By: Michael Ganci

To Stay or Go: The Curious Case of Alejandro De Aza

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When the Mets acquired Alejandro De Aza this offseason, it seemed like a forgone conclusion that he and Juan Lagares would be platooning in center field, with Michael Conforto roaming in left and Curtis Granderson patrolling right, but the surprisingly quiet market for Yoenis Cespedes allowed the Mets to retain the power-hitting slugger, which clouded the role De Aza would fill for the team moving forward.

As of this writing, De Aza is the only left-handed hitting option off of the bench, although that may change with the Mets being in the market for a backup catcher. He seems like the fifth outfielder, with Juan Lagares being more likely to get a defensive replacement assignment late in games. He could also spell Granderson in day games after night games, and he could be used as a pinch runner as well.

For the money the Mets spent, many are saying the Mets should deal De Aza because of his pricetag. Are you footing the bill fans? I don’t think so. Why do you care what he’s making? There are plenty of athletes throughout professional sports that get paid well beyond their value. But is De Aza’s value to the Mets highest as a member of their bench? Here’s their options.

Keep Him: Depth is never an enemy. As we’ve already seen with the Asdrubal Cabrera injury, it’s nice to have Wilmer Flores and Ruben Tejada at the ready. Having depth allows the team to proceed without missing a beat, and keeping continuity is pivotal during the dog days of summer.

Trade Him Now: The Mets could probably get a b-level prospect at best for De Aza, who would certainly have value to other teams. The Mets could look to acquire one or two b-level guys, with the hope that their coaches in the minor leagues can help their games move to the next level.

Trade Him for Bullpen Help: We all know that valuable bullpen arms are hard to come by. Even though the Mets have Jeurys Familia, Addison Reed and Antonio Bastardo, as well as others, you can never have enough depth (see above). If the Mets can acquire another late-inning option, that’d only strengthen their relief corps.

Wait for the Desperate: Injuries deplete baseball, and they happen every year. If a team is thin in the outfield and isn’t ready to dip down into the minor leagues, De Aza’s value grows. I am not saying the Mets will get a Top-10 prospect, but they could get considerably more than expected, especially if De Aza plays well.

The Mets have an embarrassment of riches right now in the outfield, but with one injury, everything can change. What would you do with Alejandro De Aza? Tell us in the comments section below.

About Michael Ganci

Michael Ganci is the Co-Founder of the Daily Stache, along with Matthew Falkenbury. Since 2008, Ganci has eat, drank and dreamt all things Mets, and he'd have it no other way. Feel free to follow him on Twitter at @DailyStache.

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