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A History of the Mets at Second Base Part 10 - The Future

Barry DuchanSaturday, January 17, 2009
By Barry Duchan

Editor's Note: This is the last in a series of ten new articles Barry has written on Mets second basemen for this site. - M.S.

Most Mets' fans were pretty sure what the Mets' plans would be for filling the second base hole in 2009 and beyond. They'd dump Luis Castillo to anyone who would take him and throw in enough cash or take back another overpaid player to make the deal. Then they would sign Orlando Hudson, who had expressed interest in playing for the Mets, to a 3 or 4-year contract. Except as of today, this hasn't happened. Castillo is still a Met and Hudson is still a free-agent with few, if any, rumors regarding his next team.

Even though Omar Minaya has publicly expressed confidence in Castillo's ability to bounce back and Luis has indicated that he expects a return to his pre-2008 form, most fans probably hoped that this was just a ruse and that it would somehow be Hudson at second base for the Mets on Opening Day, 2009. The Mets recently signed Alex Cora to back up Castillo and Reyes, but if the Mets go into spring training with Castillo as the starter, there's a pretty good chance Cora will wind up with a lot of playing time at second base if Luis doesn't bounce back. While the light-hitting Cora is hardly an exciting alternative, he may be OK for one year. Until this situation is resolved, we can only speculate on the Mets' future at the position.

The upper levels of the farm system gave us Argenis Reyes, who may move on to another team or be back with the Mets ' organization in the spring, but is clearly nobody's choice as the future starter. Reese Havens made his pro debut with Brooklyn as a shortstop, the position he played in college, but he may be moved to second base. He could be a couple of years away, or may not be a factor at all. It's too early to tell. One-time top prospect Hector Pellot has shown little progress and at this point doesn't figure in any plans. We may very well know the Mets' future at the position soon, if Castillo is dealt away and a younger second baseman is signed, but right now it's all speculation.

So, in 47 years the Mets have gone from one former all-star they hoped might regain his skills (Charlie Neal) to another (Castillo). There have been some good ones along the way, most notably Millan, Backman, and Alfonzo, but mostly it's been a series of bad decisions. Just maybe the Mets can solidify second base as they have at third base and shortstop with Wright and Reyes. Maybe Omar Minaya has a signing or trade up his sleeve. We'll see.

Part 1 - A History of Mistakes
Part 2 - The Sixties
Part 3 - The Seventies and Eighties
Part 4 - Gregg Jefferies
Part 5 - Jeff Kent
Part 6 - The Carlos Baerga era/error
Part 7 - Roberto Alomar
Part 8 - 2004 - 2005
Part 9 - 2006 - 2008
Part 10 - The Future - Current Article

Note: More of Barry Duchan's writings can be found on his own Metscentric blog.

About Barry Duchan: I've been following the Mets since 1962. Have to admit I was a Yankee fan as a kid, but I found it to be so much more interesting to see how a young team could build itself up rather than following a team where the season didn't really begin until October. I remember them all - Casey, Marv, ChooChoo, Don Bosch, The Stork, etc. As the years went on, I became more and more of a Mets fan, and a Yankee hater once Steinbrenner and Billy Martin entered the picture.   Read More -->

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Comments (3)

This was a really great series of posts. As a younger Mets fan it was very useful to read up on some past Mets that I never really knew about. Thanks

I just finished reading all of your articles on the mistakes at second. I'm currently in NC at least until Sept. or so, but found it interesting that you left Long Island to come to Chapel Hill, which I assume had something to do with teaching or your children attending UNC, I went there for my birthday last year, and got a ticket for parking on the street, that later ended being dismissed because of where they located the sign. I too lived in New York most of my life, being raised in Astoria, and later lived in Bayside, where my mother in law currently resides. I also have in laws that live in Smithtown and cousins that live in whitestone. I'm really looking forward to the Mets season, hopefully they could sign a difference making bat, and I'm real big on Garland and wouldn't mind Wolfe and Sheets over Perez, as long as Sheets stays healthy.

As far as second base, I heard Egardo is making his way through the independent leagues again or the minors. I also noticed that a lot of ex Mets play for the Long Island Ducks. I like castillo if he's healthy, I mean when the mets traded for him healthy, not I'm ok but still limp around the bases healthy. I prefer, and this is a dream sheet for most Mets fans other than Holliday, Brian Roberts, and players that play that position so well and have a bigger upside and are slightly younger in age. I believe Hudson would do a decent job, but again your signing a older second base man for certain amount of years, which could be avoided if Castillo is one healthy and two is productive. The longer shot I have at second and I know he's being groomed for First Base, is Daniel Murphy. If this guy continues to play like he did last season for years to come, then between him, Wright, Reyes, and Beltran, that is a nice situation for Mets fans to be in. I hope all this hype and talk of Fernando Martinez is true, because I like Santana a lot and he will win another cy young or two before his time in New York is up, but the Mets did give up who I believed was Big League Ready Carlos Gomez and he like Murphy and to some level Evans did bring excitement to the Mets when they really needed.

All I have to say about 2B is Murphy Murphy Murphy. I'm done :)

Jason B

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