So the Mets actually obtained some value for Jeff Francoeur, as they aquired Joaquin Arias, a 25 year-old middle infielder once traded for Alex Rodriguez, from Texas. Arias, who is out of minor league options, will provide depth for the Mets at 2b as they evaluate their options for 2011. Like Francoeur, Arias doesn’t walk much, but he swings at less pitches and makes contact at a higher percentage. He has elite speed (7.1 spd rating according to fangraphs) and his career .287/.322/.379 in 242 major league plate appearances isn’t atrocious, all things considered. He likely is an improvement over Ruben Tejada and even once-obp-stud Luis Castillo.
In 9 seasons of minor league ball, Arias owns a triple slash of .285/.317/.378. MinorLeagueSplits has most of his minor league data and they show no profound platoon split. He performed a touch better against lefties (.709 ops) vs righties (.687 ops). His batted ball profile isn’t very impressive as he pounds the ball into the ground 45% of the time, hitting line drives about 17% of the time and fly balls around 38% of the time. He also hits quite a few infield fly balls (14%). We’ll see if the Mets can mold Arias into a league average or better second basemen. They must utilize his speed.
Lucas Duda, 6’5 and 245 lbs is a beast of a 24 year old. He is quickly becoming a saber-fan favorite. He will start in LF for the Mets tonight, as the team begins to evaluate whether his minor league success can translate at the major league level. In 4 minor league seasons and 1795 pas, Duda hit .284/.381/.463 from the left side of the plate. He is likely a platoon outfielder (.622 ops against lefties) who has more than shown he can mash right handed pitching (.938 ops). He’s owned above a .400 wOBA in 2010 between AA and AAA and had 17 homeruns through 298 pas for the Bisons. I’m personally extremely excited to see Duda hit at the major league level. It’s a bit comical that the ideal platoonmate for Duda would have been Francoeur. Oh well.