Lots of chatter over at the Flushing University message boards today (my column will be up late tonight or tomorrow morning). I weighed in on Luis Castillo there:
"Luis Castillo's contract is bad not because of the annual dollar value, but because of the length. Two years with a club option is the most the Mets should've offered. Four guaranteed years was a disaster.
Mets fans who wanted to give Ruben Gotay an opportunity to start (and I was one of them) had to know that it was never a realistic option. No one - not the owner, not the general manager, not the manager and not the mainstream media - would've been comfortable if the Mets started 2008 without an "established" second baseman. The Mets are a franchise always desperate to win right away and therefore are generally unwilling to trust any position to an untested player unless it is the absolute last option. It is a silly and short-sighted way to run an organization, but the Mets generally do a lot of silly and short-sighted things.
If Castillo were batting eighth in the lineup - where he would be more of an asset than a liability - no one would be worrying about the offense he provides. The fact that he hits #2 is the problem. I mean, if you really want to get crazy, a lineup with Castillo leading off and Reyes batting second would actually make more sense, because Jose has a far better chance to drive in Luis than the other way around."