Hudson to Twins, Kennedy to Nationals

ohudGold Glove second baseman Orlando Hudson has signed a one-year deal with the Minnesota Twins, prompting the Nationals to sign Adam Kennedy as their second sacker.

Thus, it appears that Mets fans will endure another year of Luis Castillo at second base.

Yes, there are delusional fans still clinging to the fantasy that the Reds will trade Brandon Phillips for Omir Santos, but I wouldn’t count on it. Castillo is most likely Jose Reyes’ partner at the keystone come Opening Day.

Is it such a terrible thing?

From the perspective that Castillo’s range has deteriorated significantly in recent years, yes, it’s too bad the Mets couldn’t find someone else to handle the position. Further, it’s a shame they couldn’t get a replacement considering that Jerry Manuel may consider batting Castillo somewhere other than second in the lineup — the only spot where he provides value.

But otherwise, I don’t see the return of Castillo as a reason for the Mets to fail in 2010. Rather, his presence on the roster represents a massive failure of the front office.

The Mets decided early on that Castillo had to be moved. Despite the need for several pitchers (starters and relievers), a power-hitting outfielder, a starting catcher, and a legitimate first baseman, the Mets chose to focus on moving Castillo as an offseason priority. As a result, enormous time and effort was spent throughout the winter trying to trade the fan’s favorite scapegoat. It didn’t matter that there were much more glaring issues on the roster. It didn’t matter that, in a season full of injuries, Castillo was one of only three players on the club to appear in 140+ games. It didn’t matter that Castillo was second on the team (to David Wright) in batting average, runs scored, hits, stolen bases, and OBP. What mattered was that the fan base didn’t like him, and the Mets are in the business of selling tickets.

So now, after three cold months of trying to trade a player the Mets didn’t necessarily need to trade, they remain “stuck” with him. In addition, they still have major question marks in the starting rotation and the bullpen, they don’t have a starting catcher, and they are committed to a first baseman who may or may not ever be better than Jason Phillips.

But they do have Jason Bay!

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. gary s. February 5, 2010 at 11:50 am
    can’t wait till we play the yankees this year and we have a one run lead with the bases loaded and 2 outs in the ninth and a high pop up is hit to second base….i guess omar’s plan was to try and trade castillo the entire offseason at the cost of making any other deals (pitcher, catcher,loogy)and still have castillo at second when the season starts.looks like i have to give omar a thumbs up on the “plan”..MISSION ACCOMPLISHED OMAR!!
  2. murph February 5, 2010 at 12:49 pm
    Hudson keeps signing 1-year deals so he becomes available to the Mets each off season.

    Good thing the Mets locked up Castillo for 4 years.

    Prediction: The Mets sign Hudson towards the end of his career, when his skills start to decline.

  3. Mike February 5, 2010 at 1:11 pm
    Hey murph, I direct your attention to this:
    Where you will clearly see his skills are already beginning to deteriorate. In fact he was replaced by RONNY BELLIARD by LA by the time the playoffs arrived. O is not the savior the Mets missed out on two years in a row. At age 32 he is going to get worse every year from here on out. The Mets won’t sign him unless they unload Castillo after this year and even then expect a 2 year deal with an option at best, but he is already “at the end of his career” so to say “towards the end of his career” is to say they signed him this year because he is certainly closer to the twilight of his career than the start.
  4. Andy February 5, 2010 at 2:58 pm
    Does nobody like Felipe Lopez? I don’t understand why so many in the Metsphere have viewed this off-season as Castillo v. Hudson. Lopez is younger, about as good a hitter as Castillo and better than Hudson, and still a free agent. I guess his defense is a problem, but with Castillo and Hudson both deteriorating defensively I don’t see that Lopez would be much worse.
  5. micalpalyn February 5, 2010 at 5:50 pm
    1. O-Dog was LA MVP the first two months.

    2. agreed: I cant see what the knock is on Lopez.

  6. murph February 5, 2010 at 9:24 pm
    Hey Mike,
    It not the intention of my post to be pro-Orlando Hudson. I know he is no savior.
    I was just pointing out that he reportedly expressed desire to be a Met and signed 1-year deals two years in a row, which will make him available again next off season. The point of my post was a good-natured rip at the Mets front office, and that if they did get him, it would be years too late.

    But I checked out your link to baseball-reference.
    And again, although I am not pro-Orlando Hudson,
    I do not “clearly see his skills are already beginning to deteriorate”.

    I see his batting average in each of the last 4 years is greater than his career average.
    I see in 2009 he had his 2nd highest totals in hits and runs scored.
    Fielding wise, he only made 8 errors in 2009, and he was an all-star and gold glove.

    cheers, Murph.