A report on Wednesday claims the Mets tried to trade Daniel Murphy over the winter but no team would meet the Mets sky-high asking price.
Why did the Mets apparently try to trade their second best hitter? Because he is a crummy fielder? Or maybe because at more than $5 million, he was getting too expensive? No, because he was not adhering to the Mets hitting theory that on-base percentage is the most important thing ever. You know, the same theory that has worked so well with Lucas Duda.
Andy Martino writes in the Daily News:
The team tried to trade its second baseman in December, motivated in large measure by the belief that he did not buy into their offensive philosophy, which stresses on-base percentage. The front office shot high, asking for players like Baltimore pitching prospect Dylan Bundy, and refused to accept less.
That is why Murphy remains a Met, for now. But the perception persists that his .319 OBP last year stands as evidence that he isn’t totally on board.
Daniel Murphy denies this, saying he is trying but admits, “It’s really hard to do. It’s hard. It is hard.”
Murphy explains that the philosophy is not to just sit back and take a walk; it is to wait for a perfect pitch that a hitter can drive.
“They want you to be able to get on base, and when you do get base hits, they want them to be doubles,” Murphy said.
That’s all well and good, but Murphy is a guy who can take a pitch slightly off the plate and get a single. That should be good enough, but apparently not for Sandy Alderson and his brilliant underlings.
This is another example of forcing a player to do something with which he is not totally comfortable. Daniel Murphy has proven that he can hit; just leave him alone. Why does everyone have to play the same way?
Alderson was right; he should have just traded Murphy if he insisted that Murphy play Alderson’s way. Trying for Dylan Bundy is fine, but there was no way the Orioles were going to part with the number two ranked prospect in all of baseball for Daniel Murphy. Alderson should have lowered his demands instead of trying to change Murphy.
So now we will likely see an unsteady Murphy — unable to change his ways, but forced to try to the point that he will not be able to hit the way he usually does. Sandy Alderson is a hell of a general manager.