Danny Abriano, SNY.tv | Twitter |
We took our first crack at predicting the Mets' Opening Day 26-man roster about a month and a half ago. Since then, Dellin Betances has signed a free agent deal (he was in our initial prediction, so we'll give ourselves a pat on the back for that one).
Beyond the Betances signing, the Mets have made a bunch of minor league signings since then, with the Matt Adams deal being the most notable.
Also of note is that Yoenis Cespedes and Jed Lowrie are still on the roster, which could mean the Mets being at a disadvantage when it comes to the composition of their bench.
Here's our roster prediction 2.0...
Wilson Ramos, C
Pete Alonso, 1B
Robinson Cano, 2B
Amed Rosario, SS
Jeff McNeil, 3B
J.D. Davis, LF
Brandon Nimmo, CF
Michael Conforto, RF
With Mets target Starling Marte having been traded to the Diamondbacks, the eight starters above remain unchanged from our roster prediction 1.0. And with Marte off the board, it's hard to see a scenario -- barring injury -- where the above changes between now and the start of the season.
In talks for Marte before Pittsburgh shipped him to Arizona, the Mets turned down packages that included one centered around J.D. Davis and another revolving around Brandon Nimmo. That should tell you a bit about how those two players are viewed within the Mets' offices.
Nothing has changed here from our first prediction.
With six starting pitchers for five spots, it remains hard to see a scenario where Michael Wacha doesn't head to the bullpen as the odd-man out. Sure, there is a chance Steven Matz -- who had a brief stint in the 'pen last year -- could wind up out there. But it doesn't seem likely. And Matz is unsurprisingly on record saying he views himself as a starter.
So barring a disastrous spring training performance from Matz or Rick Porcello (who is making a good deal more than Wacha), those two are great bets to round out the back of the rotation.
Yoenis Cespedes, OF
Jake Marisnick, OF
Luis Guillorme, INF
Matt Adams, 1B
Rene Rivera, C
Our initial prediction had Sam Haggerty and Tomas Nido as two of the bench pieces. That is no longer the case.
So sub out Haggerty (no longer in the organization) and add in Matt Adams. And sub out Nido and add Rene Rivera, who is Noah Syndergaard's favorite catcher and is back on a minor league deal.
We'll continue to predict that Jed Lowrie and Dominic Smith will be traded (a Smith trade makes even more sense with Adams now on the team), but get more specific this time. They'll be dealt in a package deal to the Rangers that brings back low-level prospects.
This unit is identical to the one that was predicted on Dec. 23 -- before the Mets added Betances.
Now that Betances is on board, there doesn't seem to be much ambiguity when it comes to how the bullpen will shake out.
Barring injury, seven of the above pitchers will be in the bullpen. And barring a surprise with the starting rotation, Wacha will round it out the 'pen.