Mets Get PTBNL from Red Sox
Anyone else out there not paying attention to Mets news over this past weekend?
In case you missed it:
On Saturday, the Red Sox sent to the Mets one of the two players to be named later in the Billy Wagner deal: minor league first baseman Eddie Lora. I wonder if this announcement was made on the Saturday before Labor Day specifically to get it buried in the media, and to avoid backlash in the blogosphere — since most fans were too busy at barbecues to care what was going on in Metsland.
But then, I’m a conspiracy theorist.
In any case, there you have it: the Mets get Lora now and most likely Chris Carter after the season.
Lora is a 20-year-old born in New York City but officially Dominican who stands 6’2″, weighs 230 lbs., hits from both sides of the plate, throws left, and plays first base. He’s hitting .222 through 34 games in rookie ball for the GCL Red Sox. He batted .300 last year with 5 HR in 120 at-bats for the Dominican Summer League Red Sox in 2008. The scouting report says he has a “great frame” with “high power potential” but that “he strikes out far too much”.
Before you get all crazy over his .222 batting average, remember it’s a very small sample and he’s only 20 years old. The key thing here is to compare Lora to what the Mets might have obtained had they offered Wagner arbitration, he signed elsewhere, and thereby netted the Mets two picks in next year’s June draft.
It’s possible they would have drafted a raw kid with power potential out of high school or junior college in the first two rounds. Who is a comp, I have no idea because I’m not up on the amateur prospects. What is almost a certainty is that they would not have drafted both a raw 20-year-old AND a replacement-level player who could step in and compete for first base and/or left field in 2010 — and that is essentially what they will get out of Chris Carter (assuming he is the other PTBNL). So in the end is it a good deal for the Mets? Hard to say.
On the one hand, two draft picks might have more bottled potential for the future. On the other hand, the Mets will have an MLB-ready player competing in spring training, and have a strapping slugger, in their organization right now. Considering the dearth of power hitters in the Mets’ farm system, Lora is a welcome addition.
We won’t know how “good” this deal turns out for the Mets for at least a year, likely more. In the meantime we can only put our trust in the scouts who saw and recommended these two first basemen.