Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets Must Move Daniel Murphy


 

Yesterday the Mets signed free agent outfielder Curtis Granderson to a 4 year, $60 million contract, the second free agent outfielder the Mets have picked up this off-season. He and Chris Young will likely be the starting corner outfielders for the team in the forthcoming season, with Juan Lagares patrolling center. The addition of Granderson adds a viable power bat to the middle of the Mets lineup, but also exposes a glaring weakness, they do not have a lead-off hitter. As of right now I would project the Mets’ line-up to look like this:

1 – Lagares CF

2 – Murphy 2B

3 – Wright 3B

4 – Granderson RF

5- Duda/Davis 1B

6 – C. Young LF

7  – D’Arnaud C

8 – Tejada SS

I doubt the Mets are done tinkering with their roster this off-season, mainly because they can’t be. They have a log jam at first base which must be cleared up, but you’d be hard pressed to find a lead-off hitter at first base. They are looking for an upgrade at shortstop, but I doubt they will find one, which means that Ruben Tejada will likely be the team’s starting shortstop next year. Travis d’Arnaud is going to be the team’s starting catcher and captain David Wright is going to be on the hot corner for a long time to come. That leaves only the option of bringing in another outfielder or second baseman as potential places to put their missing lead-off man.

That is why this team must move Daniel Murphy, one way or another. If they opt to not add on another everyday player to the roster this off-season they have a solution to their problem within the organization already. Eric Young Jr, who did a good job sparking the Mets last year from the lead-off spot after his arrival via trade. Young was playing left field last year, but he has experience at second base, where his offensive output projects more favorably.If the organization opts to move EY to second it would necessitate moving Murphy to first base and jettisoning both Lucas Duda and Ike Davis for whatever you could get for them. I am not in favor of this move, but I could certainly deal with it. A lineup that starts E. Young – Murphy – Wright – Granderson is at least a legitimate major league top of the order. The only issue is that Daniel Murphy does not have the power numbers to provide the production that you need to get from first base.

I would prefer to have the team move either Davis or Duda in a trade with Murphy which brings back some decent major league level talent, whether it be a pitcher or position player does not matter, just something of value. I am a big fan of Murphy but his the only expendable player on this roster that has any real value. Sandy Alderson must use Murphy’s value to help this team get to the next level. Either way, Daniel Murphy can not be this team’s second baseman next season unless another significant move is made by the front office to provide a top-of-the-order player to this team, and I don’t see that move happening.

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Tags: Daniel Murphy New York Mets

  • PJ

    Would the following trade be considered fair for both teams ?

    Mets & Orioles:

    To Orioles: Daniel Murphy
    Ike Davis
    Rafael Montero

    To Mets: JJ Hardy
    Nick Markakis
    Johnny Schoop

    I would throw in Ruben Tejada if it would seal the deal.

    Rationale: Machado can move from 3B to SS. Murphy takes over at 3B. Davis had 9 HR and Markakis (better average) hit 10. Markakis better than Davis. Montero (SP) better than Schoop (2B) but Schoop is Baltimore’s 5th best prospect. Hardy has 1 year left on contract so he can go if he doesn’t perform. If he does, Mets’ middle infield much better and more power.

    Any thought ?

    PJ

    • chums41

      I think its a great idea, and I prefer Markakis over Granderson, but it’s too late now. Also, I would not be too quick to trade Murph, he’s only 29 and could be on the verge of entering his prime. If we could get Hardy for Davis and some minor league pitcher/player other than Montero, I would print that trade.

      • PJ

        Thanks for the comment. You know the old saying…. “You have to give up something to get something”. You won’t get Hardy for Davis and a lesser pitcher. Markakis can play RF, Grandy in LF and Lagares in CF with Chris Young as the 4th OF. With Murphy gone, if Schoop does not pan out, Eric Young can play 2B and lead off (which may not be a bad idea). In that case, perhaps we can get a decent RP like Darren O’Day (probably too expensive for Sandy) or Tommy Hunter instead of Schoop (though I think he can play 3 positions in the infield and hit).

        • chums41

          No question, your trade suggestion would make them a better team, I just don’t see the Mets paying a guy $7.25mm to be the 4th outfielder. Perhaps they look to the Angels and determine what it would take to get Erick Aybar.

  • MJK

    Murph is much better than young. There is no comparison. Steals don’t matter to Aldersons game. If they can get something necessary for murph then and only then would it make sense…swapping murph for young is a serious NO GO…young is a bench player w speed … Nothing more! Murph is the second best player on the team w granderson possibly third best … But that’s hardly proven … I’m not sure granderson isn’t the second coming of Jason bay …

  • Herman_Metswille

    Trading your second-best hitter just to get a lead-off batter makes no sense to me. Given the Mets’ record for injuries and guys whose BA drops 50 points as soon as they join the team, Eric Young will get plenty of time as a utility player. The team’s highest priority should be an upgrade at shortstop, using Duda or Davis as trade bait. I prefer trading Duda rather than Davis. You don’t give up too quickly on a guy who hit 32 home runs two years ago.

  • chums41

    Unless moving Murph yields a shortstop like Aybar, Hardy or Lowrie, I wouldn’t be too quick to trade him. He’s been a steady .285/.290 hitter his entire career and his RBI total jumped by 20% last year. Given the improvement, it is very likely that he maintains his batting average and his Homers and RBI’s improve by another 10% next year. Selling at the high, implies a players production will decline and it’s not very clear to me why his production won’t continue to improve.