Here’s what the Mets knew last winter.
Mike Nickeas, 2011 Triple-A stats: .214/.286/.304
Mike Nickeas, career MLB stats, through 2011: .190/.239/.254
Josh Thole, career against LHP: .197/.266/.268
How the Mets did not get a reasonable backup for Josh Thole, one who could hit lefties (and plenty were available for relatively little), is utterly beyond me. It was then, it is now.
Oh, by the way, here’s Mike Nickeas in 2012: .168/.241/.228.
This won’t be the difference between winning the pennant and staying home in October. But it’s a low-cost way the Mets could have improved themselves, and didn’t. They didn’t bother to employ a major leaguer, in anything other than name, as a backup catcher. It’s keeping the Mets from fixing problems, large and small, over and over again.
And Sandy Alderson told you why: his budget had room for either a couple of bullpen arms OR a backup catcher.
How that would turn out was the most predictable thing ever.