The Mets are planning to non-tender left-handed slugger Daniel Vogelbach, reports Mike Puma from the New York Post. Vogelbach, 31 next month, slashed .233/.339/.404 in 104 games with the Mets this year and was projected for $2.6MM in his final trip through arbitration by MLBTR’s Matt Swartz. He’ll now hit free agency and be eligible to sign with any of MLB’s 30 clubs.
A second-round pick by the Cubs in the 2011 draft, Vogelbach made his MLB debut with the Mariners back in 2016, though he wouldn’t receive consistent playing time at the big league level until 2019. He was an All-Star for Seattle that year, slashing .208/.341/.439 with 30 homers in 558 trips to the plate. Vogelbach split his shortened 2020 campaign between the Mariners, Blue Jays, and Brewers before settling in with Milwaukee in a part-time role for the 2021 season.
After slashing an essentially league average .215/.343/.385 (101 wRC+) with 15 homers in 394 plate appearances from 2020-21, Vogelbach signed with the Pirates on a big league deal for the 2022 season. He hit fairly with the Pirates (116 wRC+) but really took off after a midseason trade to the Mets, for whom he slashed .255/.393/.436 (143 wRC+) in 183 trips to the plate down the stretch as a part-time DH. Vogelbach returned to Queens in that same role for 2023 but failed to replicate his 2022 production in the role with a wRC+ of just 104.
Vogelbach will enter the free agent market as a quality bench piece or part-time slugger for a club at first base or DH, though his glovework at first is generally regarded as questionable. While Vogelbach possesses a strong .240/.362/.452 slash line against right-handed pitchers for his career, same-handed pitching has crushed him during his time in the majors; he’s hit just .129/.248/.215 in 189 career games against southpaws, meaning any acquiring club would almost assuredly not be interested in Vogelbach for an everyday role.