As everyone is already well aware, Moises is out for 4-6 weeks with a hernia. Since nobody reading here missed last season, it's safe to say that we can assume that means more like 6-8 weeks. Why is this inevitable injury such a big deal? I'm glad you asked, fellow sports fans.
It's a big deal because it exposes the ridiculously laughable lack of productive corner outfielders in the organization. Fiery comments about the Lastings trade aside, it's a touch comforting to know that even without the Lastings trade we'd be stuck in the same predicament -- except Da Edge would be in RF instead of the man who currently vomits everytime he sees daylight.
Omar held a press conference today to address the "Alou situation" and claimed that there was a good chance the team would fill the hole "with someone internal right now." I'd imagine so since there's nobody left to trade besides F-Mart and Niese and I'd imagine they're both untouchable right now -- but assuming Omar does stand pat, let's take a look at what will be coming out of the LF spot for the first month and a half to two months of the season. Drumroll...
Angel Pagan: Impressive so far this spring, but underwhelming for his career. His 2008 PECOTA looks like this: .249/.313/.389. Not terrible, but not what you want from a corner outfielder. He's good defensively though!
Endy Chavez: Oh, that's right. He's injured too! We know he's great with the glove - but we also know that when he plays every day he's just not a servicable option in a corner OF spot. 2008 PECOTA: .282/.334/.362
Damion Easley: Oops! Another one bites the dust. Plus the fact that he's an infielder.
Marlon Anderson: Another IF whose holes become glaring if he plays everyday. His PECOTA looks better than Pagan's though - but perhaps not enough to offset the defensive dropoff: .264/.346/.430
Now let's take a trip down trade-some-more-prospects-for-a-quick-fix lane and examine some options that are universally regarded as "available" should Omar decide to make a deal:
Xavier Nady: Perfect fit and would love to see it - but who are we trading to get him? 2008 PECOTA: .280/.340/.470
Matt Murton: Meh. In the words of BP: "Let's be honest, Matt Murton is a good, well rounded hitter, but it looks as though he's going to peak as about a .275-EqA bat, and you can subtract a few points from that for his propensity to make boneheaded plays in the OF" PECOTA puts him around the same offensive output as Nady: .295/.359/.462
Scott Hairston: Yeah. That'll work. .258/.332/.469 - Maybe if he could replicate his .644 SLG from last season's stint with the Padres, but I doubt it considering that number was preceded by a .222/.301/.358 performance in Arizona over the first half of the season. He has had a SLG above .600 in AAA but he strikes out a ton and doesn't walk nearly enough. The verdict? Let him stay in SD and forever curse Trevor Hoffman's name.
Nelson Cruz: Find a non-die hard who even knows who he is and I'll mail you a dollar. PECOTA's got him at .256/.323/.453 for 2008. Not terrible, but not worth giving up anything to get in return.
So that's it. That is your depressing tour of what one of the "power" positions will likely look like for April and most of May 2008. Ladies and gentlemen, your 2008 New York Mets!