Danny Abriano, SNY.tv | Twitter |
Mets GM Sandy Alderson has placed an emphasis on adding a starting second baseman or third baseman this offseason -- with his stated preference being to bring in a second baseman in order to keep Asdrubal Cabrera at third base. Cabrera recently said he prefers to play second base, but it remains to be seen if his desire will have any impact on what the Mets do.
Here's a look at the players the Mets are reportedly considering...
3B/1B Todd Frazier, free agent
The 31-year-old Frazier, who spent the second half of last season with the Yankees, recently said the Mets and Yankees have been in contact with his agents. It seems that Frazier doesn't want to settle for a one-year deal, but a two-year pact could get it done.
He hit .213/.344/.428 with 27 HR in 2017, though his career-low BABIP of .226 suggests he was somewhat unlucky with balls he put in play and that he should see some improvement in 2018 in terms of his batting average. A terrific defender at third base, the acquisition of Frazier would almost certainly mean Cabrera getting his wish to play second base.
INF/OF Josh Harrison, Pirates
In the wake of the Pirates trading RHP Gerrit Cole and OF Andrew McCutchen, Harrison recently asked the Pirates to trade him if they're not serious about contending in 2018. However, the Pirates are in no rush to deal him. The Mets reportedly believe a deal for Harrison can be centered around OF Brandon Nimmo, but feel that price is too high.
The 30-year-old Harrison, who will earn $10 million this season and has team options for 2019 and 2020, hit .272/.339/.432 with a career-high 16 HR in 2017, while playing above-average defense at second base and third base. Harrison, who also plays the outfield, would be a terrific fit for the Mets, but they shouldn't deal Nimmo to make it happen.
INF Eduardo Nunez, free agent
The Mets have only recently been connected to the 30-year-old Nunez, who began his career as a bit-player for the Yankees and has come into his own over the last three seasons. He hit .313/.341/.460 with 12 HR in 114 games last season with the Giants and Red Sox.
One drawback is that Nunez -- who played second base, third base, shortstop, left field, and right field last season -- has been a negative defender at second base the last two seasons.
INF Neil Walker, free agent
Walker, who the Mets traded to the Brewers when they fell out of contention last season, hit .265/.362/.439 with 14 HR in 111 games in 2017. At second base, where he played the bulk of the time, he was worth -5 DRS (defensive runs saved), per FanGraphs.
If the Mets reunite with Walker, it will be seen as more of the same (in the wake of the team re-signing OF Jay Bruce and INF Jose Reyes). However, the Mets' issue last season was pitching, not offense. The legitimate concern regarding Walker would be that he was held back by injuries in 2017 after they limited him to just 113 games in 2016.