndergaard‘s molasses-like delivery to the plate or Curtis Granderson‘s sometimes ineffective throwing arm, every player has their flaws. So what if we could create an outfielder using the best traits from the Mets current crop of outfielders? Here is how I would build the Ultimate Mets Outfielder.

Heart and Hustle

It is so often the case that we see very talented baseball players waste their talent by not putting effort into the game. What separates some players is their admirable hustle that they constantly bring to the game. No outfielder on the Mets exemplifies these qualities more than Curtis Granderson. Never one to give up on a play, the Roberto Clemente award winner always brings hustle to his game, whether it be on the base paths or in the outfield. This type of hustle always benefits a team, as it inspires others to put in equal effort.

Offensive Prowess

For anyone who remotely knows of the Mets and understands their current outfield situation, this is an easy one. Yoenis Céspedes is the most exciting slugger on the Mets, no matter how you look at it. His slash line of .280/.354/.530 earned him a contract this offseason worth $110 million over four years, to the joy of many Mets fans. The feared slugger belted 31 home runs, and most of them over the fence by a mile. When Céspedes bats, there is no other atmosphere like it at Citi Field.

Fielding Ability

Although Yoenis Céspedes was a Gold Glove recipient in 2015, we turn to the other Mets outfielder that possesses one. Juan Lagares, when healthy, is one of the top defensive centerfielders in the game.

In his Gold Glove campaign of 2014, Lagares led the league in Range Factor and was worth 11 Zone Runs in the outfield. Known around the league for his circus catches and rocket arm, teams fear a healthy Lagares patrolling center field.

Potential

Nothing is more fascinating than the idea of a good baseball player that is young and can only grow into a better player. The Mets have exactly that in 23 year-old Michael Conforto. After being drafted tenth in the 2014 Amateur Draft, Conforto tore through the minor leagues. In 2015, the Oregon State product made his debut against the L.A Dodgers. Conforto quickly gained notoriety for having an excellent eye at the plate and decent power to the opposite field. With the future looking bright, Conforto entered the 2016 season looking to establish himself as an everyday player. Conforto struggled though, as he finished the season with a lowly .220 batting average. Although he finished with measly batting statistics, Conforto still has vast potential. At age 23, the baseball world is still his oyster.

Consistency

When it comes to consistency, Jay Bruce fits as perfectly as a puzzle piece. Although he may not have seen much offensive success with the Mets as of yet, Bruce was a model of yearly consistency in Cincinnati. During his years there, Bruce hit over 25 home runs and drove in 70 runs in all but two seasons. He even went on a run of three straight seasons where he hit at least thirty home runs and drove in at least 97 runs. The only downside to these numbers is his consistently low batting average. While he hit a solid .281 in 2010, his next closest average is the .265 he hit in 2016. If you can accept a consistent power source over consistent batting averages, then Jay Bruce is the type consistency you’re searching for.

13 comments for “Building the ultimate Mets outfielder, from their current outfielders

  1. Metsense
    December 24, 2016 at 10:11 am

    Great up beat article apropos for the holiday season.
    The playoff game catch exemplifies Granderson as a team first player, willing to give up himself for a win.
    Cespedes is the straw that stirs the drink.
    A healthy Lagares is so much fun to watch in centerfield.
    Conforto does have a whole career ahead of himself.
    Odd man out, Jay Bruce, is still a good player that I consistantly want to trade for a holiday relief package. Maybe “Sanda” will put something under the tree.

  2. DaMetsman in Washington State
    December 24, 2016 at 6:13 pm

    The ultimate Mets outfielder has to cover lots of ground, so here are a few historical tidbits…

    In 1996, two Mets OF had career years. This unprecedented production by two Mets outfielders in one season was astounding, but yielded a 71-91 record even with a career year from Todd Hundley (41 HR/112 RBI) and fine performances from Butch Huskey, Jeff Kent, Jose Vizcaino, Alex Ochoa, Edgardo Alfionzo, Rey Ordonez and a terrific closer in John Franco. Problem was a poor pitching staff. So, no matter how good the offense, if the arms don’t make the grade, the team will crash and burn.

    Best season ever by a Mets LF: 1996 Bernard Gilkey had a career year and was lights out.. 181 H/44 2B/30 HR/77 XBH/108 R/17 SB/73 BB/.317 BA/.393 OBP/.562 SLG/.955 OPS/155 OPS+/321 TB/18 A

    Best season ever by a Mets CF: 1996 Lance Johnson had a career year and was stellar… 227 H/31 2B/21 3B/61 XBH/117 R/50 SB/only 40 K/.333 BA/.362 OBP/.479 SLG/.841 OPS/125 OPS+/327 TB/

    Best season ever by a Mets RF: 1987 Darryl Strawberry had a career year and was at his best… 151 H/32 2B/39 HR/76 XBH/108 R/36 SB/97 BB/.284 BA/.398 OBP/.583 SLG/.981 OPS/165 OPS+/296 TB

    One of the most consistent OF performers for the Mets was Kevin McReynolds for five consecutive campaigns from 1987-1991 when he averaged about 146 G/600 PA/80 R/24 HR/87 RBI/.273 BA/.331 OBP/.793 OPS/123 OPS+/253 TB stole 65 bases and played a stellar LF with a cannon.

    The ultimate Mets outfield in 2017 has Cespedes in RF (won’t happen), Conforto and TJ Rivera platooning in LF and Nimmo and Lagares platooning in CF. That outfield would be fun to watch with four Mets prospects and Ces. Get prospects and/or bullpen pieces for Bruce and Grandy while the Metsecutives can. They will also save $28 million.

    The ultimate Mets outfielder should have Cespedes power and arm, the defensive prowess and range of Lagares and the speed and bat control of Lance Johnson.

    • Norm3
      December 24, 2016 at 10:13 pm

      Nice bit of Mets history, thanks!
      I’ll bet that a lot of Mets fans were unaware of, or forgot, the excellent ’96 season that Johnson and Gilkey produced. As for McReynolds, too many Mets fans did not appreciate him. His style of running made it appear he wasn’t trying, but that wasn’t so. He was an excellent base runner, a very fine fielder and he could rake. But he never seemed happy in NY.

      • david carl harrer
        December 25, 2016 at 1:25 pm

        Have you forgotten the 1st championship season? Great outfield, with Cleon in LF, Agee in CF, Shamsky / Swoboda in RF.
        They were the major league champs!

        • DaMetsman in Washington State
          December 25, 2016 at 11:58 pm

          No David, I have not forgotten that 1969 championship team. It was the highlight of my first 15 years of life. But that team completely and absolutely proves my point about great pitching contains hitters of all proficiencies. While the Mets outfielders provided the bulk of the offense that season, with a career year from Cleon Jones, a near career year from Tommy Agee (he was actually a bit better in 1970) and substantive production (23 HR/97 RBI) from the platoon of Shamsky/Swoboda, the team won for one reason and one reason only—pitching quality and depth. The Mets were in the lower bottom half of the 12 NL teams in most offensive categories. However, not only did they have a deep rotation with five starters under 3.47 ERA, but the bullpen was quite effective with a strong lefty (Tug McGraw) and a crafty righty (Ron Taylor) finishers (no one was called a closer in those days) mixed in with under-the-radar arms like Cal Koonce, Jack DiLauro and a very young Nolan Ryan. The five primary relievers had a combined 3.18 ERA. The Mets pitching staff had a combined 2.99 ERA (#2 in the NL). The starters finished 51 games (#5), had 16 shutouts (#1), 35 saves (#3), gave up the fewest hits, second fewest runs and earned runs and were #4 in strikeouts. Of course, the pitching staff was helped immeasurably by one of the best defensive catchers who ever stepped on a diamond and pretty good up-the-middle defense. Great pitching staff. Good outfield. Only Mike Piazza (in 1998) hit for a higher season average of than the 1969 Cleon Jones.

          • DaMetsman in Washington State
            December 26, 2016 at 5:35 am

            Correcting Myself —Cleon Jones 1969 team high .340 batting average was the third highest in team history. In 1998, Mike Piazza did hit .348, but was bested by teammate John Olerud, who had 197 hits and batted .354.

            Editor’s Note – Please do not capitalize words in your post, as that is a violation of our Comment Policy.

            • david
              December 26, 2016 at 5:38 am

              Remember both Piazza and Olerud. Yet, Cleon made a statement in Left Field. In 1969

      • david
        December 26, 2016 at 1:32 pm

        I would agree completely, Kevin Mac was an under=appreciated ballplayer for many years, on the New York Mets.

  3. Nym6986
    December 25, 2016 at 8:16 am

    Any way you slice it the Mets need one more big bat in the lineup. They should also sign Blevins because they already have seen what he can do. Bruce really needs to go to the AL and be a DH because as he showed last year the man can’t field his position. If Lagares shows in SP that he is the player from 2014 then we will be a much better team. Less than 2 months till Ps and Ca report. #LetsGoMets

  4. david carl harrer
    December 25, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    Let’s Go Mets ( NYC is in my wordly blood ).

  5. david
    December 26, 2016 at 5:35 am

    Thank you for providing so many facts of that wonderful year, and championship season, for the NY METS. Grote and Boswell and Harelson. Up the Middle. Clendenon ( great mid year pick-up ) and Charles, at the corners. It was fantastic being a youngster, growing up with the Champion Mets, as well as Joe Willie and Super Bowl champion JETS; and let us not forget those New York Knicks 2 Championships with Willis and Clyde, then Earl the Pearl. Not forgotten forwards of Dave Debushere and Bill Bradley.

  6. david
    December 26, 2016 at 5:43 am

    Yet, Cleon and his .340 Batting Average ruled for generations.
    Respect & pride.

    Editor’s Note – Please do not capitalize words in your post, as that is a violation of our Comment Policy.

  7. david
    December 26, 2016 at 1:52 pm

    Even here in the UK, I spread the good news, concerning all the New York teams, that so influenced my youth. The Champions.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: