Tag: Matt Joyce

MLB Trade Rumors: Will Ike Davis Be with the New York Mets in 2014?

New York Mets first baseman Ike Davis has been the topic of various MLB trade rumors this offseason. The Mets must decide whether they want either him, Lucas Duda or someone else to be their starter at first base in 2014.

Coming off a season in which he hit 30 home runs, Davis has been drawing more trade interest than Duda.

Neither has shown enough to think that either should stick around in New York for 2014. I’d rather have a fresh face from outside the organization be the team’s first baseman next season. The probability of that happening, however, will likely depend on how the trade market develops later this winter.

After enduring a slow start in 2012, Davis rebounded in the second half, slugging 32 home runs with 90 RBI despite a .227 batting average. Manager Terry Collins expected on Davis to be the main source of power and protection in the Mets lineup behind David Wright in 2013.

Unfortunately for the Mets, that didn’t happen.

Davis finished the season with a .205/.326/.334 stat line to go with nine home runs and 33 RBI, as he spent nearly a month in Triple-A. New York may allow the market to decide whether it will hold onto Davis for another year, or hand over most of the playing time at first base to Duda.

At this point of the offseason, teams in need of a cheap power option at first base prefer Davis. Unlike Duda, he has shown the ability to be a productive source of power with his home run total from 2012. The Tampa Bay Rays and Milwaukee Brewers have most notably been linked to Davis and the Mets following the GM meetings last week.

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times touched upon why the Rays would be interested in Davis:

But the Rays, who drafted but didn’t sign Davis in 2005, would have to be intrigued by the potential lefty power, plus getting three years of control and a somewhat reasonable cost — an arbitration projected $3.5 million salary. That’s about the same as Matt Joyce is to make, and the Mets seek a corner outfielder, though the Rays need lefty power.

Matt Joyce would be an interesting acquisition for the Mets. In 140 games during 2013, the corner outfielder hit .235/.328/.419 with 18 home runs and 47 RBI. He would provide some extra power in the Mets outfield, but would likely not be used more than as a fourth outfielder or utility man if this trade were to come about.

The Brewers are a more intriguing trade partner, especially if they make Norichika Aoki available. According to Adam McCalvy of MLB.com, Milwaukee GM Doug Melvin recently acknowledged that his team would be a good fit for a potential swap with the Mets.

Aoki is due to become a free agent following the 2014 season, but would provide the Mets with a true leadoff hitter. The 31-year-old hit .286/.356/.370 last season, including eight home runs, 37 RBI, 80 runs scored and 20 stolen bases. He’s due to earn $1.95 million next season.

Adam Rubin of ESPN New York noted that the Houston Astros, Baltimore Orioles and Colorado Rockies have all expressed interest in Davis. It’s all but certain that he won’t be suiting up for the Mets next season. Alderson will likely hold onto his first baseman until later in the winter, when the market isn’t full of players with power potential.

Unless Alderson can pull off a miracle and pry Troy Tulowitzki or Carlos Gonzalez from Colorado, the Brewers seem to be the best fit for either side in a trade. Milwaukee would receive a relatively cheap option to fill its void at first base while Davis would bring a solid glove and great power potential that would become even more notable due to playing half his home games at Miller Park.

On the flip side, the Mets would get a true leadoff hitter with a knack for getting on base. In 1,117 career at-bats, Aoki has struck out 95 times while drawing 98 walks and boasts a .355 on-base percentage. Striking this kind of deal would save New York some money and allow the Mets spending more on a power hitting outfielder or shortstop elsewhere.

If the Mets front office is tired of giving Davis a chance to blossom into a consistent major league hitter, it needs to acquire a player who Collins can write into his lineup every day. If the Mets wait long enough, there will be a team desperate enough to give up something that it would prefer to hold on to in a potential exchange.


Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Matt Joyce Broke Tampa Bay Rays Teammate’s Bat After Hitting Home Run with It

Elliot Johnson should think twice before letting Matt Joyce borrow his stuff.

During the first inning of what turned out to be a 12-6 slaughter of the Minnesota Twins, Joyce stepped to the plate and hit a nice two-run home run. The hit scored the first two runs of the game and served as the warning shot of the ambush to come.

The homer was also hit with Elliot Johnson’s bat.

If you look closely at the picture above, you will see that Joyce was using a bat with the No. 9 on the knob of the bat, not his jersey No. 20.

Having nothing else planned on a Friday night I began to research into the origin and proper owner of the bat. Unfortunately, the number on the knob doesn’t come with an underline like my favorite card game to differentiate the nines from sixes. However, with the jersey number six belonging to Rays third base coach Tom Foley, it was safe to assume the bat didn’t belong to him.

That left the only option as No. 9 himself, Mr. Elliot Johnson. After posing the question on my Twitter, because I clearly wasn’t sleeping without confirmation, Johnson responded and confirmed via Twitter that the bat was indeed his.

Johnson also added that Joyce broke the bat, but it’s cool since a homer was hit with it.

We’ve all been there in principal. You let someone borrow a tool, appliance or other object and they don’t return it in the condition they received it. The difference is my neighbor isn’t hitting a two-run homer with my hammer or lawn mower.


Jamal Wilburg is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report.

Like him on Facebook, follow him on Twitter @JWilburg or visit his website www.jamalwilburg.com.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Fantasy Baseball 2011: 5 Players to Sell High on ASAP

Stock traders know all about the buy low, sell high philosophy.  So do fantasy baseball owners.   

To win in fantasy baseball, you have to get guys on the cheap who turn out to provide a lot of bang for little buck over a short period of time, and then you have to trade those same players away when their values are at their highest points in order to acquire better players who will help you win your league.

Two-plus months into the season there are several hitters and pitchers who are exceeding expectations, and chances are they are not going to keep up their frenetic paces, whether it is because they will get injured, lose their jobs, or come crashing back to earth. 

Here are five players I would trade now before their fantasy values start dropping like afternoon soap operas.  Deal them away for solid fantasy performers before they realize they are playing over their heads, or else wind up stuck with them at the All-Star break when their trade values dry up.  

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11 MLB Players Who Have the Most to Lose During Spring Training

One of the biggest parts of MLB Spring Training is determining who will be the starters. As usual, there are a lot of tough position battles this year.

A lot of high-profile moves were made this offseason. There’s a lot of anticipation to see who will win those battles.

Here are the top 11 players who have the most to lose in their position battles this year.

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Tampa Bay Rays Need To Start Using Their Heads If They Want To Win

The Tampa Bay Rays are one of baseball’s most talented teams. They have it all. They have very good defense, very good pitching, pretty good power, and above-average speed. They could very well go all the way. Except for one thing: They sometimes are not very smart.

I watch the Rays three to four times a week. I cannot count how many times I have said during a game, “What was the point of that?” Sometimes it’s Joe Maddon giving a key player the day off while playing the Red Sox or Yankees, with an off day or the Orioles coming up. Really Joe? You couldn’t wait one more day to sit Carl Crawford? Or Carlos Pena?

Sometimes it’s strategy. Like having success with the squeeze bunt in certain situations, and then not using it when that same situation comes up again a week later. Or being 114 games into the season but still not settling on a leadoff hitter or a DH.

But most irritating of all are just the boneheaded plays that seem to go unnoticed. At least the announcers don’t seem to notice. In Wednesday’s game against Detroit, a game that the Rays lost by one run that would have put them back in first place had they won, there were several.

No. 9 hitter Kelly Shoppach drew a walk to load the bases with two outs. Leadoff man Dan Johnson had a 2-0 count, then swung at a high fastball and popped it up. Why swing at that? He’s thrown six straight balls. Take a strike. Unless it’s served up on a tee, let that one go.

Then there was a situation with runners on first and second with one out. The Rays had just tied the game and were finally starting to hit Justin Verlander. Jason Bartlett hit a line drive to right that looked like a sure hit. But the right fielder made a great diving catch. Matt Joyce had already rounded third, so he was easily doubled off. There was only one out. Make sure the ball is going to drop before you take off. This is high school stuff.

But THE most galling play of the day came in the ninth. B.J Upton led off with a walk with the Rays down, 3-1. The tying run came to the plate. And this genius steals. What? Why? Your run is MEANINGLESS! If it’s the eighth inning, that’s a good play. In the ninth, it’s stupid. You should be standing on first base. It’s not worth the risk of getting thrown out and losing a precious out and not having the tying run up.

Oh sure, he would say “I’m trying to stay out of the double play.” Then break it up when that situation comes up. That’s not worth the risk. How would he feel if he got thrown out and then the next pitch got blasted into the upper deck?

Later in the inning, he scored on a groundout. He went into the dugout and everybody is giving him a high-five. Really? You congratulate him for being stupid? A play that dumb should get him chewed out just like loafing after a ball did. He should be fined for that, not congratulated.

Someday, one of your players is going to do something like that it in a postseason game. And it will cost you a game and maybe a title. And the poor guy who does it will be this century’s Fred Merkle. Unless Maddon starts doing something about it now, this will happen. It’s baseball karma. You keep tempting it, it has a way of getting you in the end.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Fantasy Baseball Free Agent Pool – 2010 RBI Guys Vol. 7


Are you hurting in the RBI category? Here are some reasonably available players that can help you out.


Matt Joyce, OF, Tampa Bay Rays
Joyce had 14 RBIs over the past 15 days while hitting .286 with 8 runs and 4 HR. On the year he’s hitting .244 with 13 runs, 5 HR, and 20 RBI in 31 games. Matt is owned in three percent of ESPN and 11 percent of CBS leagues.


Chris Johnson, 3B, Houston Astros
Johnson had 13 RBI over the past 15 days while hitting .449 with nine runs, 4 HR, and one SB. On the year he’s hitting .343 with 17 runs, 4 HR, 23 RBI, and two SB in 40 games. Chris is owned in 25 percent of ESPN and 44 percent of CBS leagues.


Neil Walker, 2B/3B, Pittsburgh Pirates
Walker had 10 RBI over the past 15 days while hitting .345 with 5 runs and 2 HR. On the year he’s hitting .300 with 27 runs, 5 HR, 26 RBI, and two SB in 53 games. Neil is owned in 26 percent of ESPN and 52 percent of CBS leagues.


Ian Desmond, SS, Washington Nationals
Desmond had nine RBIs over the past 15 days while hitting .295 with 7 runs, one HR, and one SB. On the year he’s hitting .260 with 38 runs, seven HR, 45 RBI, and nine SB. Ian is owned in eight percent of ESPN and 32 percent of CBS leagues.


Carlos Ruiz, C, Philadelphia Phillies
Ruiz had seven RBI over the past 15 days while hitting .310 with four runs and a HR. On the year he’s hitting .282 with 22 runs, three HR, and 20 RBI. Carlos is owned in three percent of ESPN and 29 percent of CBS leagues.

Also check out:
– Fantasy Baseball Box Score Breakouts 8/2/10
Fantasy Baseball Streaming Pitcher Option for 8/3/10


Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

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