Everybody’s favorite pinch and clutch hitter extraordinaire-and always the man right now-Jordany Valdespin, deserves a better fate than by being just a platoon/matchups type player.
Valdespin has proven he has the appropriate feel and moxie for the game and right now the stats are showing it. As of Friday, July 27 Valdespin is sporting a .286/.314/.571 line which equates to an impressive .885 OPS. He also has seven home runs in only 98 at-bats.
The only problem for Valdespin is finding a position to get him some regular playing time.
Valdespin’s natural position is at second base, but with Daniel Murphy residing over there and with him in the midst of hot streak and solid season overall, it’s not likely that Valdespin will get regular playing time there.
Valdespin can also play all outfield positions, but with a rotation that includes Jason Bay, Andres Torres, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Scott Hairston and eventually Lucas Duda once again, Valdespin is often jockeying with the others while biding his time.
There are two options that the Mets should consider to get Valdespin regular playing time:
Either trade Daniel Murphy while the iron is hot (but not for middle reliever) and get Valdespin regular time there, or do the right thing and bench Jason Bay for good (I assume cutting him is out of the equation).
If the Mets can’t get fair value for Murphy, and that’s looking like the case, then Valdespin should get playing time in leftfield.
With Valdespin being a lefty and with the club already sporting a very lefty-heavy lineup, if you start Valdespin then it is imperative that you start Hairston in right to mix up the lineup.
In any event Valdespin deserves more time. It is important to his growth as a player to be getting everyday at-bats. If the Mets are not going to give him the at-bats up in the majors, then maybe they should send him down to Buffalo so he can get routine playing time.
But that’s not what Mets’ fans want and it’s not a position I endorse. We all want to see more of Valdespin and his flair for the dramatic and passion for the game.
With the season heading south, Valdespin’s talents should be on full display as the Mets should get to know what they are dealing with. By Valdespin receiving erratic at-bats right now, the Mets can’t accurately gauge the true value of his worth.
Valdespin will always give you energy, and that is something the Mets desperately need right now.
So, come hell or high water, if the Mets want some passion and energy for the rest of the year, while also figuring how Valdespin fits into the future plans of the team, it would behoove the club for him to get regular playing time.
That’s the least Valdespin –The Man Right Now-deserves at this moment
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