Mets fans: it’s time to get Kiki with Hernandez

Well it looks like George Springer will sign with the Toronto Blue Jays. With a contract worth $150, the New York Mets were smart to pass.

Now we can turn our attention to other players the Mets could add.

One name that we’ve been seeing around the Mets Facebook groups was Kiki Hernandez.

Hernandez has spent most of his career playing on the west coast, mostly for the Dodgers in LA, and never really full time.

So I really didn’t know much about him. After seeing his name so much, I headed over to baseball-reference to do my homework.

And, for what the Mets need, I think Kiki Hernandez would be a great fit.

Let’s get Kiki, Mets fans.

We said Hernandez would be a good fit. The one thing I knew from seeing him play the Mets; Kiki is fit. He looks like a gym rat, with a lean and athletic frame. Looking at his page on Baseball Reference, we saw that Hernandez was drafted out of the US Military Academy in Puerto Rico.

I don’t know anything about the US military academy in Puerto Rico. But it seems like it would take the same amount of discipline to stay as fit as Kiki is, as I would to graduate college from any military academy.

I like players with that kind of work ethic.

Looking more at his numbers, the first thing I always go to is OPS. The Mets need and upgrade on defense in centerfield, yes, and I’ll get to Kiki’s D later, but OPS wins games.

The Mets need to get Kiki for his bat against lefties. His .820 career ops verse lefty pitching is impressive, especially considering his role on the Mets, and for centerfielders overall.

Kiki with the D
Defensively, Kiki Hernandez has played all over the field. While he can play shortstop and third base in a pinch, Kiki’s best D positions are second base and left field, much like Jeff McNeil.

He’s actually above average at both positions. He also looks pretty solid defensively in right field as well.

Again, I haven’t seen him play much, and I never really noticed his defense. Just looking at his numbers though, Kiki Hernandez seems to have a good glove. His arm might not be the strongest. The way defensive metrics are measured, he can be penalized a bit unfairly at different positions if his arm isn’t the strongest. And I don’t care at all how strong my centerfielder’s arm is.

On defense, Kiki Hernandez looks like he can catch the ball where ever he plays. I’m sure the Mets pitching staff would appreciate that.

In centerfield, his defensive numbers are average to a bit better than average. His defensive runs saved in centerfield have swung between -6 and +6. Again, his arm could be a factor in those numbers. Catching the ball- something that has eluded Brendon Nimmo over the years- doesn’t seem to be a problem for Hernandez.

In all, Kiki Hernandez seems like a great fit for the New York Mets. He’s a right handed bat, that has reasonable success against lefties -while being at least average verses right hand pitching. He also plays above average defensive, and is athletic enough to do so all over the diamond.

Signing Hernandez could give the Mets a lot of versatility, too. And teams in today’s mlb love versatility.