In my latest column at the Roto Times, I examine the Mets' battle at second base:
It's not difficult to realize why Matsui's name was included in just about every trade rumor coming out of New York this winter. Entering the final year of his contract, he clearly has no long-term future with the Mets. Unfortunately, the $8 million he's due to receive this year appears to have scared off all potential suitors, making it very likely that he'll open the year on the 25-man roster.
But will he open the year in the starting lineup, too? He's hit just .200 through 35 spring training at-bats, failing to impress while younger players like Jeff Keppinger (.286) and Anderson Hernandez (.296) have performed well. Could one of those unproven but eager rookies steal the starting job?
I break down each candidate in the full column, but in hindsight I could have just written it in Haiku form like they did over at Amazin' Avenue:
A-Hern might be the smart choice.
Too bad, though. It's Kaz.
I'd be very, very hesitant about drafting Matsui this year. Even if he does emerge with the job to start the year, Hernandez and Keppinger will be nipping at his heels all year long, and both players have proven over the past couple of years that at the very least they're capable of hitting for average, and Hernandez has a lot of cheap speed potential.