Mets Need To Keep Michael Conforto

When Michael Conforto declined the qualifying offer, the presumption has been that ended his New York Mets career. If so, that’s a mistake.

Over his seven year career, Conforto has a 124 OPS+. He’s also put up 5 OAA in RF and a 9 OAA in left. On any given season, you can and should expect that 120+ OPS+ with a 1+ OAA.

That’s a good MLB player. Yes, we get Mets fans wanted more and got frustrated. Nonsense narratives emerged that he’s not good or clutch because of it. Many just sang a new player for its own sake.

People say that despite getting burned again and again with that juvenile mindset. It’s really better to be somewhat frustrated with a good player who can handle New York than a simply worse player.

We also know Conforto is capable of greatness. We saw it in the World Series. We saw it before his injury in 2016. We saw it in 2017. After that injury, we saw it begin to re-emerge at the end of 2019 and all of 2020.

He’s coming off a year where he got off to a slow start due to COVID and injuries. It took a while, but Conforto was Conforto again to close out the season.

In the second half, Conforto hit .252/.347/.445. Over his last 53 games, he hit .275/.372/.461. We know that Conforto and know he can be that for a full season. We know he can and probably will grow from there with a much better hitting coach.

Assuredly, Mets fans want the flashier makes. They don’t quite make sense for the Mets.

Nick Castellanos can’t play the outfield (-42 career OAA in RF), and he had startling home/road splits. Like Castellanos, Kris Bryant is a better hitter, but he has similar defensive issues. Over the last three years, Bryant has a -7 OAA at third and -4 OAA in the outfield.

For a team whose success last year was mostly predicated on pitching and defense, Castellanos and Bryant present a step backwards.

Starling Marte is an interesting option as he’s still a terrific fielder and base runner. The pause on him is his exit velocities haven’t been great, his launch angle is declining, and much of his offensive success this year was BABIP driven.

Marte has the profile of a player who will regress. That’s very problematic for a player turning 34 next year and looking for a big contract. Worse yet, past Marte, there really isn’t another everyday option on the free agent market, at least not one who can replicate or improve on Conforto.

All told, we know what Conforto can be, and he’s coming off a bad year. The Mets will likely get a discount (albeit not a home town one) from what they’d get if Conforto was coming off a big year, which he’ll likely have in 2022.

The Mets and their fans can be frustrated Conforto didn’t prove to be more than he was all they want. However, truth be told, Conforto is still the best fit for this team, and the Mets should take all reasonable measures to keep him.

5 Replies to “Mets Need To Keep Michael Conforto”

  1. Tony says:

    No No No he has no clue at the plate. Let some other fool sign him. We already overpaid for a SS.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      That’s an embarrassing comment from you

  2. David Klein says:

    Conforto has never hit lefties and is the next Nick Swisher.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      That’s a false statement

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