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Welcome Back, Jason Bay

Posted By Howard Megdal On July 17, 2012 @ 9:45 am In Today's Mets headlines | Comments Disabled

Look, I know you are tired of watching him. You’re tired of the groundouts, the poor range in left field. Every failure is magnified by that four-year, $66 million contract.

But let me give you a list of players who play the outfield for the New York Mets, and their OPS against lefties this year:

Scott Hairston .952

Andres Torres .804

Jason Bay .776

Jordany Valdespin .631

Lucas Duda .588

Kirk Nieuwenhuis .492

Since a team, ideally, deploys three outfielders, it is pretty clear that having Hairston, Torres and Bay against lefties will make a lot more sense than Valdespin, Duda or Nieuwenhuis against lefties.

It’s not a perfect scenario to be paying $16 million a guy who would be your third-best option in the outfield, strictly in a platoon situation. But the Mets have been engaging in makeshift plans all year, the result of not having the financial luxury of actually fully planning in the offseason. That replacing Dillon Gee comes down to either Miguel Batista, who doesn’t belong on a major league roster, or Matt Harvey, who should be spending more time in Triple-A learning to pitch, is happening for the same reason.

So don’t look at Jason Bay as someone who is woefully short of what the Mets hoped he’d be when they signed him. The contract is a sunk cost. Think of it this way: a guy who works as hard as Jason Bay should be easy to root for, and fills a need. What else do you want out of a fifth outfielder?

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