NEW YORK, NY – Pete Alonso refuses to cool down, and like his bat, the argument to have him start the year in the majors is now scorching hot.
The Mets have often been ridiculed for not having a competitive farm system with a number of prospects able to help the team in the years to come. This past offseason the team inflicted even more damage to its farm by agreeing to trade for Robinsin Cano and Edwin Diaz, parting with promising prospect RHP Justin Dunn and their most recent 1st round draft pick OF Jarred Kelenic. Kelenic specifically was turning heads and drawing immense optimism from many scouts and executives throughout the game.
Now without these two players, and former top prospect Amed Rosario cemented in the starting shortstop role with the Mets, Pete Alonso takes center stage as the next star up. It’s not an exaggeration to say that he has more than done his part to show that he is absolutely ready to make the jump. In 2018, he spent time in AA Binghamton and AAA Las Vegas batting .285, driving in 119 runs and clubbing 36 home runs. This spring he has continued to show his impressive hitting ability and a defensive progression at first base.
“I feel like I have done a really good job of playing complete baseball,” Alonso said Sunday in Port St. Lucie. “I have played well defensively and done some really awesome things offensively and I feel like I have run the bases well and done a good job of doing the little things right.”
Pete Alonso is absolutely right, and you will have a lot of trouble finding someone with a different opinion of his play. It seems though that the only issue Alonso is dealing with these days are the service time rules MLB has in place. There’s no question Alonso has earned a spot on this team and should be considered for the starting job at first base, but the chance to hold on to this potential stud for an extra year of arbitration is too good to pass up.
The New York Mets have continued to preach that the best 25 players will be on the way up to NYC when the season begins, and if that is true than Pete Alonso can expect to be on that flight. But sacrificing a few weeks at AAA in order to have Alonso for an extra year makes too much sense. The Mets may very well stay true to their word and call up Alonso at the start of the year, but MLB may have made the decision for them by allowing teams to manipulate service time.