By: Glenn Brewer

How The Mets Got Here: Player Profile: Michael Cuddyer


As with many teams and players, this baseball season has been one of ups and downs for the New York Mets. No one had bigger expectations coming into this season than first year Met, Michael Cuddyer. The veteran player was brought to this Mets team to bring some necessary power and professional hitting to a thin lineup. Being a close friend of the captain, David Wright, made this move a no brainer from day one of free agency. Although many fans were skeptical about the salary of $8,500,000 per year for the two years Cuddyer signed, the biggest concern was Cuddyer’s health. This was a 36 year old player that played just 49 games for the Colorado Rockies the year prior to signing with the Mets.

The start of the season was neither impressive nor disappointing for Cuddyer. To the surprise of the fans, Cuddyer remained healthy enough to play everyday, unlike his friend David Wright. Although Cuddyer was able to play consistently, the power numbers that we were grown accustomed to did not show. In July it was apparent that Cuddyer was hurt, and more importantly slumping greatly at the plate. The Mets offense was at an all time low and Cuddyer was right in the middle of the mess. Like many other Mets outfielders signed to lucrative contracts, Cuddyer was not living up to his contract. Finally, Cuddyer took his expected turn on the DL. At this point, not many expected to see Cuddyer again in 2015 nonetheless contribute.

With all the buzz of the additions of Conforto, Johnson, Uribe and Cespedes, the focus was on the lineup at hand. Soon Cuddyer was rumored to be ready to come back to the club. Say what you will about Cuddyer as a player, the guy is a great teammate and a fierce competitor. The minute Cuddyer returned to the lineup, he came back on a tear. For a short string of games, Cuddyer was the hottest hitter in the lineup. More importantly, Cuddyer was able to come up with clutch hits and the power expected from his signing in the winter appeared.   The series in Philadelphia was the pinnacle of the season for Cuddyer. Cuddyer’s approach at the plate has been gritty as he shortened up his swing with two strikes and has taken the pitch to the opposite field. On the inside pitches he has turned on and generated power and lift. Playing first base limited his exposure to injury for the short term.

Unfortunately Cuddyer has been banged up lately, but his wrist is healthy enough to pinch hit recently. The leadership and timely hitting will be very important in the playoffs for the Mets. Whether he is coming off the bench or starting, Cuddyer will do whatever is necessary to win. It took awhile to see, but Cuddyer has been a very important acquisition.

About Glenn Brewer

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