At MetsBlog, Ted Berg opens our eyes to the second base conundrum — mainly, the fact that the Mets have three second basemen who don’t produce very much offensively, two of which happen to be godawful in the field as well.
Personally, I’d like to believe Luis Castillo can be a better OBP guy and therefore an ideal #2 hitter behind Jose Reyes — then his lack of range would be more palatable.
Interestingly — though I doubt it matters for this season — Dan Murphy has moved from third base to the keystone. We mentioned just last week that it would be no surprise to see him move to the outfield — but this makes even better sense.
Speaking of moving young infielders around, Reese Havens looks like he might have the bat to move quickly through the system. He has a nice short stride, compact and quick stroke, and is hitting with power in Brooklyn. Of course, he’s a 21-year-old playing against kids who just started shaving, and he has yet to play the field, but I really like what I see from his swing and his approach. I hope the Mets promote him to A-ball before the end of the season, to see how he handles more advanced pitching. My guess is he’ll be moved to second base as well, eventually. If Havens or Murphy get on the super fast track, Castillo could be an expensive utility man in the very near future.
For those of you worried we would lose Chris Aguila, do not despair — he cleared waivers and returned safely to New Orleans. Since his demotion, Aguila is 6-for-10 and hit his 18th and 19th homers. Some guys are labeled “AAAA” for a reason.
On the injury front, Angel Pagan is likely getting surgery and is done for the season, Trot Nixon is out for at least four weeks after hernia surgery, El Duque is back on the shelf, Pedro may or may not pitch next weekend, Ryan Church is out “indefinitely”, no one knows what’s going on with Jason Vargas, Matt Wise or Tony Armas Jr., and we think that Ambiorix Burgos is throwing bullpens.
Oh, and Billy Wagner may or may not be getting an MRI on his “tight shoulder”. As much as some fans can’t stomach Wags, or feel he can’t close the deal in big games, you have to admit the Mets are up the creek without him handling the ninth. And a shoulder issue would explain Billy’s sudden dropoff in speed — yeah, 95 MPH is still hummin’, but this is a guy who was 97-99 a year ago. There’s a BIG difference between 95 and 99 … just as there is a difference between 89 and 93 (one is “non-prospect”, the other is “sign on the dotted line”).