Well, that has disaster written all over it doesn’t it?
While Jason Bay is a good defensive left fielder, he is not physically and-you can also argue- emotionally equipped to handle such a drastic move.
I guess the idea is to get solid power numbers from your center fielder and upgrade offensively at the corner outfield positions with more productive hitters or ‘sluggers.’ That’s an asinine and illogical approach if there ever was one.
And what about Angel Pagan? I know some people are down on him amidst rumors that he might be non-tendered in the offseason, but he is slowly but surely coming out of his own funk. When healthy, and that appears to be the case right now, Pagan is a serviceable center fielder
Make no mistake, Bay’s contract is an albatross. The Mets will just to have to suck it up and play Bay in left field or at the very least platoon him.
I suppose this tactic was maybe used as motivation. It just so happens after this proposal that Bay had one of his best games in weeks in last night’s 3-2 win over the Marlins. Bay, who was mired in a brutal 2-45 slump prior to Wednesday’s games, went 3-4 with a double and an RBI. But, just how many more motivational tactics does Collins have up his sleeve before he’s forced to deal with the cold harsh reality that Bay is unlikely to succeed in Queens? Collins probably thought along the same lines when he brought up the terrible idea of putting Mike Pelfrey in the closer’s role next year.
I shouldn’t have to rehash the disappointing season (or career with the Mets for that matter) Bay is having. As of Thursday, Bay is batting .234 with only nine home runs and 44 RBI’s. Bay has been a colossal bust and switching positions will not turn his fortunes around. It could conceivably make things worse.
Do we need to be reminded again just how important defense is at Citi Field, and particularly how much ground the center fielder needs to cover? This is where we collectively undervalue Pagan.
I guess this suggestion is a way to get Daniel Murphy on the field somewhere, presumably in left field. It’s assumed that when Ike Davis comes back healthy that he’ll be back at first with the emerging Lucas Duda entrenched in right field. I’m all for getting Murphy in the lineup, but we shouldn’t compromise the fielding of this unit by putting Murphy in left field when he has already shown he can’t reliably handle the job.
The only way to get any positive production out of Bay is to straight up platoon him with a decent lefty slugger. Remember, vs. lefties, Bay is batting .293 this year with three home runs and 11 RBI’s in 92 at-bats. Conversely, Bay is batting a miserable .208 in 284 at-bats vs. righties.
It really is sad that this is the role that Bay may be reduced to. However, what would be sadder would be putting Bay in center field.