The New York Mets add Matt Adams in minor league deal

Simeon Woods-Richardson

The New York Mets signed first baseman Matt Adams, formerly on the Washington Nationals, to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

The slugging infielder didn’t have the best of years in 2019. He batted just .226/.276/.465 but did belt 20 home runs over 333 plate appearances for the World Champions last season.

Adams, who is 31 years old, will serve as depth for the Mets at first base. He will also provide a strong pinch hitter and a power bat off the bench against right-handed pitchers.

The Mets now have a logjam

Adams’ signing would make somewhat of a logjam at first base for the New York Mets. The unquestioned starter is Pete Alonso, the reigning Rookie of the Year and MLB home run champion. The team also has Dominic Smith at the position, although he has played in the outfield the last two seasons in an effort to increase his versatility.

While he offers virtually no defensive value, it’s clear that having Adams’ bat around won’t hurt the Mets. His career line is .261/.309/.469 with a .331 wOBA and a 107 wRC+. He has been, throughout his career, an above-average offensive performer.

He also accumulates 116 career home runs, 11 of which have come in pinch-hit situations. In that scenario, he also has 49 runs batted in, leading active major leaguers in both categories. Adams is the type of batter that can come from the bench in the late innings and face a tough righty.

By now, we know Adams’ strengths and weaknesses. There will be no surprises: he can mash righties (career .273/.325/.491 with an .816 OPS and a 117 wRC+) but he can’t touch lefties (.208/.236/.371, .608 OPS and a 59 wRC+.)

First, it remains to be seen if Adams makes the Mets’ roster, although the extra roster spot will help. But all in all, it is a nice low-risk flier for the team.