The non-tender deadline is this Wednesday and many teams have decisions to make. One candidate who could be non-tendered is New York Mets infielder Ruben Tejada. We all remember Tejada from the 2015 National League Division Series when Chase Utley slid hard into second and broke Tejada’s leg. Tejada missed the remainder of the postseason due to the injury. He has been injured before with the Mets and they are starting to question his ability to stay on the field.
Tejada, 26, has been very effective for the Mets in the field but has been inconsistent at the plate. Being able to play multiple positions within the infield is a main reason to why the Mets value him. He has been with the Mets since 2010 with a career batting average of .255. Tejada has battled injuries multiple times throughout his career. He played 114 games in 2012, 57 games in 2013, 119 games in 2014 and 116 games in 2015.
There is still uncertainty whether Daniel Murphy will return to the team, which would leave an opening at second base. The Mets have been linked to Ben Zobrist, but a reluctance to give Zobrist a fourth year might hurt their chances of acquiring him according to ESPN. Wilmer Flores replaced Tejada as the shortstop during the postseason and it is a very realistic possibility that he is the starting shortstop on Opening Day. They also have prospect Dilson Herrera. The Mets have stated that he can be an everyday infielder for the team if Murphy does depart. The Wilpons do have a reputation for not spending money and that could be the case again this winter.
Flores has proven that he can be an everyday shortstop. He was the starter on a Mets team that advanced to the World Series. Herrera has received a vote of confidence from the organization that he is someone who can make an impact in 2016.
Tejada is coming off a broken fibula but should be ready for the start of the season. Teams will be interested in Tejada if he does become a free agent since the market for shortstops is minimal. Tejada has been a member of the Mets his entire career, but now it’s time for both parties to move on.