Mets bench depth being put to the test

Although Mets General Manager Brodie Van Wagenen has come under fire of late, there is one thing for which he deserves credit. That is stashing some extra veterans in AAA Syracuse for when injuries would inevitably strike. And strike they did this past week as our three best outfielders all got injured.

At full strength, the Mets outfield features Yoenis Cespedes (likely out for the season now that he broke his ankle before his heels could heal), Michael Conforto (out with a concussion) and Brandon Nimmo (out with a neck injury). Instead, we now find ourselves juggling a mix of infielders out of position – Jeff McNeil, J.D. Davis and Dominic Smith, and veterans who’ve been lying in wait in Syracuse like Carlos Gomez and Rajai Davis to piece together a serviceable outfield. A third veteran reserve – Gregor Blanco – remains in AAA as a last resort. The somewhat younger guys in AAA – Travis Taijeron, Rymer Liriano and *gulp* Tim Tebow are all hitting below the Mendoza line.

Gomez and Davis both held their own in Syracuse and have quickly contributed, Davis with a home run in his first Met at bat Wednesday night. Gomez got off to a slower start, but both are professionals who should be able to hold down the fort in the short term. Neither possesses the game changing speed they once had, but are still better than average on the bases and in the field.

If Davis or Smith can prove they can handle left field, the Mets should have enough outfield depth in the long term to get through the season. Infield is not a concern as our GM may have overstocked in this department, but jut in case, Syracuse also holds veteran infield reserves like Luis Guillorme, Danny Espinosa and Dilson Herrera. Given Tomas Nido‘s offensive struggles and Wilson Ramos‘ injury history, catcher Rene Rivera will certainly get the call at some point. The defense first veteran is holding his own in Syracuse, hitting .266 thus far.

The Mets seem to have turned a corner and hopefully they can keep it going. The crosstown Yankees have had twice as many injuries this season and just keep on winning anyway. The key for the Mets is for the veteran players who are healthy to start stepping up their games. Todd Frazier seems to have gotten the memo the way he’s been playing. Perhaps he could pass it along to Ramos and Cano.

16 comments for “Mets bench depth being put to the test

  1. MattyMets
    May 24, 2019 at 7:21 am

    Since writing this post, Aaron Alther was picked up off the scrap heap. Yes he hit some with Philly a few years ago, but I can’t get excited about anyone who couldn’t crack the 5-man rotation in the Giants outfield, which has been baseball’s worst the past few years.

    • TexasGusCC
      May 24, 2019 at 8:38 am

      Don’t really understand the Altherr pickup since he’s out of options. Unless he’s here for the few weeks that McNeil and Conforto are out…

  2. NYM6986
    May 24, 2019 at 7:43 am

    Let’s not overlook that our pitching has been pretty good as of late and Diaz in the 9th is back. It’s a long season and grateful to have the reserves from Syracuse making the most of their opportunities. If Gomez and Davis continue to rake they will be great pieces to include in a mid season deal.

  3. May 24, 2019 at 7:52 am

    Injury bug has hit Mets, but it seemingly hits all teams sooner or later. Yanks are the blueprint of a team that got blasted by injuries, keeps winning. Mets can do same for the next 10 days or so beating up on the Tigers and trying to stay even at least with the Dodgers and Snakes. BP has been much better and will be better once Lugo gets back. Gagnon, Bashlor, Zamora may just even be keepers ! Rare stinker by Gsellman yesterday, but he never should have faced Parra. Isn’t that what a LOOGY is for – lefty on lefty ???
    Even Diaz coming in for one extra out, after Gsellman got into trouble, but managed to get two outs. I don’t get Calloway sometimes, but Mets have enough talent for a WC. No Cespedes tells me maybe there will be a summer deadline deal to get a bat, unless JD Davis finds a perm spot and rakes, or Ramos and Cano wake up. Alfonso, Conforto and McNeil have carried the team and will need to continue. I think the starters are back. Interesting to see if after June 5th draft, Mets make a move for Keuchel. They should have done so with GIo Gonzalez, blew that one. If Mets can get a WC, I will be happy. Their pitching makes them dangerous if they can just get to the playoffs . Playoffs ?, Playoffs ?? Did someone say Playoffs ???

  4. Metsense
    May 24, 2019 at 9:07 am

    Syracuse Mets have an interesting roster. BVW thought out of the box when he assembled this roster. I think it is innovative because the fans in Syracuse have recognizable players to cheer and the Mets (who own the team) should make as profit. Also, he cleared first base in case Smith, Alonso or JD Davis didn’t make team out of spring training.Having veterans on the AAA roster also has a benefit of showing young minor leaguers how it is done.
    Now there is an opening at second base.The following are Syracuse OPS’s. Hechavarria .828 and Guillorme .763 are the recent promotions. They still have Dilson Herrera .905 with 8 homers, Danny Espinosa .775 and recently acquired Ruben Tejada 1.264 but they are not on the 40 man roster.
    We witnessed the benefits of experienced call ups with R Davis and CarGo and their 3 run homers. None of the above players should be relied on as starters but in a temporary situation they enhance the major league team.
    Maybe BVW is on to something.

    • MattyMets
      May 24, 2019 at 12:06 pm

      Forgot we have Tejada too. Cecchini was DFA’d to make roster room for Justin Wilson when he was signed, but he cleared waivers. I don’t see him on an organizational roster but he was still Mets property at last check. Maybe he’s playing fort nite with Mesoraco?

      • TexasGusCC
        May 24, 2019 at 2:33 pm

        Full Name: Gavin Glenn Christopher Joseph Cecchini

        Status: Active for Syracuse Mets
        (as per MiLB.com)

  5. wilponzi
    May 24, 2019 at 9:25 am

    What’s happened to Gavin Cecchini. He is not on the Syracuse roster. Was he traded, or just quit?

    • TexasGusCC
      May 24, 2019 at 2:40 pm

      Cecchini, who was very active on Twitter, hasn’t Tweeted anything since late August.

      From a piece written on April 3rd:

      “Cecchini, whom the Mets took with the 12th overall pick in the 2012 Draft, has been dealing with an unspecified quad injury, but is currently playing in intrasquad games down in Port St. Lucie (including today). He had 12 plate appearances early in the spring, notching two hits and drawing five walks before he was first sidelined.

      Much speculation had surrounded the 25-year old’s whereabouts when he was excluded from the minors rosters in both Syracuse and Double-A Binghamton, though he remains in the Mets’ system, with his specific affiliate assignment still up in the air.”

  6. May 24, 2019 at 1:32 pm

    We just signed Ervin Santana.

    • Mike Walczak
      May 24, 2019 at 7:17 pm

      And Matt Kemp.

  7. Mike Walczak
    May 24, 2019 at 1:51 pm

    Beefing up AAA with veterans was a very good idea. We knew this would happen. Most amazing, look at the bullpen. I believe there are only three active bullpen pitchers that were on the roster at the beginning of the year, Diaz, Familia and Gsellman.

    Go figure, we get swept by the Marlins and then sweep the Nationals. I hope that we can knock off Detroit.

  8. BVac
    May 24, 2019 at 2:16 pm

    Certainly refreshing to see proven big leaguers in the mix instead of Ty Kelly, Eric Campbell, and Danny Muno.

    • MattyMets
      May 24, 2019 at 2:52 pm

      BVac – that is one area where I give BVW credit. Alderson never paid attention to depth and injuries always ruined the season. Injuries are inevitable. There are very few iron men in modern baseball.

      • Metsense
        May 24, 2019 at 6:36 pm

        I agree that is one area where I give BVW credit.In the past, newly acquired Altherr and Tejada would been starting tonight and was touted as saviiors for thier season. LOL
        BTW the Mets just signed Matt Kemp . In a another development, Syracuse just pull out of the International League and joined the YMCA over-35 league. Tape of 11 pm

  9. Metsense
    May 24, 2019 at 6:50 pm

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