Mets Trade Ike Davis To Pirates

Somewhat fittingly, the Mets pass Ike Davis over to Pittsburgh.

Minutes before tonight’s first pitch, it was announced that the Mets traded Ike Davis to the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for AAA reliever Zack Thornton and a player to be named later.

It sounds like this deal was at least in part about making roster room for Chris Young, and further, that because timing was an issue, there’s a good chance that the PTBNL will be more significant than Thornton. How significant is anyone’s guess, but it seems that the Mets and Pirates will continue the discussion — but announcing the deal now allowed the Mets to keep Andrew Brown and Kirk Nieuwenhuis on the roster for the moment while negotiations with Pittsburgh go on.

To be honest, I’m ambivalent about the deal. What’s good about it, is that it establishes Lucas Duda as the starting first baseman — the job is now his to lose.

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. Rev.Al April 18, 2014 at 8:10 pm
    It was time for IKE to get away from N.Y.
    If we got 2 good prospects in the trade… I’m O.K. with it.
  2. DanB April 18, 2014 at 9:35 pm
    Personally, I felt the Mets needed two more years, at least, to make a judgement about Ike. Excuse me as I roll my eyes. Does it really matter whether we trade Ike or Duda? What matters is that the Mets still don’t have a quality first baseman. The real player acquisition I want to talk about is when the Mets get a quality first baseman. By the way, with all due respects to Rev. Al, but I find it hard to believe the Mets are getting two good prospects for Ike Davis. I would be happy with one and I don`t think a 25 year old minor league reliever drafted in the 23rd round is going to be a good prospect. But then again, I am not a player evaluator like some of you are here.
  3. Gene April 19, 2014 at 2:34 am
    I’ve been a Mets fan since 67. Watched some really good teams and some really bad teams through the years. The latest shenanigan of trading Ike Davis is typical of a franchise not knowing where they are at or what they are doing in this point in time. I see progress with the influx of young bred talent and some free agent acquisitions, but the bottom line is the manager blows more games with his decisions than the players do, in my opinion. I want to give Collins the benefit of the doubt, but the reality is that he and his coaching staff don’t get the job done, and that unrealistic positive attitude doesn’t work in today’s game. Let’s face it, the players are spoiled and greedy, and there is no discipline. I still don’t understand why a starting pitcher can’t pitch a complete 9 innings or more to achieve a victory in today’s game. Can the Mets buy Joe Madden’s contract so our young talent can be schooled to play professional baseball. Great Luck Ike Davis. I’m sure you’re happy to be gone!
  4. meticated April 19, 2014 at 5:34 am
    ok, I understand the reasoning of trading Davis, but now sadly there are no Jewish ballplayers in NY…Ike is no Hank Greenburg by any stretch, but it personally felt good to have a representative from my tribe hit one deep. Moreover, its entirely predictable that Ike is going to struggle initially, and then amazingly find his groove again…put up 30 HR seasons for multiple years…methinks, he is destined to be this decades Amos Otis v.2…
    • NormE April 19, 2014 at 3:38 pm
      Meticated,
      You still have Josh Satin for whatever it’s worth.
  5. Victor April 19, 2014 at 10:23 am
    Joe – I am actually disappointed that the Mets gave up on Ike. They never really gave him a chance to prove himself this year. While he may never become what was projected of him given his 2010, 2011 and 2nd half 2012 performance, I still think he was a better option than Duda for a variety of reasons. Duda has a terrible track record of hitting with men on base and most of his HRs seem to be with no one on. While Duda is not a terrible 1st baseman, Ike is definitely the better defender despite his drop-off from last year. I think this was all about the $$$, and may signify another move by the team. At least, we hope so. That said, I will root for Ike to prove the Mets wrong and that he ends up raking this year, except when he’s playing against his old teammates!
    • Joe Janish April 19, 2014 at 10:53 pm
      They didn’t give him a chance this year, but they gave him every chance for the past four. At some point you have to either figure out what you have or cut bait. I’m surprised it took this long for the Mets to decide whether they wanted to go forward with Davis or Duda — the Mets seem to struggle in understanding the talent they own and see every day.
      • Victor Chu April 21, 2014 at 2:36 pm
        Joe — thanks for your reply. My point is that we all thought Ike turn the table after June 2012 given his performance for the rest of that year. And, while Ike had a horrendous 2013 to start, he did improve (albeit not power-wise) overall after being recalled from AAA later that year, although clearly not to the point that he was a bona-fide clean-up hitter. I’m not saying Ike didn’t have his ups and downs, but it wasn’t like all four years were bad. You said that, “At some point you have to either figure out what you have or cut bait.” At this juncture, why not give Ike through May to man 1B and see what he could do? It’s not like the team is really position to compete for a WC this year with what they have. Also, if the Mets were prepared to give up on somebody like Ike, then why did the Mets bring in Chris Young? His decline from his peak performance has been even longer, yet the Mets were OK with signing him. As for being “surprised it took this long for the Mets to decide whether they wanted to go forward with Davis or Duda” … it seems like the decision was made at the end of last year and that there really wasn’t a true competition for playing 1B this year, and that Duda was the chosen one all along. Time will tell what was the right decision!
    • Joe Janish April 19, 2014 at 10:59 pm
      Though it did nothing to help his batting average, I have to say that Ike Davis was an absolutely classy individual off the field, and was open, honest, and took full responsibility for his actions when speaking with the media. Many others struggled less in New York and went into a shell and/or shunned the press. Ike Davis answered all the questions, even when at rock bottom — have to give him props for that.
  6. DanB April 19, 2014 at 3:14 pm
    Victor I can understand your preference for Davis over Duda but don’t you think that this debate is a MacGuffin for the real issue and that is neither one should be the starting first baseman. Neither one projects to being a starting first baseman on a playoff team. By the way, the Mets payroll is now under $80 million. Could this lead to the Mets finally signing Drew?
  7. DaveSchneck April 19, 2014 at 3:51 pm
    I respect the opinions above, and my take is that sooner or later someone had to go. I would have kept Ike, but it is debatable and ultimately I agree with Dan B in that at this point 1B is still unresolved. I would have kept Ike over the Dude, and I wish Ike well, but I can’t say that I will be rooting for Ike to prove the Mets wrong. The Dude gets his chance now, and if it doesn’t work out, the Mets will absolutely need to bring in a 1B next year, and one that can hit 4th. Grandy is no #4 hitter, even when (if) his bat wakes up. Yes, the active payroll is below $80 million now, but this continues to be an roster with big holes. Alderson absolutely needs to bring in a closer and a shortstop, and spend some $$$ as needed. Otherwise, the 2015 exhibition season otherwise known as 2014 regular season MLB games will continue.
  8. meticated April 19, 2014 at 7:00 pm
    on second thought…Davis has so many holes in his swing…Swiss cheese is jealous…He needs to go back to tee ball and forget everything …just be natural…He has the most forced mechanics I’ve ever witnessed…obviously a case of even a blind squirrel finds a meatball 32 times in 550 at bats…