Mets Risking Almost Everything With Peter Alonso

The Mets made a blockbuster deal with the Seattle Mariners where they gave up two former first round draft picks in Jarred Kelenic and Justin Dunn. At the moment, the Mets are in the midst of trying to negotiate a trade to obtain J.T. Realmuto. In those discussions, we have heard the Mets potentially trading any one or a combination of Michael Conforto, Brandon Nimmo, Amed Rosario, Andres Gimenez, Ronny Mauricio, or Mark Vientos.

What is interesting is we have not yet heard Peter Alonso‘s name attached to any rumor. Seeing the power and arguably unprecedented exit velocities combined with his status as a clear-cut T0p 100 prospect, it would be really hard to believe neither the Mariners nor the Marlins would have any interest in Alonso.

This would lead you to believe the Mets are making Alonso untouchable in trade discussions. With the Mets seemingly having penciled him in as their 2019 first baseman, you could understand the idea. On the other hand, why would the Mets make him more untouchable than their other players or prospects?

Looking at the infield right now, you could win by playing Robinson Cano, Jeff McNeil, Todd Frazier, and Rosario in the same infield. Certainly, that infield and lineup would look all the better with Realmuto.

If you don’t want Cano, Frazier, or even McNeil being your everyday first baseman, there are still free agent first baseman available. Mark Reynolds, who has a 103 OPS+ over the last three years, is available. Matt Adams is a platoon bat who has a 119 wRC+ against right-handed pitching over the past two years. This is also a scenario where bringing Marwin Gonzalez aboard makes sense. With first base effectively vacant, you could have sufficient playing time between him and McNeil at first base, second base, third base, and the outfield.

There are also former Mets like Daniel Murphy and Wilmer Flores, who we know can handle first base and New York. If you are so inclined, you could probably even sign Asdrubal Cabrera the job. He has shown himself to be a different hitter in a Mets uniform, and it is possible playing first over a middle infield position keeps him fresher and healthier.

Arguably, any of these options are better than Alonso. While there may be some flaws, it is notable that Steamer has projected Alonso to hit .241/.318/.458. It is interesting to note Fangraphs Depth Charts comes to the same slash line albeit while giving Alonso a higher projected WAR.

Again, these projections may be flawed, but they may also not be. That’s the risk when you play an unproven rookie at first base.

The bigger risk for the Mets is trading Conforto or Nimmo. This is not an organization blessed with any outfield depth. Beyond them is Juan Lagares, who is injury prone, Yoenis Cespedes, who may not even play next year, and a collection of prospects who will likely not be in a position to contribute at the Major League level. Looking at the free agent class, you see a number of players who have considerable age or health concerns. Mostly, you see a group who will most likely not contribute at the level Conforto or Nimmo will next season.

That brings us back to Alonso. If the Mets haven’t already, shouldn’t they put his name on the table to see if that moves the needle on Realmuto? After all, the Mets window is likely two years, maybe three. While Alonso is very, very intriguing, he’s not a sure thing, and you can go get a first baseman who can produce for you while simultaneously getting production from Conforto and Nimmo while watching Rosario build off his improved second half.

Overall, when you break it all down, you really have to question the Mets seemingly counting on Alonso instead of one of their players who have actually produced and shown an ability to improve at the Major League level. That plan becomes all the more dubious when you consider the free agents available and the depth at certain areas of the Mets farm system.

12 thoughts on “Mets Risking Almost Everything With Peter Alonso”

  1. Luis Venitucci says:

    Robinson Cano, Jeff McNeil, Todd Frazier, and Rosario…There are almost zero walks in that group..all hackers with a low OBP, which has been a Mets issue for years…I feel that Cano will be of little help

    1. metsdaddy says:

      Cano and Frazier are not low OBP guys.

    2. Fitz Cave says:

      McNeil .381 OBP in 248 PA would have been 14th highest in MLB if he qualified.

  2. OldBackstop says:

    I think Alonso has a very high ceiling, maybe as high as Conforto. Nimmo and McNeil might have sold their souls for their 2018 numbers, and we will never see that from them again. Rosario…..well, take a look at his 2018 dWAR….worse of any starting NL shortstop. D was supposed to be a given with him, but there are some clanging bells there…

    1. metsdaddy says:

      Alonso is nowhere near the player Conforto is or was projected to be

  3. oldbackstop says:

    I would gladly trade Rosario + someone not contributing yet at Citi and not named Gimenez for Realmuto.

    Conforto, Nimmo, pitching…well, than we are just making holes we have to fill anyway.

    Rosario had a troubled year with the glove. Gimenez is the future there. Rosario might be at his highest value right now.

    If they make that trade — Rosario + for Realmuto, then get a utility IF who can bridge at SS to Gimenez, we are in good shape. Replacing Rosario’s 0.8 2018 WAR will not be difficult.

    Imagine if we are competitive in September with McNeil, Gimenez, Alonso, Conforto and Nimmo in the lineup? Lotta youth to extend our pitchers around.

  4. oldbackstop says:

    To circle back after a second read — I agree…I hate anyone that comes up asd a first base prospect. That likely means they only have DH to deteriorate to on the spectrum. First base is the easiest position to fill from within (Frazier, McNeil, Cano, D’Arnaud….anybody) or add some offense from outside. I had this issue with Dom Smith as well.

  5. oldbackstop says:

    I’ll copy this over when you do a Ramos thread. but…jumping ahead to Ramos….couldn’t be happier. My daughters went nuts, they had been fearing the loss of their matinee idols Thor, Nimmo or Conforto (don’t underestimate that in the future of the franchise.)

    We got Ramos for his Age 31 and 32, not too aged, not Age 33 and 34 as discussed with Grandal. No draft pick or int’l bucks as with Grandal.

    Ramos lost some time but still averaged over 100 games the last three years, Second among all catchers in average and slg since 2016. Two of his best OPS years have been in the past three years, Better at throwing out runners than anyone we have had in awhile. Caught stealing percentage last three yearsm Realmuto 33%, Ramos 32%. All Mets in 2018, 21%. That turns something like a dozen bases into outs, plus the guys that don’t go out of respect. League CS% in 2018 was 28%, so we go from minus to plus.

    Pitch framing….is ******* for children and and elves and Santa Claus and people that have to sell new statistics products, but that works in Ramos favor too. Like fairy dust and magic beans, I assume, if they were measured.

    This saves, hopefully, as my daughters keep saying, Thor, Conforto, Rosario, Nimmo, and who knows they’d toss for a trade that might only yield a marginally better catcher.

    Last three years:
    Realmuto: .286/.338/.454/.792 4.0 WAR One All Star appearance, career 162 game projected power: 18 hrs, 73 rbis
    Ramos: .298/.343/.483/.826 3.9 WAR Two All Star appearances last three years, career 162 game projected power 23 hrs, 91 rbis

    Guaranteed money: both committed two years,
    Ramos $19.5 mil, plus Ramos $2.5 m buyout in 2021
    Realmuto estimated $6.1 mil 2019 arb, boost on that in 2020, call it $14 over the 2 years, $5-6 less than Ramos,
    Minus a few mil if the Mets find a new home for Plawecki ($1.3m) or D’Arnaud ($3,7m)

    To thow another financial curve in, if a trade had gone down and we landed Realmuto, it seems a given that we would have received only him and prospects while giving up a Thor/Nimmo/Rosario/Conforto. So that means a replacement vet with a price tag on him.

    NOW….I could, in a weaker way, argue the other side of this. Realmuto is younger. His WARs are slightly better, although those are hand grenade numbers if you actually look at hos the sausage is made.

    Anyway……couldn’t be happier.

    Now what?

    — — a lefty arm for the pen….comments were made by the brass that big money wasn’t going there, so not Britton or Miller. Ollie! lol….a hundred candidates, Hopefully Zamora steps up. Maybe the better play is to add a solid number three type SP and slip Vargas back there.
    — a utility OFer with 5 tools, Probably aging, of course, because we won’t pay for fresh tools, but a pinchrunner with some SB
    threat, a guy who is a better CFer that Nimmo and Conforto, and a better corner OFer than the guys that will wander out there in advance of Cespedes return like Smith, TJ Rivera, Plawecki, D’Arnaud, etc. Maybe trade one of those guys, or (cough) Curtis Granderson) who had a nice little year.

    Ahhhh…..he’s done in CF and stealing bases, but love Grandy.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      Pitch framing is real

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