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Jeff McNeil 2019 Outlook

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Cano/Diaz for the next couple of years cost about 29m once you subtract Bruce's contract and the 20m the Ms gave. It added to the bullpen and helped relieve the outfield logjam or would you rather an OF of Conforto in CF and Bruce in RF?

 

The Mets have the most dominant pitching in the division and it isn't close. All the signings since then have been about adding MLB players for depth which they sorely lacked.

 

The division is winnable and so far all it cost was a prospect that may or may not be good sometime in the future. Cash they finally had with Wright retiring and they spent it trying to put together a team to take advantage of what their strength is.

 

Edited by Low and Away
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Not only is the division winnable, but the NL West is weak and the NL Central will beat up on each other, so a wild card spot could easily be in play. I don't love it as a McNeil owner in fantasy, but the Mets will need depth and a bullpen if they want to make a run and they bolstered both. I'm really not too worried; if he keeps hitting, they'll find at-bats for him and somebody else is bound to under-perform or get hurt.

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1 hour ago, Low and Away said:

Cano/Diaz for the next couple of years cost about 29m once you subtract Bruce's contract and the 20m the Ms gave. It added to the bullpen and helped relieve the outfield logjam or would you rather an OF of Conforto in CF and Bruce in RF?

 

The Mets have the most dominant pitching in the division and it isn't close. All the signings since then have been about adding MLB players for depth which they sorely lacked.

 

The division is winnable and so far all it cost was a prospect that may or may not be good sometime in the future. Cash they finally had with Wright retiring and they spent it trying to put together a team to take advantage of what their strength is.

 

 

We'll agree to disagree.  I love deGrom, Thor, and Wheeler, but it's not like the rest of the division is starved in pitching, especially Washington with Scherzer, Corbin, Stras at the top, or Atlanta with their depth of arms who are just coming into their own. 

 

Plus your argument is either be stuck with Bruce or trade him in that deal.  Why couldn't they have traded Bruce elsewhere?

 

I don't mind the Lowrie signing ... he's a solid player that didn't cost a ton.  I mind the Lowrie signing IF it causes them to bench a promising player in what should be a year of continued building and development.

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4 hours ago, JFS179 said:

Surprised some people seem to be defending the moves the Mets have made this offseason.  If I were a Mets fan, I'd be pissed.  You're not winning in a division with Atlanta, Washington, and a Philly team hell bent on adding a major bat like Harper or Machado or both ... not with dudes like Cano and Lowrie. 

 

No one's bothered to mention the fact that Cano just got busted last year for PEDs, and the Mets trade their best prospect assets to get him.  Yeah they added Diaz, but there's relievers available on the market that don't cost your best prospects.

 

BVW seems highly misguided.  Who'd have ever thought hiring an agent to do a GM's job would end poorly?

 

As for McNeil, there's a lot of promise in the bat.  I hope the Mets just let him play in a corner OF with Nimmo in CF and Conforto in RF.  I'm not confident they'll come to that conclusion, but that's what I'm hoping for.

I dont see anything wrong with signing lowrie at a good price. 

 

Just because i dont like the concept of some of the moves (adding Canos massive salary and losing prospects) Doesnt mean all the moves are bad. 

 

Edit. Just saw your next reply. Making this redunent.  Im also not sold on philly if they cant end up with one of the prized FA.

Edited by Slatykamora

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I just want to make sure I've got this correct: folks are popping chubbies for a guy that's going to have < 300 MLB at bats at the age of 27? SSS, much?

 

 

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As much as I like McNeil, there is obviously something that the organization sees that we're missing. You don't have a guy who breaks out and looks to be a key piece moving forward (for cheap) and then go out and get a bunch of guys that essentially push him out of a job.

 

Then again, it's the Mets and nobody really has any idea WTF they're doing at any given time...

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McNeil reminds me of the Great Uribe chase of 2002. Many a prognosticators ruined.

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On 1/15/2019 at 2:37 PM, LoGo said:

As much as I like McNeil, there is obviously something that the organization sees that we're missing. You don't have a guy who breaks out and looks to be a key piece moving forward (for cheap) and then go out and get a bunch of guys that essentially push him out of a job.

 

Then again, it's the Mets and nobody really has any idea WTF they're doing at any given time...

 

Why? There is a HUGE gap in baseball between front offices. I love using the Orioles as an example especially NOW, because I believe new GM Mike Elias is going to right the ship in terms of HOW they do business so I don't feel bad for saying this towards their fans, but the Orioles the last few years have ran their organization like a s--- show. They have REFUSED to invest in international FA and have used that pool almost purely as an extra trade asset, and used it to acquire mid-tier, closer to-MLB talent as opposed to investing it on players that can become stars. They failed to understand that NO ONE in baseball cared about just home runs anymore, and gave Chris Davis a figure before reaching the open market that he wouldn't have gotten NEAR on the open market. Their best OBP projection heading into last year was Davis, and that's why he lead off on a team that, top to bottom, displayed some pretty bad approaches. 

 

Organizations typically have their own biases towards certain tools. Anyone who's biased towards power, or thinks hitters absolutely need power, won't love McNeil too much. But they may miss the boat as well. 

 

On 1/15/2019 at 2:20 PM, GrapeJuice said:

I just want to make sure I've got this correct: folks are popping chubbies for a guy that's going to have < 300 MLB at bats at the age of 27? SSS, much?

 

 

 

What is the comment here? What is the complaint? 

 

To make it clear again: there's a difference between believing in a player's future as a certainty, and believing in something as possibility. I can't be certain what Jeff McNeil is. I don't know what he'll do next year. But I also believe, in contrast, that there is a difference between having an incredible two month FACT, and an incredible two month FLUKE. I don't believe McNeil got "lucky." I don't believe he was "lucky" or the result of "bad defense" that he hit .360+ in AAA this past year. I always say MiLB BA's are mostly pointless UNLESS they are at extremes. Very few hitters could ever accomplish .360 at the AAA level. They aren't throwing ONLY McNeil bad baseballs. 

 

And I'm about to go into this situation about why it's frustrating from Mets' perspective IMO, and I think this is the entire point: We wouldn't be beating the drum so loudly if he was just a "starter." The fact that he's not gettingt he respect from the team make teh peanut gallery louder. 

 

On the SURFACE, seasons like Avisail Garcia's 2017 and Danny Santana's 2014, seem like MASSIVE flukes. BABIPs skying over .400. Terrible approaches at the plate. No individual skills/tools with the bat like Contact or Power stick out very much. 

 

On the surface, under-neath the hood, and all over the place McNeil's season seems legitimate. Showcased a 70+ Grade hit tool, spread the ball to all fields, made insane contact, was an amazing hitter v. Off-Speed and Breaking Pitches. 

 

I don't think he necessarily repeats the .359 BABIP, but I find it to be plausible with his spread approach and speed. I think he's a high BABIP hitter, but this is just at the upper range of his plausible. More likely, he's more of a .315 than .330 hitter even if all pans out. 

 

But regardless, he showed the ability to be a roughly 2-2+ WAR player in a 1/3rd of the season. 

 

The question persists: Not "Obviously McNeil is the GOAT, wtf are you doing?" but, "This happened. This may be legit. WHY NOT FIND OUT?"

 

Let's also add this: so far the Mets have added exclusively INF that focused on Middle Infield. Specifically 2B. You wanna know the one position that they almost never needed help at in 2018? Second Base. Asdrubal played almost 100 Games and had an OPS+ higher than anyone on the team not named Brandon Nimmo (.817 OPS, 124 OPS+ for Cabrera). McNeil filled in from there, and likewise put up incredible numbers. I think the Mets had roughly 5 WAR between Cabrera and McNeil last year at 2B. 

 

So who you gonna bring in? A FLEET OF SECOND BASEMAN? To improve the ONE THING that was going right? 

 

That makes sense. 

 

Mets had PUTRID production from 1B. Flores had 328 PAs of a .719 OPS. That's freaking terrible for 1B. This is the ONE position in the NL where you can play a couch potato who can slug for you (no offense First Baseman, just being exaggerative) and the best offensive production you can get from the position is your flexible, .700 OPS Utility man? 

 

Mets had PUTRID production from 3B. Frazier had a .693 OPS. 

 

Nothing they've done fixes 1B. Maybe Alonso works out, but if you're trying to compete this year, that is a risk. Jed Lowrie is the third base fix presumably? That's questionable as a full-season move. Good price, good utility bat, but I don't know if I'm comfortable locking him into 3B this year as a major improvement on a team trying to make big moves. 


The Cano move does nothing to help this team. It gives them a good player who at best will replicate the WAR results Cabrera and McNeil did last year. Alternatively, they could move Cano to 1B, but part of Cano's value certainly still comes from being 2B (in real life) and playing that position well. .280/25 is at least somewhat special at 2B. At 1B, I'd rather have invested in a number of other individuals. You'd waste Cano's value to move him to 1B.

 

Ramos was a good addition for the offense. 

 

The biggest hype move tehy've made is to get a closer. But they gave up a #1 prospect, and Kimbrel, Ottavino, and a stable of arms are still FAs. 

 

If McNeil is an everyday OF, than I don't think anything the Mets have done is insane. If he's not an everday OF, I think this is bonkers, mismanagement, and the reasons I believe that are part of the reasons why I feel the need to defend McNeil so strongly. 

 

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based on the quotes since the lowrie signing, it actually does kind of sound like their plan is to play a mcneil-nimmo-conforto OF most of the time. like, at least against most RHP. that's what i'm hoping, anyway.

 

and yeah, people dismissing mcneil as a 300 PA small sample fluke are ignoring what he did in the minors last year. he raked all season. sure, the mets AAA is vegas, you have to take that into account, but he hit just as well in AA, which is a pitcher's park in the eastern league. i was on him before he even got to vegas. honestly i was a little disappointed by his major league line, as dumb as that sounds - i thought he might end up showing more power. still think he might, maybe.

 

he's old for a rookie sure but he's got all the late bloomer traits - was hurt a lot for a couple years, and didn't even play baseball in high school, he was a golfer. so it makes sense to me that he's taken longer than most to come into his own. 

 

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21 hours ago, taobball said:

Why? There is a HUGE gap in baseball between front offices. I love using the Orioles as an example especially NOW, because I believe new GM Mike Elias is going to right the ship in terms of HOW they do business so I don't feel bad for saying this towards their fans, but the Orioles the last few years have ran their organization like a s--- show. They have REFUSED to invest in international FA and have used that pool almost purely as an extra trade asset, and used it to acquire mid-tier, closer to-MLB talent as opposed to investing it on players that can become stars. They failed to understand that NO ONE in baseball cared about just home runs anymore, and gave Chris Davis a figure before reaching the open market that he wouldn't have gotten NEAR on the open market. Their best OBP projection heading into last year was Davis, and that's why he lead off on a team that, top to bottom, displayed some pretty bad approaches. 

 

Organizations typically have their own biases towards certain tools. Anyone who's biased towards power, or thinks hitters absolutely need power, won't love McNeil too much. But they may miss the boat as well. 

 

Round about way of saying it, but same point I was making: Whether we like McNeil or not is irrelevant if the Mets don't. 

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12 minutes ago, LoGo said:

 

Round about way of saying it, but same point I was making: Whether we like McNeil or not is irrelevant if the Mets don't. 

If the Mets don't. Then he would be traded though

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19 minutes ago, Slatykamora said:

If the Mets don't. Then he would be traded though

 

Maybe. I mean maybe they value him as a super utility backup, but not enough to be an everyday starter at any 1 position? You need guys like the on a 25-man roster as well.

 

That was kinda the other point of my first post: It's the Mets so who knows what the hell they're thinking

Edited by LoGo

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This is a quote from a Mets message board:

The Mets have already stated McNeil is not an everyday player due to durability concerns

 

That was news to me. Any Mets’ homers know if there’s any truth to it?

Edited by meh2

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28 minutes ago, meh2 said:

This is a quote from a Mets message board:

The Mets have already stated McNeil is not an everyday player due to durability concerns

 

That was news to me. Any Mets’ homers know if there’s any truth to it?

So after posting this I did a little more research. It turns out he had a double sports hernia in May of 2015, he missed all but 3 games in 2016 after undergoing hip labrum surgery, and was limited to 48 games in 2017. I could see how that could create some concerns, but in 2018 he played in 151 games and logged 632 plate appearances. That looks like an everyday player to me by today’s standards.

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On 1/18/2019 at 9:58 AM, LoGo said:

 

Maybe. I mean maybe they value him as a super utility backup, but not enough to be an everyday starter at any 1 position? You need guys like the on a 25-man roster as well.

 

That was kinda the other point of my first post: It's the Mets so who knows what the hell they're thinking

Trading/inquiring for players that appear to be under ultlized by their team is GM 101. 

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McNeil is very talented, but its hard to get a read on what the Mets really think of him. On one hand they were reluctant to include him in the Cano trade, and on the other, they got Cano, Lowrie, and Broxton, all potentially blocking him (lets not forget TJ Rivera lingering as well). There would have to be a few long term injuries for him to get an extended shot. For now, he's a guy to monitor if injuries strike but I can't defend drafting him at this point.

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1 hour ago, Sidearmer said:

McNeil is very talented, but its hard to get a read on what the Mets really think of him. On one hand they were reluctant to include him in the Cano trade, and on the other, they got Cano, Lowrie, and Broxton, all potentially blocking him (lets not forget TJ Rivera lingering as well). There would have to be a few long term injuries for him to get an extended shot. For now, he's a guy to monitor if injuries strike but I can't defend drafting him at this point.

 

Normally I would say let's take this at face value.  They don't think as highly of him as others.  

 

At the same time it seems teams HATE playing young players unless they are top prospects.  Lets' look at Houston and Kyle Tucker.  He is a top prospect and they still go out and sign Brantley.  Young players only get opportunities when there is an injury.

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7 hours ago, B&F said:

At the same time it seems teams HATE playing young players unless they are top prospects.  Lets' look at Houston and Kyle Tucker.  He is a top prospect and they still go out and sign Brantley.  Young players only get opportunities when there is an injury.

 

This just isn't true. Notice how hard it is for free agents to sign now? Many teams are passing on solid big league guys to give their young guys a shot.

 

It's not like Tucker did anything when he had a shot (was better than the results indicated). They signed Brantley because it was an incredible price for a player of his caliber. If he goes down, there's Tucker. If springer goes back to CF you can put Tucker in right (not sure how feasible this is). Supposedly Brantley is going to play some 1B too.

 

I think it's too early to know what the Mets will do with mcneil, but it sure doesn't look promising so far. 

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Some news on him.  He is off to the outfield:

 

Quote

Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen said in an interview on WFAN on Monday that Jeff McNeil's "focus in spring training is going to be a transition to the outfield."

 

"His focus in spring training is going to be a transition to the outfield because we think we can be a lethal lineup with a McNeil, (Michael) Conforto, (Brandon) Nimmo outfield against right-handed pitching," Van Wagenen said. We knew that the Mets planned to use McNeil in the outfield more this season, and it sounds like he could start versus righties as long as he shows in spring training that he can hack it defensively. That would presumably mean moving Nimmo to center field against right-handers, with Juan Lagares and Keon Broxton coming off the bench. McNeil has started just five games in the outfield as a pro (all in the minors), but he played the outfield regularly in college.
 
Source: Matt Ehalt on Twitter                          Feb 11 - 6:42 PM

 

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58 minutes ago, CuredMeats said:

Don't think this news necessarilly clarifies or helps the playing time situation. 

Idk sure seems like their thinking is clear? He'll play everyday against most RH...and if he's hitting similarly to last year they will likely find a way to keep him in the lineup full time.

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2 minutes ago, ST. STEVEN said:

Idk sure seems like their thinking is clear? He'll play everyday against most RH...and if he's hitting similarly to last year they will likely find a way to keep him in the lineup full time.

 

Remains to be seen. I'd think Broxton and Lagares will get some ABs against righties. McNeil also deserves some ABs against lefties. There's just a lot of players here and it will take a while to sort out. Even if McNeil proves he is the best option he will likely be subbed out for defense quite frequently late in games.

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20 minutes ago, Sidearmer said:

 

Remains to be seen. I'd think Broxton and Lagares will get some ABs against righties. McNeil also deserves some ABs against lefties. There's just a lot of players here and it will take a while to sort out. Even if McNeil proves he is the best option he will likely be subbed out for defense quite frequently late in games.

I can def see your point on the defense replacement angle--esp late game. But Brox is simply a terrible hitter and I can't imagine Lagares is even capable of near McNeil's bat only production. Other than the occasional day off, there should be no way those guys would play over JM versus a RH. I just hope JM can still get days at 2B or 3B v LH to get eligibility...but it sounds a lot like he's gonna be a full time OF, at least to begin the year.

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7 minutes ago, ST. STEVEN said:

I can def see your point on the defense replacement angle--esp late game. But Brox is simply a terrible hitter and I can't imagine Lagares is even capable of near McNeil's bat only production. Other than the occasional day off, there should be no way those guys would play over JM versus a RH. I just hope JM can still get days at 2B or 3B v LH to get eligibility...but it sounds a lot like he's gonna be a full time OF, at least to begin the year.

 

Lagares was hitting .340 last year before he got hurt. McNeil is the better hitter, but Lagares isn't a total waste. And the occasional RH starts for Lagares are more so based on getting his glove into the game. I can see Lagares starting for all of Jason Vargas's starts for example (fly ball, contact pitcher). But to your point maybe they will slot McNeil in the IF during these times.

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