Why Does Sandy Get A Pass on Murphy And Turner?
Ever since the Mets parted ways with Justin Turner and Daniel Murphy, it is as if the Mets former second baseman have made it a point to show the Mets why they were wrong to get rid of them. Not only are both drastically improved players, but they also make it a point to beat up on the Mets.
Since joining the Dodgers in 2014, Turner is a .309/.381/.509 hitter who hit 27 homers and 90 RBI last season accumulating a 16.9 WAR. His 147 wRC+ is the best in baseball in that time frame among Major League third baseman. In his 21 regular season games against the Mets, Turner is hitting .290/.380/.551 with six doubles, four homers, and 12 RBI.
As we remember from the 2015 NLDS, he was the Dodgers offense hitting .526/.550/.842 with six doubles, and four RBI. Fortunately for the Mets, they had Murphy, who had one the best postseason runs in Major League history. Unfortunately, the Mets have parted ways with Murphy as well.
Since leaving the Mets, Murphy has become an MVP candidate. In one plus seasons, Murphy has hit .342/.390/.585 with 72 doubles, seven triples, 39 homers, and 159 RBI with an 8.4 WAR. He leads all major league second baseman in batting average, OBP, OPS, doubles, and wRC+. Simply put, he’s the best hitting second baseman in the majors.
He’s put that on display in his games against the Mets. In 30 games against the Mets, Murphy is hitting .388/.438/.698 with 10 doubles, a triple, eight homers, and 29 RBI.
Each and every time Turner and Murphy batter the Mets, the debate is sparked over why the Mets let both players walk in the first place.
The defenders of Sandy Alderson fall back on the position that no one could have reasonably foresaw the production from either one of these players. In his four years with the Mets, Turner was a .265/.326/.370 hitter who was nothing more than a utility player. Murphy was a much better hitter than Turner with the Mets hitting .288/.331/.424. There were spurts with Murphy where he was a 2014 All Star and his 2015 postseason run, but you’d be hard pressed to argue he’d be a better hitter than Jose Altuve and Robinson Cano.
So yes, you could point to those stats and say no one could have foreseen Turner and Murphy becoming the best hitters at their position since leaving the Mets. However, why is this is a defense of Sandy Alderson?
Isn’t Alderson tasked with identifying talented players and predicting who will improve and who will regress? Shouldn’t it be part of his job to put coaches in place that best helps cultivate the talent on his roster? More importantly, how could it be a General Manager whiffs on evaluating two players who were under his control? Put another way, how is it that Sandy Alderson didn’t know what he had in Turner and Murphy?
We can make all the excuses we want for him, but it doesn’t change the fact he let two extremely talented players, who were with his team, slip out from under their fingers. Even if you argue the other General Managers didn’t see this coming, those other General Managers did not have Turner and Murphy on their roster.
Worse yet, the Mets need help now at second and third base right now. More than that, they need an answer for those positions going forward. It’s time to stop giving Sandy a pass for his failure to see what Turner and Murphy would become. After all, that is literally what his job is as a General Manager.