TW writes: The way a team gets people interested in watching them in times like these is to play your kids, ready or not. I know that starts arbitration clocks and what not but this is a franchise that shouldn't worry about spending money, considering most of the guys they bring up will be traded before their arbitration comes up.
As far as Francouer, he has reverted to career totals, more RBI, more strikeouts. His leadership and defensive skills are apparent and batting in seventh in a healthy order he will be fine for us. Or would you rather have to sign a pitcher, a left fielder a first baseman AND a right fielder? Even if times were good, financially, that would be a tall order. Lackey, a top tier left fielder and hope Murphy matures into a .280avg/.450 slu hitter by march or Ike Davis kills it in spring and totally blows projections aside. Let's not rid ourselves of another piece because you don't believe in intangibles.
You know who believes in intangibles? Tim McCarver.
Intangibles, by their very definition, do not exist. An intangible is something that cannot be quantified. That's like saying I bring intangibles to the basketball court when we play instead of talent or hustle. In the end, it's better to have talent and hustle.
EVERYBODY has intangibles, when you get right down to it. But people put so much stock in their own perception of intangibles that they are shocked when someone sees things differently. You talk of Francouer's "leadership skills" being "apparent." Based on what? Has this team suddenly risen from the depths of its misery and made a headlong charge at the Phillies? Are they running faster and jumping higher? Do they appear to be any more of a professional baseball team then they did the day Frenchy graced us with his presence?
No, Francouer is being hailed as a leader because he's a white guy who smiles when he talks to the media. Every single "leader" in baseball has those two attributes except for Derek Jeter - and he's still half-white. Seriously, name me all the black and Latino "leaders" in baseball. You can probably count them on one hand - because influential baseball writers are almost invariably middle-aged white guys who tend to see leadership reflecting in a person that looks more like themselves.
The part that I didn't get to, but which you brought up for me, is the idea of "playing the kids" instead of Sheffield. I wanted to write about that as well, because in most situations it does make more sense to play the kids instead. The problem is, the Mets don't have any kids to play. Buffalo and Binghamton are the two worst minor league teams in baseball, so they're not exactly teeming with young talent. Here are the active outfielders on those two rosters today:
Which of those guys is going to attract more interest than Gary Sheffield?