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How Gerardo Parra may be a fit for the Mets

photo taken from Zimbio via Google Images

It has been reported that the Washington Nationals are among the teams interested in Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Gerardo Parra. Parra won a NL Gold Glove last year in the OF but may be without a spot in the lineup due to the signing of free agent OF Jason Kubel. In an ideal world, the Diamondbacks would like to use Parra as a 4th OF behind Kubel, Chris Young and Justin Upton. It may become difficult though, since Parra seems to be coming in to his own at age 25. Through my blog (John Pielli’s Passed Ball Show) as well as many others, it has been discussed how extra parts are moved around during spring training as teams trade something they have excess of in exchange for something they need. This is why I think Parra will be moved before opening day.
Parra has always been a pure hitter, even through his time in the minors. He may strike out a little more than you want, but he has a sweet stroke at the plate. He is purely a gap hitter, but has a little bit of power. He has good speed but is learning to use it better on the bases. He could become a 30 SB player though it’s something that has to be applied more. He had a breakout season in 2009 where he hit .290 in 120 games with 21 2B, eight 3B, five HR and 60 RBI. His numbers dropped a little bit in 2010, where he hit .261 in 133 games with 19 2B, six 3B, three HR and just 30 RBI. He became more of a core player in 2011 where he hit .292 in 141 games with 20 2B, eight 3B, eight HR and 46 RBI.
Watching Parra play in 2009, he shows the potential to be a very useful player. He is best as a LF, but has played all outfield positions. He had 12 OF assists last year and made his share of highlight plays. It’s no surprise that plenty of teams are inquiring about him and more of a reason that he probably will be playing for somebody other than Arizona in 2012.
The simple question is, could he be a fit for the New York Mets? I personally think he is the type of player the Mets should be interested in. He could start the year as a 4th OF and perhaps work his way into the starting lineup as the team’s CF. Maybe Parra would prefer to be traded to a team where he could start and play every day. As much as Andres Torres deserves a chance to be a regular, at this point, he will more than likely be better suited as a 4th OF on this team. Parra’s age (25) makes him more of a fit as he could be a consideration to be a corner OF in the future of this organization. The team will also benefit from his defense.
What would the Mets have to give up in such a trade? The Diamondbacks are not going to give him away and we have to factor in that other teams are interested, assuming the Mets are. The point of course is mute if the team has no interest. The Diamondbacks could use Daniel Murphy at both 1B and 3B, but the Mets have committed to him as their 2B. The Mets top and mid level pitching prospects are probably all off limits. Getting Parra back in the deal may give the Mets some flexibility when it comes to their OF prospects. For the exception of Brandon Nimmo and maybe Matt Den Dekker, they have very few OFs that project to be MLB starters at this point. Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Juan Lagares and Javier Rodriguez could interest Arizona and if another minor league player is added, this is a deal that could be made.  Factor in that Parra is pre-arbitration eligible; it’s a move that works for the Mets financially.

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