By: Matt Williams

Mets Center Fielder May Already Be On Roster

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The Mets are searching high and low for a platoon partner for Juan Lagares in centerfield. They are looking into free agents such as Denard Span, Gerardo Parra, and Alejandro De Aza. But Span and Parra may command more years than the Mets are currently willing to commit to players of their caliber. The teams current philosophy for better or worse, does not suggest they will change their thinking and give them the extra year. Other players like De Aza are ok, but that’s about it, nothing that is going to make a real difference. I would suggest looking closer to home, because the Mets have a perfect platoon partner for Lagares currently in AAA. Brandon Nimmo.

The Mets 2011 first round pick has the tools the Mets need and he could be useful right now. It has taken the raw athlete a few years to get his bearings, but Nimmo has slowly developed into a solid player in the minor leagues. He has a solid line drive approach at the plate with great contact. He doesn’t hit for a lot of power, but Nimmo is a big kid and certainly develop more pop down the line. The real asset that Nimmo brings to the table is his plate discipline. At almost every single level he has played at, Nimmo has brought his near .400 OBP with him. The man loves to walk. Scouts say his strong batting eye and patience at the plate remain even in RBI situations. That is a rare trait in a player of his age.

Nimmo is also a very strong defender, playing CF at every level of the minors. He is a great route runner and his above average speed allows him to close in on balls in a hurry.  Since 2011, Brandon has committed only 12 errors. That’s pretty good. Unfortunately, his top end speed has not seemed to translate into stolen bases yet. Perhaps he will learn how to fine tune his acceleration more over time.

He is not without his faults. Nimmo struggles mightily against LHP. The last two years he has hit .152 and .185 at AA and AAA. But, for the Mets purposes we will concentrate on how he does against RHP. Brandon has raked against RHP at every level. In 2015 he hit .297 with a .418 OBP upon his promotion to Triple A. Actually, even against LHP where he struggles; he still kept a great batting eye and managed to get a lot of walks. Part-time play should not hinder Nimmo’s growth either as he will get the bulk of the AB’s as the left handed portion of the platoon

So, maybe when the Mets take a look around they will realize they have a perfect centerfielder for 2016. It is a platoon of Juan Lagares and Brandon Nimmo. What do you think? Comment below.

About Matt Williams

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4 Comments

  1. Richard Fisherman

    December 10, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    Not sure if the Mets want him in a platoon role as opposed to getting regular ABs in Vegas

    • Matt Williams

      December 10, 2015 at 1:00 pm

      Richard, I’m sure AAA is the route the Mets will go. But like I said, if he is in the part of the platoon hitting against RHP, he will see a majority of the ab’s and shouldn’t hurt his growth too badly. His splits against RHP certainly make it an intriguing option over the likes of De Aza and Nieuwenhuis.

  2. Blaiseda

    December 13, 2015 at 7:19 am

    It’s a difficult call. I think the mets prefer to have Nimmo leave AAA behind and have nothing left to prove there including giving him additional work at learning how to hit lefties. Which he won’t get if he’s at he mlb level. In other words by bringing him up now you are likely resigning him to be a platoon player for his career and I bet the mets would like 3 to 6 more months of development to ultimately decide that.
    But That’s also why they are being cautious in signing another cf. realizing that they at the least have a great platoon with Nimmo and lagares they don’t want to commit to a cf this off season that hamstrings them formthe future. That means a short term deal for a player who can be easily traded mid season or at the end of the year. Sounds like will venable to me.

  3. NostraThomas

    December 22, 2015 at 1:25 pm

    Have you actually seen him play CF? I have, he’s not going to be a CF in MLB. And he’s going to be a platoon player, he’s overmatched against good lefties. In the MINORS.

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