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The Mets could make a play for Nick Franklin

Feb 24, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT

Nick Franklin Getty Getty Images

Adam Rubin of ESPN New York reported last week that the Mariners were likely to trade either Nick Franklin or Brad Miller by Opening Day and speculated that the Mets could make a play for one of them. Well, he was told by a “Mets insider” today that the team does indeed see a possible match with Franklin.

According to Rubin, the Mets had talks with the Mariners as far back as December’s Winter Meetings. With Seattle reportedly shopping Franklin and on the lookout for young pitching, the expectation is that negotiations will pick up again over the next month. Rubin mentioned a possible Rafael Montero-for-Franklin swap, but that’s merely speculation and there’s no indication that the two sides are actually discussing such a trade. Still, the Mets have plenty of young pitching on the way, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see them use some of that depth in order to acquire a bat.

There are doubts about whether Franklin has the defensive ability to be a full-time shortstop in the majors, so a deal is no sure thing. As of now, the Mets are planning on going with Ruben Tejada as their starting shortstop, though signing free agent Stephen Drew remains a possibility.

Franklin, who turns 23 in March, hit .225/.303/.382 with 12 home runs, 45 RBI, and six stolen bases over 102 games in his first taste of the majors last year. He made 90 starts at second base and two at shortstop.

  1. spudchukar - Feb 24, 2014 at 9:25 PM

    Cards outta offer up Lyons for Franklin and see if they bite.

    • paperlions - Feb 25, 2014 at 7:30 AM

      Why? Franklin can’t play SS, they are more likely to need Lyons than Franklin. Wong is younger, with better 2B defense, more speed, and he’s been more consistent hitting through the minors. I’m not saying Franklin sucks, but the Cardinals already have a guy that has a better track record than him to play 2B…and Ellis as insurance for this year.

      • spudchukar - Feb 25, 2014 at 10:27 AM

        Franklin can play SS. Wong is barely younger, he isn’t as good of a second baseman, and doesn’t possess Franklin’s speed. Plus Franklin has more pop. Other than that your comment is right on.

        As good as Descalso is, Franklin is a more a attractive utility guy, and the Cards have other pitchers that can fill Lyons’ void.

      • spudchukar - Feb 25, 2014 at 11:07 AM

        Incidentally, Franklin is the younger of the two. He won’t be 23 until next week.

      • paperlions - Feb 25, 2014 at 11:31 AM

        Good luck finding anyone that thinks Franklin can play SS. Every scout that I have seen asked says there that he can’t do it.

        For some reason I was thinking Wong would be 22 this season.

        If Franklin has speed, it sure doesn’t show up….and last year he sucked playing 2B, maybe the position was new to him, but a guy that sucks at playing SS and that was below average in his first go at 2B isn’t exactly inspiring defensive confidence.

        Franklin may have major contact issues. It appears that he can hit with some pop and K more than 25% of the time or he can use a contact hitter approach and K much less.

        If the Cardinals were offered Franklin straight up for Wong, I have no doubt they would turn it down.

      • spudchukar - Feb 25, 2014 at 2:39 PM

        He doesn’t “suck” at playing shortstop. There is a question as to whether he can be a full-time MLB shortstop, but their is no question regarding Wong, he doesn’t have the skill set, which ought to enlighten you regarding the defensive comparison with Wong. Wong is slightly above average, Franklin is a step or two quicker.

        Both have stolen over 20 bases in the minors, with Franklin topping Wong by a few, but Wong does not have Franklin’s first to third speed, but his high Baseball IQ, should still make him a good base runner. However, watching Wong getting jumps in 2013 wasn’t very impressive, he needs to work on first step acceleration.

        Wong is more of a gap guy and while Franklin has HR power. As to whether the Cards would trade Wong for Franklin, who knows, both have great potential, although Franklin consistently was ranked higher by those who judge prospects.

  2. tuberippin - Feb 25, 2014 at 2:32 AM

    “Mets could, should, probably won’t make a play for Nick Franklin”

  3. paperlions - Feb 25, 2014 at 7:31 AM

    Franklin has probably been shopped since the Cano deal. That he hasn’t been trades is probably more of a result of the Mariner’s asking price than the interest of other teams….if they are trying to say he’s a SS and valuing him as such, they’ll have a hard time trading him. Even before he came up, no scout thought he would stay at SS.

    • spudchukar - Feb 25, 2014 at 11:09 AM

      McClendon says he and Miller are both competing for SS. My guess is he is about as good at SS as Peralta.

  4. source7769 - Feb 25, 2014 at 11:49 AM

    franklin for montero is highway robbery

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