Wilson Ramos is our new catcher

After a tense few weeks of possible lop-sided trades to land J.T. Realmuto, the Mets have wisely pivoted and signed a catching upgrade to a free agent contract without having to give up key players and prospects. Pending a physical, former Twin, Phillie, National and Ray, Wilson Ramos will be our catcher in 2019. The deal is for a reported two years, $19 million with a third-year option that could bring the total to $26 million.

There’s no question Ramos is not of the same ilk as Realmuto, however there’s also no question that he’s an upgrade over the injury prone Travis d’Arnaud and the light-hitting Kevin Plawecki. One of those two figures to serve as a secondary catcher, with the other possibly getting traded. While not a gold glover, Ramos is adept at picking off base runners and otherwise grades out as an average catcher. Hitting is Ramos’ forte. Last season he slugged .306/.358/.487, numbers the Mets haven’t seen from a catcher in ages. Ramos comes a lot cheaper than Yasmani Grandal and we can all breathe a sigh of relief that we won’t be dismantling our 40 man roster in a desperate grab for Brodie Van Wagenen’s favorite CAA client. Now our vaunted pitching staff has a professional behind the dish. This team is starting to come together.

57 comments for “Wilson Ramos is our new catcher

  1. Mark
    December 16, 2018 at 6:30 pm

    I’m glad the Mets signed such a good veteran catcher!
    It should really help our great pitching staff. Hopefully, he can throw out a lot of potential base stealers

  2. December 16, 2018 at 6:34 pm

    Thank God the Realmuto saga is over! Solid signing for a good price even with his durability and defensive issues. I am more excited about Nimmo staying than Ramos coming in and that’s no dig at Ramos.

    • Pal88
      December 16, 2018 at 7:05 pm

      Well said….Nimmo is going to surprise everyone…glad we didn’t loose him

  3. Pal88
    December 16, 2018 at 6:53 pm

    All is well in Metland..the absolute right decision..too much drama with Jeter and the Marlins…we don’t loose anybody…

  4. royhobbs7
    December 16, 2018 at 6:58 pm

    Atta boy, Brodie!
    Now get us a solid left-handed set-up man (Ollie would be OK).

    • Chris B
      December 16, 2018 at 7:18 pm

      Tony Sipp

    • Mike Walczak
      December 16, 2018 at 9:08 pm

      Please, no Ollie. I agree, Sipp is a better choice.

      I love the signing. Ramos is a solid albeit not great major leaguer. Far better than giving up the farm for Realmuto.

      Watch it come back and haunt the Marlins that they over priced him.

  5. Eraff
    December 16, 2018 at 6:59 pm

    Yay

  6. TJ
    December 16, 2018 at 7:03 pm

    I am quite pleased with this transaction, as Ramos makes the most sense for the Mets given his price relative to the other two big catchers. As stated above, Realmuto is clearly a better player, but given the price it just did not make sense for the Mets. While Ramos is known mostly for his bat, his defense is solid, which means the Mets upgrade on both sides at the position. Also, his veteran status and years in the NL add more experience to the positiona dn gameplanning. Let TDA and Plawecki battle it out for the bakcup spot.

    The Realmuto saga is not over yet for the Mets, as they still have to worry about a competitor acquiring him, especially the Braves, but the Dodgers and other NL playoff contenders as well.

  7. December 16, 2018 at 8:05 pm

    This is crazy

    Wilson Ramos has gotten 400+ PA with at least a 120 OPS+ in two of the past three seasons.Last Mets catcher with even 300 PA and a 110 OPS+ was:Mike Piazza, 2002— Andrew Simon (@AndrewSimonMLB) December 16, 2018

    https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

  8. Chris F
    December 16, 2018 at 8:07 pm

    I’ll take it, but I hope this is prelude to signing Realmuto at FA.

    I think this is an improvement at C by some margin, but its not like a slam dunk victory; I don’t think there is reason to be crazy excited (but I hope Im wrong). Clearly this was choice 2 or even choice 3.

    I think it says the team definitely has cash issues to consider because Grandal is better, and they didn’t want to go the years/financial distance. Thats ok.

    The team is better for sure. Interestingly enough, we are getting older, not younger. I guess this is the short term plan to win. Will be interesting to see how this all plays out.

  9. December 16, 2018 at 8:15 pm

    So much for Ramos wanting 3/$40, eh?

    This is so much better than overpaying for Realmuto and hopefully we can ease off on some of the ridiculous trade ideas that were batted around.

    Now to find if KP or TDA have trade value…

  10. TexasGusCC
    December 16, 2018 at 8:46 pm

    I pity the pitchers of the NL East when Cespedes comes back.

    • December 17, 2018 at 2:46 am

      Gus don’t you mean if?

  11. Name
    December 16, 2018 at 9:07 pm

    I wonder if we’ll feel the same way about Ramos next year as we do about Todd Frazier right.

    • TexasGusCC
      December 16, 2018 at 8:49 pm

      We all knew Frazier’s bat has a hole in it but hoped for the best; rather, his value seems to be in BSing the press and catching the ball. Ramos is more established. His bad luck was getting injured right before his free agent year and then losing half a year after that to recover. If that hadn’t happened, he’s still a National in the third year of a five year $80 million dollar deal.

    • Chris F
      December 16, 2018 at 9:13 pm

      exactly Name.

      • Metsense
        December 16, 2018 at 10:12 pm

        Jeff McNeill should play over Frasier and also spell Cano occasionally. Frasier could get at bats spelling McNeil, Alonzo and play Third Base when McNeil spells Cano.

        • Chris F
          December 19, 2018 at 12:13 pm

          Callaway already said Frazier is the startng 3B. McNeil is a utility/bench guy. He wont be a regular starter on 1 April. Furthermore dont expect Alonso on 1B on opening day either. It would be malfeasance for BVW to forfeit a year of a potential star for a couple weeks of games. The rule sucks, but it is the rule.

          • TexasGusCC
            December 19, 2018 at 2:52 pm

            Chris, I’m sure there’s an aspect of his game that Alsonso needs to work on for a couple of weeks 😉 More contact perhaps?

    • TJ
      December 16, 2018 at 9:26 pm

      Without the benefit of a detailed analysis, probably 75-80% of free agent signings don’t pan out. Hopefully Ramos will be in the minority.

      Regarding Frazier, a few notes – he still has a year left. In the wacky world of WAR valuation, it looks like he covered his pay by both bWAR and fWAR. This despite a horrendous, injury filled season that looks like he mailed it in for the final month. But, as a glove first vet that will bat lower in the line up and likely not play every day, he has a good shot at being a contributing piece.

  12. MattyMets
    December 16, 2018 at 9:34 pm

    The more I think about it, the happier I am with this move. Nimmo, Conforto, Rosario and Syndergaard are pieces to build around, not trade bait. Listen, I’d trade any three of them for Mike Trout or Mookie Betts, but…

    I like the way the off-season is going and how the team is being assembled. The next move I want to see is signing Marwin Gonzalez. A good righty bat, depth for the outfield, a versatile glove. I love the idea of having a good hitter who can play so many positions – why Sandy wanted Zobrist so badly a few years ago. Guys like that make for great injury insurance. I know a lot of teams have interest, but, man he checks a lot of boxes for the Mets.

    A.J. Pollock is a bad idea. I can’t say that enough. I’d sooner plug in a veteran like Jones on a one year deal and spend the money elsewhere.

    • Rae
      December 17, 2018 at 9:11 am

      I agree. Sign Jones who hit 281 last year, and is still a professional hitter with some speed. He is no longer a top notch outfielder but he can play RF if Nimmo or McNeil is pencilled in at CF. I think McNeil will flourish in center, and Jones will do alright in right. Glad Waggy saw reason, and didn’t fork over Syndergaard to the Padres or God forbid, the Yankees. The Padres were not offering any of their top free agents, and wanted the Mets only to catch scraps from their dung heap. At least the Yankees were offering Gary Sanchez to the Mets for Thor. If I’m Waggy I’d cross the Padres off my list of potential trade partners because what they offered for Syndergaard was green crap from the bottom of the toilet bowl.

  13. Eraff
    December 16, 2018 at 10:18 pm

    I’m taking the Mets seriously…. the moves are decisive and they Match the statements of Urgency for a team with a Win Now Rotation

    I’m in agreement with Matty— Marwyn G would be a great piece

    I do t need them to solve everything for April, but the moves they’ve made are meaningful

    To Brian’s Point on trade value for KP and Travis—— id hold them both for now….. and I don’t think the next move is a trade—- who knows

    • Chris F
      December 16, 2018 at 11:26 pm

      I cant see any purpose for Marwyn Gonzalez. That person is Jeff McNeil.

      Martino is reporting that the Mets for some unknowable reason are planning to keep TdA and shop KP. Yikes.

      • MattyMets
        December 16, 2018 at 11:22 pm

        Chris F – McNeil bats left handed and plays infield. Gonzalez bats right handed and can play outfield, as well as infield. Having both those guys who’d give us incredible versatility and depth and bolster us against inevitable injuries. Gonzalez can play LF or RF with Nimmo platooning with Lagares in CF. With Ces our for at least half the year and Nimmo and Conforto still trying to prove they can hit lefties. Gonzalez is the perfect fit.

        • TexasGusCC
          December 17, 2018 at 2:49 am

          Matty, Gonzalez is a switch hitter. Further, Chris is right, Gonzalez isn’t all that. He came up as a shortstop and now is an outfielder because he grades positively there but negative at every infield spot. If you really want a good Swiss Army kind of player, how about Josh Harrison?

        • TexasGusCC
          December 17, 2018 at 2:55 am

          For a real stealth move, I’ve always like Spangenberg. He can fly, is athletic, and didn’t hit in San Diego, but who does? He plays second, third and left field. He was a stud in the minors.

          • MattyMets
            December 17, 2018 at 8:05 am

            In 738 career games, Gonzales has played 191 games at first, 110 at second, 93 at third, 291 at SS and 161 in the OF (primarliy LF). He’s also had 72 PH appearances and has DH’d 11 times.

            Josh Harrison is a good fall back option though not quite as versatile (no time at first or CF and less experience at SS) but he does have one pitching appearance!

            Spangenberg is versatile but not as strong a bat and he’s another lefty.

            • TexasGusCC
              December 17, 2018 at 9:11 am

              What’s Gonzalez’ ratings at those positions? Spangenberg played in San Diego and no one hits there. Check his minor league numbers.

        • Eraff
          December 17, 2018 at 5:37 am

          Bingo Matty!!!

        • Rae
          December 17, 2018 at 9:19 am

          No. McNeil has played left and right field in the minors, and has played a few games at centerfield too.

    • December 17, 2018 at 2:50 am

      I’m glad to see Mattymets and Eraff coming aboard. I’ve been asking for MG for quite some time now here on Mets 360. I think Harrison is looking for more then what’s available in the Mets budget.

      • December 17, 2018 at 8:03 am

        “Coming Aboard”….????? !!!! How dare you!!!??? I Invented the idea of Signing Marwyn!!!! 😉

        • December 17, 2018 at 8:30 am

          +1 If you say so!

        • Rae
          December 17, 2018 at 9:20 am

          You do mean Marwin Gonzo right?

  14. Metsense
    December 16, 2018 at 10:24 pm

    Wilson Ramos is an upgrade. He’s good offensive player, an average defensive player, and a short term signing that is very affordable. For these reasons I think it was an excellent move.

    • Rae
      December 17, 2018 at 9:25 am

      Ramos has a good arm, and is efficient and effective at throwing would be base stealers out. If I’m Waggy I’m turning around to sign Caleb Joseph as my backup catcher as he is really good at throwing runners out as he is a defensive catcher so don’t expect him to hit above the Mendoza line but his defense is really good. Have him catch Syndergaard and Matz, and the Mets should be set at the catching position with Plawecki in Syracuse/AAA, and d’Arnaud lost in Neverland.

      • TexasGusCC
        December 17, 2018 at 9:28 am

        Plawecki is out of options.

  15. Dave
    December 17, 2018 at 1:55 am

    I understand the Mets not wanting to trade away either Conforto, Nimmo or Rosario to get JT, but why didn’t they go out and sign Grandal who hit 24 HRs and who is still the best defensive catcher on the market then??

    • Rae
      December 17, 2018 at 10:00 am

      Ramos hits 15-to-20 homes per year plus he usually hits above 280. He hit 305 last year. Wilson Ramos also has a good arm, and does throw runners out at a good clip. Grandal would have cost way too much for the Mets. Sign a backup defensive catcher like Caleb Joseph who also has a good arm but barely reaches Mendoza when it comes to hitting. Turn around and sign Marwin Gonzalez for IF/OF and forget about Pollock or Adam Jones. McNeil is my centerfield choice with Martin backing up most every position save catcher and pitcher.

  16. December 17, 2018 at 2:35 am

    Money Dave. Grandal is looking for 39 million. Plus the team would have to give up a pick and 500,000

    • MattyMets
      December 17, 2018 at 11:53 am

      Pete, I don’t think 39mm would have gotten it done for Grandal. He’s looking for 4 years so my guess is at least 48. Thing is, if the Dodgers pull of a trade for Realmuto (my prediction as they have the need, the desire, and the pieces) Grandal is gonna lose at musical chairs and might be stuck settling for a lot less while some team like the Angels gets lucky. Conversely, if the Dodgers bring back Grandal, Jeter and co may have to pull Realmuto and their lofty trade demands off the market until mid season. FAs have to be careful about holding out in this market. So many teams are rebuilding or don’t have money or else don’t have the need. For most FAs that leaves only 4 or 5 possible teams in play so holding out can be very risky as we saw with guys like Moustakas and Lynn last year.

      • December 18, 2018 at 12:12 am

        Matty a catcher who is 30+ asking for 4 years is just being optimistic. I don’t think even the Dodgers would do that. But since the market is slowly drying up who is left out there that would invest that kind of money and is looking to win? I could count on one hand probably. The Red Soxs, Dodgers, Angels?, Phillies? Astros? We’ll see.

  17. December 17, 2018 at 2:38 am

    I can understand now why the Mets decided to hold on to TDA. If FA’s know the team is in need of a C then the asking price would go up knowing their need. Now the Mets can cut TDA and it’ll only cost them 1 million to do so.

  18. December 17, 2018 at 3:02 am

    Gus is he a FA or you mean trading for him? His salary?

    • TexasGusCC
      December 17, 2018 at 9:13 am

      Free Agent.

  19. NYM6986
    December 17, 2018 at 7:38 am

    Good signing and a short term commitment. Hope to see TAD go in a trade as he will never be healthy. Would have preferred Mesoraco as the back up because he has some pop and was stronger defensively than anyone else we had. What a bold move it would be to sign Machado now. We need a player that strikes fear in opposing pitchers and until Ces comes back we don’t have one. What we do have is the old time table setters in Nimmo and Rosario, and their speed will do us well if someone teaches them how to be base stealing threats so we can manufacture some easy runs when the bats go a little silent. Think back to how KC stole that WS. Thrilled BVW is not stuck on the status quo. So far hasn’t he given us the kind of GM we hoped for? Think Bob Melvin would have been more aggressive?? Very optimistic going forward and hoping there are a few more tricks up his sleeve aside from inking Jake to a five year deal. #LetsGoMets.

    • Rae
      December 17, 2018 at 9:50 am

      I like Rocko too but he just does not possess the throwing arm the Mets need at catcher. Yes. He was a much better at throwing the ball than Plawecki, Lobaton or d’Arnaud was in 2018. We are all aware that d’Arnaud just can’t throw the ball or stay off the DL. Perhaps Brodie envisions sending him and Jason Vargas to an America League team for at least a case of Pepsi?

      • MattyMets
        December 17, 2018 at 12:01 pm

        As arb 3 and due to make ~3.5mm, I don’t see what trade value TDA has. Plawecki doesn’t have much either. I know they’re both out of options, but maybe something could be negotiated. Given the injury histories of Ramos and TDA, this team needs to carry a decent third catcher on the 40 man. And don’t give me “Tomas Nido” because he stinks. In games caught last year by him and Lobaton the pitchers all struggled. Those two can’t frame, call a game, throw out runners or hit. This isn’t Little League where a kid has value because he’s willing to put on the gear. Yes the injury list was long in May and June, but it wasn’t a coincidence that the Mets started playing better when Mesoraco arrived. The groundhog is no star, but he knows what he’s doing back there. I doubt he’d e willing t take a 3rd catcher role, but we need to stash a decent vet in Syracuse.

        • December 17, 2018 at 1:08 pm

          Nido worked very well with Syndergaard last season. He caught him more than any other catcher and in his 11 games with Nido as his catcher, Syndergaard had a 1.97 ERA and limited batters to a .579 OPS.

          I don’t imagine that they will but you could make a case for swapping Nido and a couple of relief pitchers throughout the year, riding the shuttle to Syracuse, in an effort to get him to catch 15-20 of Syndergaard’s starts.

          • MattyMets
            December 17, 2018 at 1:01 pm

            Nido also had a .438 OPS
            and his defensive metrics weren’t so hot. Rivera made a much better Thor caddy. Speaking of which, if we trade Plaw or TDA , Rivera is a perfect #3 to stash in AAA.

  20. December 17, 2018 at 8:11 am

    The way the MLB system works, the real motivation for extending deGrom is public posture for a popular player, and visibility to other players/free agents.

    My personal feelings are that Jake should ask for 100 million of guaranteed money before he throws another pitch…and I’m reasonably certain that’s been expressed constructively. I’d like to see his final 2 years “bought out” with 2 more guaranteed and mutual option 5th. that allows Jake to sell himself at a later date. The guarantee should come with some reasonable “discount”. Neither side should over leverage their positions.

  21. December 17, 2018 at 8:21 am

    Getting Ramos is the smart move. Way overpriced JT Realmuto ! Jeter will eat this.
    Now Braves and Nats out too on him. Just hope Phils don’t get him and I won’t care. Let him go to the dark hole named Reds or AL, Dodgers are no dummies and won’t trade all of the young talent they have either. Watch em go back to Grandal on a home town discount.

    Now, Metsies need to get a LH for the BP, I say Andrew Miller or Tony Sipp.
    The latter would be cheaper.
    A BP of Diaz, Familia, Lugo, Gsellman, Sipp and Zamora would be a big improvment vs last year, along with improved catching and Alonso starting the year at 1B, Cano’s impact on the lineup, this could be a 87-88 win team and possibly over 90 if the pitching staff does not miss many starts & Cespedes comes back hot in the summer. Forget Pollack. Use the $ on the BP or one more starter. A F/A versatile OF can be found on the cheap until Ces gets back.
    Mets could start Nimmo in LF, Lagares in CF and Conforto in RF for April – June. That is if they can keep Lagares off the DL until then….lol…

  22. Rae
    December 17, 2018 at 9:38 am

    Lagares is a great defensive player but is not a good hitter. He does well as a 7th inning defensive replacement player where he might get 1 or 2 at bats per game. The Mets know what he is, and his defense in the late innings really helps the pitching staff. I think McNeil needs a chance at CF as he has played mostly left and right field before but did have a couple of games at center in his minor league career, and his defense in the outfield was not bad. McNeil was originally a SS but has played all over the infield, but has also been in the OF too. Why not see if CF suits him? The Mets have nothing to loose if he doesn’t make it as an OFer. I wager he will adjust and adapt as McNeil is an old school player much like TJ Rivera. Anyone have any status updates on TJ for 2019? I’d appreciate any info on his recovery from his Tommie John surgery. Plus I’d like to know when he will be able to start his rehab in the minors. Thanks!

    • MattyMets
      December 17, 2018 at 12:13 pm

      Rae, I’ve been looking for updates on TJ myself. I believe he is playing winter ball. He’s nearly a year and a half removed from TJ surgery (the irony of sharing those initials!) but had some set backs over the summer when he tried to work his way back through a minor league assignment. I really liked him. Great story that he finally got his shot after so many years on the farm. Shows a good stick and eye at the plate as well as versatility in the field. He has the potential to replace Flores and at a rookie salary. Hopefully he can compete for a bench spot in ST. With him, McNeil, d’Arnaud, Smith and Lagares (assuming we sign an OF) we’d have a pretty strong bench.

      • TexasGusCC
        December 17, 2018 at 9:52 pm

        TJ got reinjured in July and will be out again until this summer. It’s why I was surprised they retained him, but seeing how few players are on the roster and how many more should have been cut – Sewald, Gagnon, Petersen? – I guess it wasn’t the worst thing in the world to hold him. As for Flores…. now there will be peace in the Middle East.

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