Friday, October 26, 2007

Go for Abreu

The Phillies couldn't wait to get rid of him. The Yankees grabbed him, but now a rumor's buzzing around that the Yankees might not pick up Bobby Abreu's option, making him a free agent. That's half of the rumor. The other half is that if he gains his freedom, the Mets might add him to their roster.

At 33, Abreu's not a youngster anymore compared to players like Reyes and Wright. On the other hand, he is a youngster when next to Orlando Hernandez and Moise Alou. Call him middle-aged, baseballwise.

In 2007 he played in 158 games, drove in 101 runs, and had an OPS of .814 (.369 OBP +.445 slugging avergage).

Here's how those numbers stack up against last season's Mets outfielders, excluding Carlos Beltran, who's a mainstay in center field.

Alou, 40, played in 87 games, drove in 49 runs, and had an OPS of .916 (.392 + .524).
Shawn Green, 34, played in 130 games, drove in 46 runs, and had an OPS of .782 (.352 + .430).
Lastings Milledge, 22, played in 59 games, drove in 29 runs, and had an OPS of .787 (.341 + .446).
Endy Chavez, 29, played in 71 games, drove in 17 runs, and had an OPS of .705 (.325 + .380).

Abreu played in more games than any of the above four Mets, drove in more than twice as many runs, and had a higher OPS than all but Alou. But Abreu's skill may be declining, though not as fast as Shawn Green's. Last season Abreu's OBP sank below .400 for the first time since 2001.

If the Yankees decide to let Abreu take the same route as Joe Torre, the Mets should take the risk and make signing him a priority.


  1. The only way I see Abreu coming to the Mets is if they decide to let Moises Alou leave. Abreu's .814 OPS. in 2007 was actually middle- of-the-pack production when you take into account the performance of most other right fielders.

  2. In my view, Abreu had an off-year last year. Over the past eight seasons, not counting last year, his lowest OBP was .405. And over the last 12 seasons, he only had one with a lower slugging average than he had last season.

  3. It could be that, or it could be a sign of things to come... I'd sign him at the same price I'd sign Alou, on the condition that the contract isn't any longer than two years, but I doubt he can't get more than that.