Did Mets pull the plug on Emaus too soon?

Imagine, for a moment, that the Mets gave up on David Wright after the first 10 games of his big league career, in which he batted .216 with one home run and a .635 OPS. Imagine they shunned Jose Reyes after he hit .209 with one walk and one stolen base over his first 25 big league games in 2003. Imagine they scratched Jon Niese off their plans after he posted a 7.07 ERA during his cup of coffee in 2008.

Usually, rookies struggle. For every Mike Stanton in Major League history, there are a dozen others who crawl out to slow start. All of which is to say that perhaps the Mets should have given their former starting second baseman, Brad Emaus, more of a chance.

Emaus is in no way as talented as Wright, Reyes or even Niese, but — as the Mets went out of their way to say in Spring Training — he had the tools and Minor League track record to become a productive regular. To that end, the Mets named him their starting second baseman over Daniel Murphy, Luis Castillo and Justin Turner, promising him enough playing time to prove himself.

Then Tuesday, after 14 games and 37 at-bats, the Mets suddenly decided that Emaus wasn’t good enough. They designated him for assignment, likely ending his tenure with the organization, and recalled Turner to take his place.

Let me preface this by saying that I would have had no issue with the Mets naming Turner their starting second baseman back in Spring Training — he had the most impressive spring of any of the candidates, along with an adequate Minor League resume. But the Mets committed themselves to Emaus, so it’s only fair to stay committed now. Emaus certainly played poorly (his 14.8% line drive rate explains away his .214 BABIP), but lots of rookies play poorly at first. If the Mets thought he was good enough to start at second base, why not give him at least two or three full months to prove himself? Why not now, in what most consider a rebuilding year for the Mets?

The Mets have yet to explain or defend their decision; that coverage will come later on Mets.com. But this is a puzzling lack of consistency from the new front office, which was supposed to be more broad-minded than the old regime.

—–Follow along on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo.

11 Comments

The only reason they designated him the starter was because of the Rule 5 investment they had in him. If the Mets didn’t have their collective heads up their rears, we would have had Orlando hudson a long time ago.

Wow…that’s insane! I didn’t even know they did that!
I am very unhappy…they never gave the kid a chance… Everybody is sucking right now, why put it all on the kid for God’s sake?
Stupid stupid stupid… why am I a Mets fan???

Let me add this: Wasn’t Brad the best bat out of the bunch?
Didn’t he have the most pop??? WTF? I don’t get it, so now they opted for a guy w/ less offensive potential at a time when they need more offense? The Mets are so backwards… my stomach hurts.

Completely disagree with you. This is an entirely different regime. Omar never made a move or a decision to save his life. Let Luis languish on the bench at the end of 2010 w/o making a recommendation to ownership to cut him. He left Ollie to sit in the BP for 26 days at a time without making the same recommendation after he refused to go to the minors. They left Reyes bat right handed only and not place him on the DL. Omar waffled back and forth and never did a thing. Sandy is entirely different. Young has pain BAM he is on the DL. Emiss and Boyer dont perform BAM they are gone. This group is quick to make a decision particuarly with fringe guys like Boyer. This regime is consistent. They are quick to make decisions for the betterment of the team and the inmates no longer run the asylum.

-Pilam76 on twitter

What’s wrong with this team??? 16 games into the season and they cut him loose!!! WTF!!!

I agree with Bryan. They should have signed Orlando Hudson, who WANTED TO PLAY FOR THE METS. Keeping Castillo as long as they did is beyond my comprehension. I feel for Emaus, but he may be back once he’s more secure in his ability as a second baseman. Watching him play was painful. Sure double plays were not turned and too many errors on simple grounders.

Do you remember the Double Header vs. the Rockies. He not only can’t bat but he can not field. I’m tired of the Mets giving everyone a chance. Finally they are being smart and canning those who can not perform!

This is a smart baseball move.

Completely agree with Scott. Reward performance. Make decisions.

Stupid comparison. Reyes and Wright were top rank prospects whereas Emaus is not. Niese is a pitcher and teams are always more patient with pitching given the scarcity. Emaus is a AAAA player, nothing more.

After suffering through the idiots that mismanaged the Mets for years, I’m happily willing to give Alderson and Co. the benefit of the doubt. I wasn’t that impressed with what I had seen from Emaus.

I would have liked to see a little more committment to Emaus after naming him the opening day starter, but I am not unhappy with the decision.

Alderson and Collins seem to have a good baseball savvy to them and I am not concerned about the losses (let’s face it, everyone should have known this was a rebuilding year.) I’d rather them test out their young talent and see what sticks.

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