Tag: kelly shoppach

Mets Fan Window Shopping: Catcher

It’s clear the Mets need a catcher. Actually, they need two catchers — a starter, and a backup. Josh Thole is a really nice guy, and he works really hard, but he’s not an everyday catcher on a championship club, and he might not even be a backup on a championship club. Most second-string backstops offer at least one plus MLB tool; generally, it’s either a strong defensive skill or a power bat. Sometimes, a second-string catcher is just average all-around. Unfortunately, Thole meets none of these characteristics. Offensively, he offers zero power and has steadily regressed in every other batting skill. Defensively, he’s hit his ceiling as below-average all-around; some would argue that his game calling, lack of leadership, and inability to handle pitchers is detrimental.

The Mets might try to trade for a catcher, but right now we’ll do some window-shopping on the free-agent market.


Blog Roundup: Dickey Goes for 17th W

Having won their past two series, (break up the Mets!) New York heads down to Amazing Technicolor Marlins Park for a series with the Marlins.  Miami followed up their offseason spending spree with a comical, and somewhat predictable, fire sale at the trade deadline.  The Marlins are one organization that even Mets fans can point at and laugh.

With most of the drama gone for the Mets, however, we can sit on the edge of our seats to see if R.A. Dickey can become the Mets’ first 20-game winner since Frank Viola.  We all know by now that wins and losses don’t mean all that much when evaluating a starting pitcher, but it would be a nice achievement because 1) It would be a nice reward for R.A. Dickey for a job well done this year, and 2) It simply isn’t done a whole lot anymore.

With that said, onto the Blogs:

  • On the Black examines R.A.’s chances of getting to 20 wins.  Also, check out his 50th anniversary bobblehead collection.
  • Mets360 breaks down Dickey’s year, and breaks down all of the Mets SPs by xFIP.
  • MMO has the latest minor league news, including the still red-hot Wilmer Flores.
  • Metstradamus knows who he’s voting for this November.
  • Amazin’ Avenue finds out what part of the field Kelly Shoppach likes to hit the ball the most. (Hint: It rhymes with “heft.”)
  • MetsCetera has details on “A Night With Ike Davis,” which benefits children’s cancer research.

Enjoy the linkage, and keep following R.A. Dickey and the Mets on Mets Today.


What Kelly Shoppach Brings to the Mets

In case you missed it, the Mets acquired catcher Kelly Shoppach from the Boston Red Sox, in return for a player to be named later.

There was a time that I thought trading for Shoppach made a lot of sense for the Mets — back in March of 2008, when he was 28 years old (check out that post and note a certain LHP that was on the block at the time; shame on you, Walnutz!). I also thought it would have been great if the Mets traded for Shoppach in 2009, when the Indians dealt him to the Rays instead. But of course, I wasn’t alone — many Mets fans and bloggers felt that Shoppach would have been a nice addition behind the dish, back when he was on the right side of 30.

Finally, the Mets get Shoppach, but he’s now 32 years old; he’ll be 33 shortly after Opening Day in 2013. Considering the Mets are presumably rebuilding with youth, does this deal make sense?


Kelly Shoppach Traded to Rays

kellyshopIn the past week, Ed at MetsFever, DJ Short, and Ted Berg all discussed Indians catcher Kelly Shoppach, who would become available if he were non-tendered.

Before I could weigh in on the subject, however, the Indians traded Shoppach to the Tampa Bay Rays.

As a free agent, I liked the idea of 29-year-old Kelly Shoppach — much more than I like the thought of Bengie Molina. But that ship has now sailed, so forget it.

However, whenever one door closes, another opens, right? And with the acquisition of Shoppach, the Rays have to do something with incumbent catcher Dioner Navarro. A-ha !

Navarro hits from both sides of the plate, has a strong arm, and was an All-Star in 2008. Oh, did I mention he’s only 25 years old?

The downside to Navarro is he had an awful year at the plate in 2009, hitting only .218. However, his impressive 2008 season suggests that he has offensive skills — maybe all he needs is a change in scenery to see them return. Again, he’s only 25, so there’s plenty of time to make a comeback. After his awful ’09, there’s a good chance that the Rays non-tender Navarro. If so, he’ll become a free agent, in which case, I’d hope the Mets would at least make an inquiry. After all, switch-hitting All-Star catchers in their mid-20s don’t grow on trees.