The New York Mets have just agreed to a 2 year/$17 million dollar deal with third baseman Todd Frazier. This deal includes a $500K bonus for Frazier if the Mets trade him later on down the road. Like most MLB deals, it is still dependent on whether Frazier passes his physical, which is why the Mets have yet to announce the signing.
If he does pass his physical, the Mets are looking at someone who can finally lock down the hot corner for them. Over the course of 7 seasons at third base, Frazier has had a +30 DRS, with a +10 DRS in 2017 alone. Without the addition of Frazier, Asdrúbal Cabrera would have had to make the transition to third. While Cabrera has had some experience playing third, it is obvious it’s not his most comfortable position. Cabrera has had just as many errors playing 45 games at third base as he has had playing 242 games at second base. He has even mentioned that if he has to transition to any position, he would rather move to second than third.
These defensive strengths however are just about all the Mets are getting with Frazier. Last season was one of Frazier’s least productive, as his batting average dropped for a third consecutive year to .213. His home runs and runs batted in dropped as well going from 40 and 98 to 27 and 76. The only offensive category that has improved for Frazier is his on base percentage as he took the most walks ever in his career in 2017. While it is possible that Frazier could have a bounce back year at the plate in 2018, I find it highly unlikely that he will be able to regain the form that he once had in Cincinnati.
While Frazier may not be the best offensive option for the Mets, he certainly is the most consistent option, especially for a team that has been plagued with constant injuries. Frazier has started over 140 games in each of the last 5 seasons. This is a blessing for the Mets. Since David Wright’s injury in 2015, the Mets have yet to have a player start more than 52 games at third base in a single season. The Mets can finally sit back and relax a little, at least at that position, knowing they have someone they can rely on.
Overall, the addition of Frazier, along with a healthy team, makes the NL East a lot more interesting. Not only could the Mets compete for a Wild Card spot in 2018, but they could also compete with the Washington Nationals for the division title.
By: Logan Stevens (@Round_TheBases)