Who is right for Mets in outfield?
With the dawn of spring training in Port St. Lucie, the Mets find themselves with more questions than answers regarding their outfield.
Lucas Duda, the only outfielder whose job looks to be safe, will be the starter in left field. After that, the outlook gets more complicated. Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Collin Cowgill are expected to platoon in center field. In right, the Mets are looking for a solution involving some combination of Marlon Byrd, Mike Baxter and Andrew Brown.
Here's a look at the likely candidates for right field.
Byrd joined the Mets this winter as a low-risk reclamation project. He last played in the majors in June 2012, when he was sent down to the minors by the Red Sox. He then tested positive for a banned substance and was suspended 50 games. Manager Terry Collins endorsed the career .278 hitter, going so far as to suggest that he could be the everyday right fielder if he performs well this spring.
Queens native Baxter saw 179 at-bats in 89 games last season for his hometown team, but his best chance of making the big-league roster is in a platoon situation. The career .253 hitter will have to prove he is worth keeping on a roster that already figures to have two other left-handed hitting outfielders.
The 28-year-old played in 57 games for the Cardinals and Rockies over the last two seasons. He hit .232 with five home runs and 11 RBIs in 112 at-bats for the Rockies in 2012. In the minors, Brown has spent time at first base, third base, left field and right field.