The New York Mets continue to be one of Major League Baseball’s most aggressive teams this offseason as they look to quickly become contenders in the National League East.
Already having traded for Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz while signing Jeurys Familia and Wilson Ramos, new general manager Brodie Van Wagenen has scoured the market to upgrade the largest voids within the roster.
But it also appears that they are kicking the tires on more infielders.
Mike Puma of the New York Post reported on Tuesday that the Mets have discussed the idea of signing free-agent third baseman Mike Moustakas. Though he was quick to note that the organization’s views could have changed after signing Ramos on Sunday.
Nearing almost a decade of service in the majors, the 30-year-old appears to be hitting his stride now as one of his position’s top power bats.
After averaging 14 home runs per season during his first six years with the Kansas City Royals, Moustakas exploded for 38 in 2017, a franchise record. He knocked an additional 28 round trippers in 2018 with a career-high 95 RBI with the Royals and Milwaukee Brewers.
Those kinds of numbers would obviously add a boost to the Mets lineup, especially on the left side of the infield. However, there is already a logjam at the position created by Van Wagenen’s moves.
The trade for Cano, who will be the Mets’ everyday second baseman in 2019, has likely forced Jeff McNeil to split time with Todd Frazier at third base. Adding another third baseman to the mix would further limit McNeil’s chances at cracking the lineup which could be seen as an irresponsible move after he slashed .329/.381/.471 in 63 games last year.
In order to alleviate some of that pressure if the Mets are indeed gung-ho on Moustakas, they could experiment with splitting the free agent’s time between third and first base. The Royals played Moustakas at first for four games last season before trading him to the Brewers. He didn’t commit an error in 34 chances.
First base is a bit of an unknown for the Mets right now. Dominic Smith has struggled in his abbreviated stints in the majors while it remains to be seen just how good slugging prospect Peter Alonso will be.