The Mets are looking into several alternatives at shortstop instead of Ruben Tejada. Tejada has looked mediocre at best, only having 3 hits in 25 AB's this spring with lackluster defense.. Yeah, he went to a special clinic in the winter, but it has not translated on the field as the Mets had hoped.
The problem is, at what price do the Mets get another shortstop?
Do the Mets forfeit another draft pick and cave in to the demands of Scott Boras to sign Stephen Drew?
The Mets have been willing only to go 1 year at this point, but Drew and Boras want more. The Mets are only offering $9.5 Million, but Boras has indicated that they could look towards the $14 Million mark.
For this to work, the Mets would have to give Drew a multiyear deal. The problem is the Mets most likely will go shopping for a shortstop via free agency in 2015. The big names will be J.J. Hardy, Hanley Ramirez, Jed Lowrie, and Asdrubal Cabrera.
Second Scenario: The Mets can go out and try to trade for a shortstop. The Mariners and D'Backs have shortstops available, but the Mets have to find out if the price is right.
The Mariners have infielder Nick Franklin available, who has been on the Mets radar for some time. The Mets have sent scouts to see if Franklin can handle the position at short. The Rays and Orioles have reported some interest, but see him as a logical fit at second base. Franklin hit 12 HR's a year ago and definitely give the Mets some much added pop to the lineup. Franklin is batting .235 this spring.
The D'Backs have Didi Gregorius have available and have apparently given the starting job to fellow shortstop Chris Owings, who has been compared to Craig Biggio. Gregorius is a left hand batter and has the reputation for his defensive prowess around short. The Mets have to figure if his bat will be an upgrade over Tejada. Gregorius is batting .205 this spring.
The price for these shortstops will be high as in any case when given up a prospect. The Mariners and D'Backs have been sending scouts to watch Mets prospects in their system. The Mets have a abundance of young quality arms, but which one will the Mets use as a chip. The Mets have their number one prospect Noah Syndergaard probably marked as a untouchable, but a guy like Rafael Montero might get teams interested. Then the Mets have lower tier guys like Logan Verrett, Jacob deGrom and they also have Jenrry Mejia and Jeurys Familia, who might draw some interest as well.
Mejia might be the guy the Mets look to ship for a shortstop. He clearly is being blocked by Daisuke Matsuzaka and the Mets are not sure if they want him to convert into a reliever at this point. He has clearly proven he can handle the hill every 5th day as he did last year before getting hurt.
Familia is a pitcher the Mets have marked as a potential closer in the future. His velocity has been in the Mid to upper 90's and I don't see the Mets depleting the pen for a shortstop.
Montero is a pitcher with great control and stuff based on what many have said about him. His upside is great at this point, but do the Mets want to weaken their depth at starting pitcher with a whole season in front of them?
Other Pitchers like Verrett and deGrom can be had and the Mets are hoping that teams will draw to them. The Mets had the same situation this offseason with Ike Davis as they tried to price him high, but got no response. Teams must be patting themselves on their back for not getting in that debauchery.