Mets GM Sandy Alderson was on WFAN with Mike Francesa yesterday. Nothing groundbreaking was discussed; it is not the groundbreaking part of the season. Two items did stick out a little for me, so I wanted to discuss them briefly today. The first item is shipwrecked shortstop Ruben Tejada.
Jimmy wrote a good post about what I will call the Ruben Tejada “situation” last week. As the season has progressed, the commentary about Ruben has gotten more and more negative from the Mets. Yesterday on WFAN, Sandy said the following when asked about Tejada:
You know, one of the problems with Ruben is, it’s like pulling teeth. Extra batting practice, extra this, extra that, doesn’t happen unless someone else is insisting on it. And that’s what we need to see. We need to see a commitment to improvement.
It all just seems like a stalemate to me. I sure know that nobody is winning, certainly not Mets fans. I used to joke about how it is not exciting to watch Ruben Tejada, well, Omar and Justin mania is not the answer either. Raise your hand if you thought in April that our outfield would seem more settled than our shortstop position.
The second item that piqued my interest was about Juan Lagares. Here is Francesa’s question and Alderson’s answer regarding Juan.
MF: “And how about Lagares? Do you consider Lagares to be a guy who is part of your future?”
SA: “I have to think so. He’s just so accomplished defensively and he has been improving offensively. He can be frustrating at times because he can chase a lot of pitches, but he’s chasing far fewer now than he was before. His defensive ability has been so critical to the way we’ve played over the past couple of months, that it’s hard to overlook that.”
As obvious as this answer seems, I was still happy to see it. After three years of playing anyone who can stand upright in the outfield, a recognition of the importance of defense is a big step around here. I sure hope that it is not a passing fad.
There was more, including a lot on Harvey, as he is rightfully the big story in town, but it’s too early for Sandy to say anything too meaningful about Matt.
For anyone who has not seen the entire interview, Aaron Yorke at Amazin’ Avenue did a great job of quickly getting a full transcript up on their site. Thanks, guys, I was not able to hear this one live.
In general nothing scary today, in fact, it was a minor comment, but Alderson alluded to “money to spend.” Right now I’ll take that, it sure beats hearing about “internal options”, especially when those options are Jason Bay.