When your team has an outfield situation as desperate as the Mets’ is (Andrew Brown is going to compete for a starting job after having trouble staying on Colorado’s major league roster in 2012), any new is good news.
Yesterday, that good news came in the form of 11-year veteran Marlon Byrd signing a Minor League contract.
#Mets have signed Marlon Byrd to a minor league contract with a spring invite. He’ll compete with Andrew Brown for that fifth OF spot.
— Anthony DiComo (@AnthonyDiComo) February 2, 2013
You might remember that after being traded from the Cubs to Boston last season, Byrd was released when he tested positive for an illegal substance.
Fortunately for New York, even though he was released, Byrd has still technically served the suspension.
On the other hand, when he was active in 2012, Byrd batted just .210/.243/.245 in 153 plate appearances. Still, just like with their bullpen situation, the Mets should be trying to bring in as many options as possible to help with the outfield.
The last time Byrd was a productive major leaguer was in 2010, when he hit for an OPS of .775 while playing full-time for the Cubs.
If there’s even a little bit of that version of Byrd left, he should be able to grab a roster spot on Opening Day and get some at-bats against left-handed pitching.