While there has been some conflicting information on the Mets’ interest in a meeting with right-hander Bronson Arroyo, general manager Sandy Alderson has another free agent on his radar.
FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports that Alderson had a meeting with Curtis Granderson yesterday. We heard about a month ago that the Mets had “preliminary interest” in the free agent outfielder, so this latest report would seem to indicate that they could be serious about making a run at signing him. Or at the very least, that they haven’t ruled out the possibility.
Andy Martino of the New York Daily News hears that Granderson wants a minimum of three years on his next contract. He is attached to draft pick compensation, but one possible advantage for the Mets is that they would only have to surrender their second-round pick in order to sign him.
The Mets already signed Chris Young to a one-year deal late last month, but they are said to still be on the lookout for other outfielders, preferably of the power-hitting variety. Granderson would satisfy both criteria. While the 32-year-old was limited to just 61 games this past season due to a pair of freak injuries, he amassed 84 home runs from 2011-2012. Granted, his age and strikeout rate are concerns and he would likely lose a few homers making the switch from Yankee Stadium to Citi Field, but he would give the Mets a legitimate power threat behind David Wright.
Veteran utilityman Reid Brignac is in camp with the Astros on a minor league deal. The 31-year-old is close to being done as a major leaguer as he owns a career .219/.264/.309 triple-slash line across parts of nine seasons. In an effort to prolong his big league career, Brignac is now attempting to become a switch-hitter, MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports.
I’m going to try it out this year. It was something that I just thought long and hard about and I was like, ‘OK, I’m going to try and see how it goes.’ I used to switch-hit when I was younger off and on, nothing consistent. I could always handle the bat right-handed. I play golf right-handed, so I do a lot of things that way that feel natural.
I just want to get to the point where I’m trying to stay in games, not get pinch-hit for, not starting games because a lefty is starting. … That could help me stay in the games longer. I’m trying to add a new element. I play multiple positions and now if I can switch hit and be consistent at it, then that can only help me.
As Brignac mentions, he’s also verstile. He’s a shortstop by trade, but has also logged plenty of innings at second base and third base, and has occasionally played corner outfield.
There aren’t any examples — at least that I can think of — where players began switch-hitting late in their careers and actually succeeding in the major leagues. As the saying goes, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. But here’s hoping Brignac bucks the trend.
Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons fell off the map a bit last year due to a combination of the Angels’ mediocrity, Simmons’ lack of offense, and a month-plus of missed action due to a torn ligament in his left thumb.
Simmons is still as good and as smart as ever on defense. That was on full display Monday when the Angels hosted the Padres for an afternoon spring exhibition.
With a runner on first base and nobody out in the top of the second inning, Carlos Asuaje grounded a 2-0 J.C. Ramirez fastball to right field. The runner, Hunter Renfroe, advanced to third base. Meanwhile, Asuaje wandered a little too far off the first base bag. Simmons cut off the throw to first base, spun around and fired to Luis Valbuena at first base. Valbuena swiped the tag on Asuaje for the first out of the inning.