Lowered Expectations: Mets Should Acquire Todd Fraizer

ICYMI, the former Mets GM and hopefully former playboy Steve Phillips surfaced yesterday and suggested the Mets acquire Evan Longoria from Tampa Bay. As we used to say back in the day Stevie, right church, wrong pew. The Mets should definitely acquire a new third baseman, but not one of Longoria’s age (30), injury history and contract status (still owed $110M for the next 7 years).

Also speaking yesterday was White Sox GM Rick Hahn, using the “R” word to describe his team’s status. Just about anyone is available for the right price, including a certain Long Island native who plays third, hits for power and isn’t tied to a long-term commitment.

The Mets should trade Neil Walker, $2.5 million and a minor league pitchers Gabriel Ynoa and Chris Flexen to the ChiSox for Todd Frazier.

Don’t get me wrong, Frazier is no Yoenis Cespedes. He won’t hit for a high average (217/304/486 slash line). He is slow footed. While he has played elsewhere in the field, he is best suited to third base; meaning that other players on the Met roster need to shift to make room for him. Here is what he does do: he hits homeruns. 28 so far this year for the Sox, a year after hitting 35 for the Reds. He is probably the best the Mets can get in their increasingly difficult task of defending their NL crown—at least without sacrificing one of their young starters or a really good prospect. He offers true protection for Cespedes and if Lucas Duda comes back anytime soon, the Mets may have enough power to compensate for an otherwise putrid offense, giving the remnants of starting pitching staff a break from having to be nearly perfect on each outing.

I get the irony of trading for a player who is the 2016 Met offense in a nutshell, but what’s a boy to do? They can’t overhaul the team on the fly and it is way too early, in my estimation at least, to pull the plug on some of the younger regulars who have been struggling this year. Imagine the hue and cry should the Wilmers, the d’Arnauds or the Confortos of the world reach their potential elsewhere.

Frazier is signed through this year at $8.2M. He is arbitration-eligible this offseason and then a Free Agent after 2017. Walker is making $10m and is gone after this year. The White Sox didn’t exactly surrender any jewels from their farm system to get Frazier last year, so they actually take a step forward with Flexen and Ynoa. The Mets can move the Wilmer Flores/Jose Reyes third base platoon to second base. Frazier also serves as a semi-stopgap in 2017 if Cespedes bolts or if David Wright still isn’t ready (or retires).

It’s a relatively safe move and the offer might be better than anything else Hahn might get for Frazier. I’d make this move, would you?

A Mets fan since 1971, Dan spent many summer nights of his childhood watching the Mets on WOR Channel Nine, which his Allentown, PA cable company carried. Dan was present at Game 7 of the 1986 World Series and the Todd Pratt Walkoff Game in 1999. He is also the proud owner of two Shea Stadium seats. Professionally, Dan is a Marketing Manager in the Bulk Materials Handling industry. He lives in Bethlehem PA with his wife and son, neither of whom fully get his obsession with the Mets.
  1. Me July 22, 2016 at 12:34 pm
    A .217 average?

    They already have that, too much of that, actually.

    Flores and Duda could each beat that and just about match the homers.

    Absolutely not worth it.

    • Dan Capwell July 22, 2016 at 12:51 pm
      Except that Duda is out and Flores has 10 dingers so far, including a bunch recently.
      • Me July 22, 2016 at 4:41 pm
        Flores has 10 HRs in 177 AB.
        That projects to around 30 for 500+ ABs.

        And you want to give up Walker and prospects, when we already have someone who profiles the same (or better), is younger and is cheap and controllable?

        • Me July 22, 2016 at 4:43 pm
          Not to mention, we can’t over-commit to 3B when we don’t know if Wright still wants to plan.
  2. Frank from Jersey July 22, 2016 at 1:05 pm
    I can’t imagine they give frazier up for the package you mentioned even with his atrocious BA
    • argonbunnies July 22, 2016 at 2:18 pm
      Yeah. This proposal is a salary dump move, not a rebuilding move. White Sox can get better than Ynoa and Flexen, plus have no need for Walker if they’re punting 2016.

      Plus Frazier isn’t overpaid.

      NImmo + Plawecki would probably be the minimum package they’d consider.

      • Dan Capwell July 22, 2016 at 3:36 pm
        I’d trade Nimmo and Plaw to them for Frazier as long as they took Walker as well.
        • argonbunnies July 22, 2016 at 4:34 pm
          I think Plaw & Nimmo for Frazier is interesting. I’d consider it. Main worry is low OBP. Guys who make as many outs as Frazier don’t really help you that much. Last 2 years: .241/.307/.493. Wilmer Flores, last 2 years: .262/.302/.426. It’s an upgrade, but if you think Flores is still improving and Frazier has peaked (which I do), then it’s not a huge one, and Frazier costs a lot more.

          I don’t think Nimmo or Plawecki are ever going to be major contributors, but I dunno if that type of upgrade is worth even the teeny tiny chance that either kid blossoms.

          Separately, why are you so eager to ditch Walker? Who do you want playing second?

  3. argonbunnies July 22, 2016 at 2:21 pm
    How does this help the Mets? Is adding power at third base while sacrificing power and defense at second base really an improvement? Neil Walker’s cold right now, but has been hitting in some tough luck and is arguably a better all-around player than Frazier.

    I like the outside-the-box thinking, but not this move.

  4. argonbunnies July 22, 2016 at 2:21 pm
    Since we’re talking trades here, I’ll repeat my idea from yesterday’s thread: Antonio Bastardo and cash for Joe Kelly.
    • Dan Capwell August 2, 2016 at 1:04 pm
  5. DaveSchneck July 23, 2016 at 12:09 am
    Not big on Frasier or Longoria. My strong preference is for a back end bullpen arm and a back end starter without giving up too much. I know the offense is weak, but I’d still go for the pitching and only part with fringe prospects.
  6. Gregg from Hoboken July 23, 2016 at 8:41 am
    There’s no reason the White Sox would make this move. Frazier’s more productive than Walker and Ynoa/Flexen aren’t enough to make this enticing. Why would a team in the White Sox’ position pick up a short-term rental player in Walker anyway?
  7. david July 28, 2016 at 7:40 pm
    After another tough loss and woeful hitting on base with RISP, I think Mets fans need to realize that this time needs more than Todd Frazier to make the playoffs.

    The lineup as constructed by Sandy is not working. It is a failure plain and simple. The smart move for Sandy and the Wilpons is accept this fact and deal from the roster, including some starters. The only reason not to is stubbornness (Sandy) and cheapness (Wilpons). I’d like to think Sandy is smarter than he is stubborn and is proposing some trades to bring in guys that hit with RISP. As for the Wilpons, with all that playoff/World series extra money and this year’s jump in attendance, they have no excuse not to open up the wallet. Take on a bad contract for a good player. But most importantly, shake up the everyday lineup because its been broken from day 1.

    Admittedly the D Wright situation started the trouble, batting him too high out of respect for past achievements. Walker should have been installed as the #2 hitter as soon as possible, but instead Terry bats him clean up which is silly. Yoenis is your clean up guy – over and out. With 1, 2 and 4 set Terry needs to do a better job with what he has unless and until someone in the front office or owner’s luxury box wakes up and smells the coffee.

    Here is an idea – how about TDA in the #3 hole? I like it but it will never happen and his value continues to plummet. He is a hitter so let him hit. And for the love of the almighty put Cabrera in the 8 hole and leave him there.

  8. argonbunnies July 29, 2016 at 2:50 pm
    How about:

    SS – Jose Reyes
    1B – James Loney
    C – Travis d’Arnaud
    RF – Yoenis Cespedes
    3B – Kelly Johnson
    2B – Neil Walker
    LF – Michael Conforto
    CF – Juan Lagares