Old Habits Die Hard

I’ll put it bluntly: I don’t get the obsession with Stephen Drew.

If there was a market for him, wouldn’t he be signed already?  I was just reading that teams that have been interested in him are reluctant to part with a draft pick, since they’d have to compensate the Boston Red Sox with a draft pick if they do give him a contract.  Drew is 30 years old.  He considers himself a “Top 5 shortshop” in baseball.  Which begd the question, do teams agree with that sentiment?  Because wouldn’t he have a contract already if he truly was?

Yet, I hear grumblings in the Mets community about Drew.  Drew this.  Drew that.  I’m sure the main reason why is that Drew is not Ruben Tejada, who apparently came ready to play this year.  Well, Stephen Drew can kiss my butt.

Yeah, I said it.

Ruben TejadaMost of the pro-Drew sentiment I think is rooted in the fact that he is simply not Ruben Tejada.  In my opinion, Tejada has been unfairly maligned.  The same folks criticizing Tejada are also the same people willing to give Ike Davis another chance to prove himself, though he’s been in the majors for four years now.  (By the way, I support Ike Davis, despite the news that he hid and lied about an injury last year surfaced.  But I’m not anti-Tejada either).  Ruben Tejada is mostly guilty of that fact that he is not Jose Reyes.

Reyes is never coming back, folks.

Signing Drew now would be akin to making a move for the sake of making a move.  See, these deals done to placate certain people, whether it’s Fred Wilpon (hello, Curtis Granderson), the media or Mets fans themselves.

I say, it’s time to stop.

Making moves just for the sake of making them has NEVER worked for this franchise.  Let’s take a look at Jason Bay.  Need I say more?  He was the tip of the iceberg of a contract thrown to player in order to placate certain people who were upset that the Mets didn’t get Matt Holliday.  Instead, Bay’s “Hall of Very Good” career came to a screeching halt in Flushing (where careers come to die, usually…see: Alomar, Roberto), and he’s now retired.  Trust me, I cannot wait to hear the peanut gallery when he collects his annuity payment from the Mets like Bobby Bonilla in a few years.

Let’s get back to Curtis Granderson, the “crown jewel” of the Mets outfield going into 2014.  I don’t hate Grandy.  I just wasn’t in love with him.  Mostly because I have some serious post-traumatic Mets disorder with giving someone who is injury-prone a four year contract, because we know how well those have worked out for the Mets.  I’m sure Granderson will prove me wrong.  At least, I hope he does.

Then there was Bartolo Colon, who in my opinion wasn’t a horrible signing.

I guess my point is, there have been some signings.  Some good, some okay, some WTF (See: Young, Chris).  Yet, I feel like it’s never quite enough for the peanut gallery.  We need to SPEND! We need EVERY EXPENSIVE OVERRATED PLAYER ON THE MARKET.  Blah.

How much selective amnesia is there behind that thinking?  This is why I support Sandy Alderson.  He’s not making moves simply to make a move.  Say what you will about the Chris Young signing, Nelson Cruz has had an injury-ridden career, and has only surpassed 150 games once since his debut in 2005.

Meanwhile, if Alderson had given Cruz a contract, I’d imagine that there would be critics (like me) who would lambast the signing on a guy who has been injured quite a bit.

Anyway, haven’t we all learned that the move for the sake of making one never seems to work?  That’s why I wasn’t 100% in love with the Granderson signing.  I guess you know that whole fool me once, fool me twice business.

Which leads me to Stephen Drew.  Drew is a lifetime .264/.329/.435  hitter over a career that has lasted eight years.   Hardly noteworthy.  And definitely not “Top 5” material.  He was on the World Champion Boston Red Sox last year.  Yawn.  Ruben Tejada has only been in the majors four years, and has spent much of the time injured.  Why are people so quick to judge his performance based on two injury-ridden years?

Furthermore, there is still a thinly veiled grudge about his showing up late to a non-mandatory practice camp in 2012.  He stayed at a conditioning camp when players were once again showing up to non-mandatory camp.  Meanwhile, if he had left conditioning early, he’d get questioned on his commitment to his performance, et cetera.

One story from Metsmerized Online suggests that he looks good in the batting cage in Port St. Lucie.  Yet, the corresponding story is that the Mets are “frustrated” with Tejada.

Leave it to the mainstream media to plant that the Mets are “frustrated” with a player who has been unfairly maligned by the same outlets.  What gives?

The Mets will sign Drew, a malcontent, whose career comes to die in Flushing.  Or the Mets sign Drew, who plays well for one, maybe two years, then sucks and is an albatross for the remaining years.

Oh, and keep in mind, EVERYONE gets injured when they come here.

My point?  Did I have one?  Probably not, since I do tend to write on a stream of consciousness.

The move for the sake of making a move has never worked, especially for the Mets.  And a player like Stephen Drew does not immediately make them world beaters or remotely better.   I say ride out the storm with Ruben Tejada, and see what happens.  After all, it’s not his fault he had to replace a wildly popular player and the best shortstop in Mets history.

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