A few hours ago the clock struck twelve at Citi Field, and Josh Satin was sent back to Las Vegas. If life was a fairy tale, he would have turned back into a pumpkin, but as it is not, Satin has been a pumpkin all along. We had the following post written for Josh today, now it can be considered a tribute. Have fun in Vegas, Josh, I hope you hit on the hard eight.
I don’t think there’s a player on the Mets roster who is a bigger proponent or practitioner of “the approach” than Josh Satin.
He is all in.
And why not?
Look at him, sleeping in fabulous hotels, living the life. Of course he believes in the approach. How else could such a mediocre player have risen to the bigs? Josh is a posterboy for “the approach.” Look what it can get you — Egyptian cotton bed sheets with a 1200 thread count! As Aziz Ansari says, “It’s like sleeping in lotion.”
If Royce Ring is now a pitching coach, why can’t Josh Satin replace Dave Hudgens as batting coach? Or, okay, get the job in Brooklyn after he’s retired from baseball in a few years.
Josh says all the right things:
“My whole philosophy of hitting — which is kind of similar to what [the Mets] want — is swing at the best pitch you’re going to get and don’t swing at marginal pitches, which I think creates maybe a few more strikeouts but allows you to square the ball up more,” Satin said. “You square the ball up more, you’re going to have a higher batting average on balls in play, especially if you strike out a little more.”
And by Josh saying the “right” things, I mean: What the boss wants to hear. Hook, line, and sinker. He is down with the program.
Too bad he can’t hit so swell.
Yes. Woody Hayes had that famous saying, “When you throw the ball, only three things can happen, and two of them are bad.” Woody didn’t like the risk trade-off involved with passing the football. Three yards and a cloud of dust was the goal. Satin, with a bat in his hands generates a similar thought from me. Only three things can happen when Josh hits, and two of them are bad. And since the best one can hope for is a flare that falls in, it isn’t worth the risk. Josh Satin needs to work counts. Whoever invented the phrase, “A walk is as good as a hit,” was watching someone with limited hitting skills like Satin at the bat.
It’s not that Josh is that terrible. He just doesn’t help the Mets win games, doesn’t impact the score. The 29-year-old first baseman has hit 3 career HRs in 278 PAs. He can’t run, can’t adequately field. The numbers against LHP were not bad last year, not bad at all:
* 2013 vs. LHP: .317/.404/.476.
In the absence of a legitimate, everyday first-bagger, you can almost think that Josh is okay enough as a platoon partner with a lefty-swinger. Josh also can fill in at 3B should David Wright get hit by a bus or something.
So if the question is this:
“Our first baseman can’t hit lefties at all, what are our cheapest options on the farm?”
Then Josh Satin is your answer!
That is his greatest value, he plays for the minimum. Basically, he replaces Justin Turner, who the Mets non-tendered as soon as he no longer would be available at that price. When it comes to the bench, only extremely cheap labor need apply. The good news for applicants — actual major league caliber talent is not required for the position.
I don’t wish to beat on Josh Satin specifically. Seems like a fine young man, doing his absolute best to make it in the big leagues. I respect that enormously. This is more about what he represents: A mediocre talent, an older player with limited ability, who has found a place with the New York Mets because he’s some sort of test tube baby. He does everything they want a hitter to do. His approach embodies all that they teach and value.
And he’s dirt cheap.
Unfortunately, his perfect approach is not getting it done.
I guess I’d rather have a more talented player who swings the bat with intent to harm.
Unless you have an incredibly deep roster, some of your bench players will have flaws. That is why they end up as bench guys. But players like Scott Hairston and Eric Young Jr. have a defined skill that can help win a game. Hairston, deployed carefully, has some power. Young, of course, brings speed. Another example is a no-hit plus defensive player, Wilfredo Tovar profiles as that type of guy. With these players there is an expected drop off from a starter’s production if you need to use them for a few days, but in the meantime they do have skills that can help you win a game. Josh Satin can’t field, or hit. His main skill is the hope that he can stand at the plate long enough to leave the dirty work up to the next guy. He is basically useless. He better be a nice guy.
I am glad that Terry has started to use Lucas Duda against some LHP. He got two hits against a lefty in Colorado, I dimly recall. I don’t have a real problem with Josh specifically, it’s more the cumulative effect of too many guys who don’t do enough. The Mets won a World Series with Rafael Santana at short. Not everybody has to an All-Star.
I guess I just find it interesting because I believe that Josh Satin is here, and has been rewarded, because he embodies the approach that the Mets want to see across the system. He’s the guy who is going about things the Mets way.
And you are not alone if that scares you a little bit.