The Mets have been negotiating with veteran catcher Bengie Molina for quite some time, and they clearly aren’t THAT interested in him. What they are currently more focused on is the development of their top catching prospect, Josh Thole. The team has been trying to figure out how long it will take him to become the catcher of the franchise while trying to juggle the responsibility of finding a short-term rental until that date arrives.
Bengie Molina works, but the recently-conservative general manager Omar Minaya really seems content with resorting to Omir Santos to carry the load at the catcher position. My guess is that Minaya could assimilate Thole into the mix by having him catch day games after night games and just scratch the idea of Molina entirely.
On that same token, the Mets have built successful teams over the years and have failed to execute their plans, leaving many writers, fans, and others scratching their heads. Minaya knows that he needs to do what is best for his short-term job status in New York because 2010 will be a very important season for him.
Moving to the outfield, Jeff Francoeur and the Mets settled on a cheap, one-year contract in an attempt to avoid salary arbitration. It is fine and dandy that the Mets avoided arbitration, but Francoeur really needed more years. Minaya has had a difficult time signing free-agents and Francoeur is a solid player that was one of the bright spots of last year’s disaster. The Mets have always seemed to have some kind of a void in the corners of the outfield, but keeping Francoeur could prevent this once and for all. To top it all off, he could potentially lend the Mets some inside information on the Atlanta Braves as he spent many years in the organization.
At first base, the Mets should seize the opportunity to re-acquire first baseman Carlos Delgado by signing him to a contract loaded with incentives. It is the perfect time for a contract like this, especially coming from a guy who may be getting old but has certainly shown his potential in recent years for the Mets. The Mets absolutely need to avoid giving Daniel Murphy a starting role at all costs. Murphy is overrated and makes mistakes that will cost games throughout the season. He was thrown in the spotlight too early and needs to take a backseat. Everyone praises his workout regimen but it is important that he allocates enough resting time in such an arduous 162 game season. A reduced utility role would work well for him.