Late Night Changeup – Mets release Adrian Gonzalez, call up Dominic Smith
Major changes were made to the Mets’ roster, but it is too late?
Thinking towards the future, the Mets made a slew of moves late last night after their nationally televised game against the Yankees. The team announced they have released 1B Adrian Gonzalez, designated catcher Jose Lobaton and recalled Dominic Smith and Ty Kelly.
After tonight’s game we have given Adrián González his unconditional release. On Tuesday, we will designate catcher Jose Lobaton for assignment, will recall Dominic Smith from Las Vegas and will select the contract of Ty Kelly from Las Vegas. #Mets
— New York Mets (@Mets) June 11, 2018
While the move was not surprising, the timing was. After the Mets signed Gonzalez to the league minimum this season, the move was considered a win-win situation. The deal wasn’t that much of a hassle for the team after all. The team chose the experience of Gonzalez over the younger Smith, citing the fact the latter needed more growth.
In 54 games, Gonzalez had a slash line of .237/.358/.485 with six home runs, 40 hits and 34 strikeouts. At the beginning of the season, Gonzalez seemed to have exceeded expectations at the plate, while providing a steady hand at first. The last few games were on par with what people expected however, hitting .172 in his final 17 games. A force to be reckoned with at one point in his career, it is unknown if he will be given another shot by any other team this season.
With Gonzalez out, Dominic Smith has an opportunity to prove himself once again. Injured before the season started, Smith has a slash line of .262/.346/,374 in 55 games in Las Vegas with two home runs and around 60 hits. He also looks thinner, something that has been an issue for him in the past.
In regards to Lobaton, this is the second time he has been designated by the team. With the trade for Devin Mesoraco and Kevin Plawecki’s return, Lobaton ended up not having a place on the team. Ty Kelly, a former member of Team Israel in the World Baseball Classic, returns to the team after spending the latter part of the 2017 season with the Phillies. In 40 games with the Mets, Kelly hit .237/.347/.339 with one home run and seven RBIs.
The hope from all of this is that Smith will finally become the premier first baseman the team was looking for when he was drafted in the first round in 2013. Jay Bruce should be getting some time at first base as well, to help ease pressure off of Smith. With Peter Alonso raking in the minors, the time is now for the 22-year old California native to show he belongs.