New York Mets Pumping the Brakes On Pursuit of Left-Handed Bat

By Craig Williams

A couple of weeks ago I discussed the New York Mets’ interest in a left-handed outfield bat.  According to Joel Sherman, the New York Mets have put this search on the back burner with the hopes that the options will improve as the season nears.  There were rumbles that the New York Mets were looking into guys such as Johnny Damon, Raul Ibanez, Kosuke Fukudome, Juan Pierre and Rick Ankiel.  Not one of those names warrants much excitement, but that really isn’t what teams are going for at this point.  The New York Mets are looking for a halfway decent bench presence and at least one of those guys could provide that.

With all of that said, I think waiting is a good idea for the Mets.  Obtaining this lefty-hitting bench piece is really not going to make or break anything in 2012.  Instead of committing to a player at a higher price than they are willing to pay, why not go into Spring Training and see what shakes out?  This is basically the approach that Sherman says the Mets are looking to take. If nothing else, the prices of remaining free agents – the Damons and Ankiels – will begin to fall a bit.  Not only that, but maybe some more options will emerge.  This always gives the buyer more leverage.

In the post that I linked to in the first paragraph, I wondered out loud if the Mets’ pursuit of a left-handed bat hinted at Lucas Duda being placed on the trading block.  I admitted that it was nothing more than speculation as I simply happened to type a thought that fleeted across my mind.  This would probably not be a popular idea with the fans since he figures to be one of the bright spots in the lineup this season.  It all depends on the return though.  The point is moot anyway, because considering the lack of aggressiveness in their pursuit of the left-handed bat, it is probably safe to say that the New York Mets have no plans on moving Duda.

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