It’s already known that the Athletics have checked in on free-agent catcher Russell Martin. Add the Mets “and a few other teams” to the list, Jon Heyman of MLB Network tweets. As Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported two weeks ago, Martin has turned down offers since last season to deal with a “family matter,” but the 37-year-old does intend to continue his career in 2020.
It’s unknown how recent the Mets’ interest in Martin was, but it does look as if the team could use a competent veteran to team with starter Wilson Ramos. Martin happens to be far and away the best backstop remaining in free agency, where available players at his position are all but nonexistent at this point. Martin appeared in a career-low 83 games with the Dodgers in 2019, but he posted 1.2 fWAR with a .220/.337/.330 line and an above-average 12 percent walk rate in 249 plate appearances. He also kept up his eminently useful ways behind the late, where he finished both 17th among all catchers in Baseball Prospectus’ Fielding Runs Above Average metric and as a pitch framer.
Mets backup Tomas Nido was similarly impressive as a defender last season (19th in FRAA and as a framer), but his offense doesn’t compare to even that of an aging Martin. The 25-year-old Nido has basically been unplayable as a hitter since he began garnering a decent chunk of playing time two seasons ago, having batted .182/.219/.286 in 234 trips to the plate dating back to 2018.
Behind Ramos and Nido, the most established option in the New York organization is non-roster invitee Rene Rivera, who – despite having earned the trust of prominent right-hander Noah Syndergaard in the past – has never been much of an offensive threat in the majors. He also hasn’t seen much time in the bigs over the past couple years. The Mets’ backup catcher situation looks ripe for an upgrade, then, and Martin may be the one to provide it.
Go get him Ben! Quickly! There is no time!
Im sure the Blue Jays could trade Grease McGuire for a young arm or a young outfielder to help now. It would give the “lefty” a new home to get away from his recent troubl. Jays bring back Martin to play 25-30% and mentor Jansen again. Kirk could be ready in a year anyway…
I really like rivera and wish he was the backup. Better offense than Nido, good relationships with pitchers as well.
The Mets need him
Chief Two Hands
“I think we should name our son…Jazz!”
“Do we have to?”
“Hey, you lost the bet. That means I get to choose.”
“I knew I would regret that…”
His name isn’t Jazz, it’s Jasrado
I thought it was short for ‘Jazzhands’…✋
Please sign him Brodie
Meanwhile in his office at Citifield….Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen has a idea….
(BVW with his Thurston Howell III WASPY dialect voice)
BVW- I simply must sign Russell Martin to a mega long term contract with us. I ,know Ill invite him to my estate at the Hampton’s . A BBQ. Everyone loves a BBQ. Whats more fun than spending the Summer in Queens in 90 degree weather with 80% humidity with drunken fans saying rude things about your mother..
Austin, Be a good intern and get Mickey Callaway on the phone.
Intern-Mr. Callaway is now employed by the Angels. He’s their pitching coach.
BVW-He is? Who fired him?
BVM- I knew that. I knew that. Makes sense Mickey + Anaheim they kinda go together.
BVM- Get Beltran on the phone.
Intern-You fired him too.
BVM-On his wife?
BVM-How do you cheat on a baseball? Make a date and go out with a football. I’m confused.
Intern-Never mind sir.
BVM-Why am I always the last to know.?? Please tell me I didn’t hire Bobby Valentine…
Intern-No sir you didn’t
BVM- What a relief. Ahh the heck with it. Get Mike Scioscia on the phone. And call Bushwood Country Club and set up a 1PM tee time. i Need to get my mind of this team for awhile.
What, no Lovey Howell at the Hampton’s estate?
She was going to help” convince “Russell say no more say no more. Oh dear
Don’t forget your meds again
The Mets need him, go get him.
Reunion with the Pirates? They wanted to get catching help and JR Murphy is not the answer
dynamite drop in monty
Sorry folks, parks closed. Moose out front shoulda told ya
Why?? Supposed to get younger, not older
Kevin Michael Farrell
As TdA laughs his @$$ off at the bank and kills The Mets with The Braves in 2020!