January 15, 2007

Assessing A-Hern

Marty Noble at Mets.com, writes about Anderson Hernandez and his future for 2007:

Damion Easley is on the roster to back up at second base and, in a pinch, at shortstop. With Endy Chavez available to serve as the understudy for Moises Alou in left field, chances are Jose Valentin will see most of his playing time at second base. Those circumstances reduce the Mets' need for Hernandez.

If Jose Reyes were unable to play for 10 days, the Mets might consider using Hernandez at shortstop. But an extended absence of Reyes probably would prompt the club to look elsewhere for a replacement shortstop, one more likely to provide more offense than Hernandez.

Hernandez's offensive limitations make him less than ideal, even as a reserve. Given his defensive brilliance, if he were to hit big-league pitching as he hits in winter ball, he'd probably have the second base assignment by now.

As it is, he probably will begin the season as the Triple-A shortstop.

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