Michael Cuddyer has remained on the Mets’ active roster despite starting just two games in the past two weeks due to a knee injury. During that time (and even before that) lots of Mets fans were clamoring for the team to call up 22-year-old outfield prospect Michael Conforto for the his MLB debut.
Today the Mets finally shut down Cuddyer, placing him on the disabled list and promoting Conforto from Double-A to the majors.
For most players it makes little sense to play through an injury and in Cuddyer’s case he’s hit just .250 with a .683 OPS in 82 games this season. This offseason the Mets forfeited a first-round draft pick for the right to sign the 36-year-old Cuddyer to a two-year, $21 million deal, which is a move that received lots of criticism at the time and now looks like a huge mistake.
As for Conforto, he was the 10th overall pick in last year’s draft out of Oregon State and made quick work of the minors by hitting .308 in 133 games. He began this season at high Single-A and moved up to Double-A in late May, batting .297 with 12 homers, 24 doubles, and an .854 OPS overall. Baseball America ranked Conforto among MLB’s top 20 prospects in their midseason update, but with just 45 games above Single-A his readiness for the majors is unclear.
Matt Spiegel of 670 The Score Chicago heard from a source that Major League Baseball executives have been discussing a 100-game season that would begin on July 1 and conclude on October 15. It would essentially pick up the second half schedule, eliminating the All-Star Game while hosting the World Series at a neutral warm-weather stadium — ideally Dodger Stadium.
In the event the Dodgers, who won 106 games last year, made it all the way through the playoffs, the World Series would be hosted in Anaheim or San Diego. The earlier rounds of the playoffs would be played in the cities of the teams involved, which might be tough since the postseason would extend into November.
Spiegel went on to describe this vision as “an absolute best case scenario,” and that’s accurate. In order for the regular season to begin on July 1, the players would need to have several weeks if not a full month prior to get back into playing shape — more or less an abbreviated second spring training. And that would mean the U.S. having made significant progress against the virus by way of herd immunity or a vaccine, which would allow for nonessential businesses to resume operations. The U.S., sadly, is faring not so well compared to other nations around the world for a variety of reasons, but all of which point to a return to normalcy by the summer seeming rather unlikely.
Regardless, the league does have to plan for the potential of being able to start the regular season this summer just in case things really do break right and offer that opportunity. Commissioner Rob Manfred has stated multiple times about the league’s need to be creative, referring to ideas like playing deep into the fall, changing up the location of games, playing without fans in attendance, etc. This rumor certainly fits the “creative” mold.