Saturday, May 10, 2008

Don't Be an Ogre, Willie. Platoon Shrek

With a doubleheader today, it is almost a certainty that Ramon Castro will make his season debut today. Castro has missed the entire season thus far due to recurring hamstring problems. His durability has always been an issue which is why the Mets could never really trust him to be their primary catcher.

The monkeys were charmed by Raul Casanova's performance as a fill-in (1 homer, 6 RBI .283) and we hope he pasases through waivers and stays with the organization as he far outperformed Mike DeFelice in that third catcher insurance role. But for all the love some fans were giving Casanova, he's no Ramon Castro.

Last year, Castro seemed to hit a homerun every time he started. The monkeys were actually happy to see Loduca injured sometimes because it meant more playing time for Castro. In fact, Castro hit 11 homers in just 144 at bats. His .OPS was .887. He also was a rare Mets player that excelled in big spots. He hit .319 with runners on base. He hit .292 with 2 outs and runners in scoring position. The Mets aren't exactly filled with players who are succeeding in those spots this year.

Castro's right-handed bat also balances the lineup against left-handed pitchers. Brian Schneider has been solid and has handled the pitching staff well. He's also hitting .240 vs. lefties and .350 vs. righties. There is no need to wear him out. This could and should be a very productive platoon situation. Randolph tends to work his primary catcher hard. The monkeys' recommendation would keep Schneider fresh into September and hopefully October.

Shrek's back!

No comments: