Sunday, August 1, 2010

It's OK to Trade Bobby Parnell

This I don't like. From MetsBlog:

(Omar) Minaya said the Mets were “close” to making a deal in the final half hour before the deadline, but considering teams were continuing to ask for Ike Davis, Jon Niese, Ruben Tejada and Bobby Parnell, the Mets were unable to find a fit.

Now that is a surprisingly reasonable assessment of the situation by Minaya, except for including Parnell in that mix. It's just silly to include a pitcher who has failed as both a starter and a reliever with three guys who the Mets should legitimately be interested in retaining.

Davis is the starting first baseman and there is no one in the organization ready to play the position competently on the major league level. I've compared him multiple times to Adam LaRoche, since that is the career path I think you can expect from Ike: a .275/.350/.475 line with 20 to 25 homers a year. That's not a superstar, but the Mets won't be paying Davis like a superstar for the next six years.

I'm more much more excited about Niese, who I think has the potential to be a good #3 starter on a playoff team or a #2 starter on an also-ran. There are very few pitchers in baseball I would trade Niese for - Roy Oswalt and Ted Lilly were not among them. I expect both Davis and Niese to be Mets five years from now and for both to be important contributors to a playoff team.

I am more ambivalent about Tejada. His development may have been stunted by the Mets' over-aggressive promotion schemes of the Tony Bernazard regime, but the response to that idea is that Tejada may actually be a guy who really comes into his own in two years. If Tejada had been traded I would not have been heartbroken, but I am happier that he's here. He's still only 20 years old and the Mets really should commit to leaving him in Buffalo until the end of the 2011 season to see what they have in Tejada.

Parnell, though ... Parnell is a different story. He simply has not been very good at any level throughout his professional career; he has consistently put up WHIPS over 1.400 in the minors and was knocked around in whatever role the Mets used him in last year. Parnell is being lit up against lefties this season (a .345/.387/.379 line) and looks to all the world to be a 25-year-old hard-throwing righty specialist with nothing on his resume to make a neutral observer believe he can be more than that.

I don't know what Parnell would have fetched the Mets in a trade. I seriously doubt it would have been enough to make the Mets playoff contenders anyway - were the Marlins offering Josh Johnson and Dan Uggla for Parnell? But my message to Omar Minaya is this - if someone approached you with a trade offer for Bobby Parnell, do not hesitate to pull the trigger.

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