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Despite Recent Moves Mets Still Have Void At Third Base

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Christmas came and went over three weeks ago.  However, the disgruntled allegiance of New York Mets fans this past week must have felt like the second coming of the December holiday.

The majority of this offseason has been uneventful in the eyes of many Mets fans.  Categorizing the acquisitions of Asdrubal Cabrera’s 2018 option and the signing of ex-Brewer Anthony Swarzak aren’t slight towards either individual.

Nevertheless, when Mets fans peer across town at the Bronx to see division foe Giancarlo Stanton being acquired for relatively little in terms of talent it tends to add to their agitation.

This agitation subsided to a degree over the past week with the return of Jay Bruce and the pennies on the dollar signing of former Los Angeles Dodgers first basemen Adrian Gonzalez.  Bruce and the Mets reached an agreement on a 3 year, $39 million deal on January 10th.

Jay Bruce took his physical today and is expected to be introduced tomorrow at a press conference at Citi Field.  Adrian Gonzalez’s path to Queens was slightly different.

Gonzalez was released by the Atlanta Braves last month after he was acquired in virtual salary dump with the Dodgers that included outfield Matt Kemp among other players.

The expectation with these recent moves is that the Mets fill an outfield that was ironically vacated by Bruce through an August trade with the Indians, and that Gonzalez gives the Mets a contingency plan if Dominic Smith isn’t ready to take the job at first base.  Smith showed little offensive prowess last season to the tune of a .198 batting average in 167 at bats.

Mets GM Sandy Alderson has taken a methodical approach to addressing the Mets needs, and this approach has been the theme of this offseason for many clubs.  The total number of free agents available at press time is over 100 unsigned players.

No free agent player that has signed has received more than three years on a contract.  Players like Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, JD Martinez, Jake Arrieta, and Yu Darvish all remain without a team with a month remaining until pitchers and catchers report to spring training.

Alderson’s patience hasn’t hurt the Mets up to this point, and the slow developing market could work in the Mets favor when it comes to other needs the team has to address.

The status of David Wright is always a question which leaves a void at a key production spot in the lineup.

Former Yankee Todd Frazier’s name has surfaced in reports linking him to the Mets.  Frazier’s knack for the longball would certainly appeal to Alderson’s home run heavy philosophy.  Todd Frazier inability to do much more than hit home runs makes his upside limited.  And do the Mets want to get locked into such a limited player with an already tight budget?

A player the caliber of Mike Moustakas would normally be out of the Mets price range (That’s a whole different rant for another time).  But with Moustakas’s market dwindling and his options limited might be inclined to take less money to capitalize on his value.

A pillow deal could be reached between the Mets and Moustakas, but next season’s third basemen market will include the likes of Josh Donaldson and Manny Machado.  Moustakas’s opportunity to get years with dollars is probably this offseason.

The Mets would be getting a 29-year old third baseman who is a superb defender and is coming off of year in which he blasted 38 home runs.

The time is right for the Mets to make a move to get a very good major league player for a very affordable price…even by the frugal Mets standards.

National League

Clint Hurdle Retires From Managing

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Longtime manager Clint Hurdle, who was recently dismissed as the manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates, has announced his retirement from managing.

According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Jason Mackey, Hurdle, 62, may be done managing but he has spoken with organizations about front-office possibilities.

Along with the Pirates, Hurdle has managed the Colorado Rockies as well.

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National League

Cardinals Re-Sign Adam Wainwright

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The St. Louis Cardinals have re-signed veteran right hander Adam Wainwright, according to an official team announcement.

Wainwright’s new deal is for one-year, but the value of the deal is not currently known.

Wainwright, 38, pitched to the tune of a 4.19 ERA last season.

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Atlanta Braves

Nationals Interested In Josh Donaldson

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Josh Donaldson

The World Series Champion Washington Nationals are looking to improve their championship roster this offseason and have a certain slugger in mind as they gear up for the winter.

According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, the Nationals are one of six teams showing early interest in free agent Josh Donaldson.

Along with the Nationals, the Texas Rangers, Philadelphia Phillies, and Atlanta Braves are all interested in the veteran third baseman.

Donaldson posted a slash line of .259/.379/.521 with 37 home runs last season for the Braves.

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