Coming into this season, the Mets third base situation was the most concerning of all. With an off-season full of rumors about the Mets interest in adding a third baseman, they ended up with adding Villar in the mix.
During Spring the Mets also tried Jeff McNeil at third, with the possibility of having Guillorme play second. Unfortunately McNeil couldn’t correct flaws from his 2020 campaign, as the Mets gave McNeil the second base spot, were he looks more comfortable.
So, the Mets kept a combination of J.D. Davis, Luis Guillorme and Jonathan Villar, to be the Mets third base solution. So far they all have hit very well, but their defense has been a major concern. Even slick fielding Luis Guillorme has shown issues at third.
Let’s start with the talk of the moment: J.D. Davis. Davis committed three errors in the 2 games so far at Wrigley Field. In Tuesdays 3-1 loss, Davis committed two throwing errors and yesterday he booted a ground ball (which could have been a double play), for an extremely costly error as a 7 run inning followed.
This season Davis has had limited time and he already collected a minus 2 OAA. His succes rate on plays were at 69% while his estimated success rate is 84%. Showing he just doesn’t make the plays he should make.
Davis has the issue for his whole career. Over his career he has a combined minus 10 OAA at third base, which shows his lack of skills in the field.
So what is the solution? Is it Luis Guillorme the slick fielding player of the three. Unfortunately Guillorme hasn’t been what we expect from him at third as well.
Guillorme has collected a minus 2 OAA as well in limited time. This shows he is off to a horrendous start as well with the glove.
Yes Guillorme get the more difficult plays, so it seems like Davis his struggles are more major but Guillorme has a succes rate of just 43% with a 63% estimated success rate. That’s 20% lower, which is even worse than Davis at this point.
For the record, this isn’t me saying Davis is a better defender than Guillorme, because that’s obviously isn’t true. However, how great Guillorme is at the middle infield spots, he hasn’t been great at third. Over his career in the majors he has collected a minus 4 OAA at the position.
Guillorme is a great second baseman and in a perfect world, McNeil would be the third baseman and Guillorme the second baseman. I can’t fault Guillorme because it’s a position he isn’t accustomed too. However at this point 3B is the position he is asked to play.
We have one more on the 26 man roster who can play third and that’s Jonathan Villar. Villar has been the best of the three on defense so far, but he is clearly more of a bench player for this team.
Villar has collected a 82% succes rate at third with a 79% estimated success rate. The only of the three who collected more success rate than was estimated. Villar has an even 0 OAA, but again obviously a small samplesize. Before this season, the last time Villar played third was 2016, when he was atrocious at the position (-10 OAA).
Al of the three are hitting well so far. That makes the decision who to play even more tricky. In my opinion Villar is and should be a bench player. So it’s should be between Davis and Guillorme.
I have way more faith in Guillorme being able to handle the position but Davis does have the stronger and more powerful bat. In a perfect world we have the DH, but that is not the case right now.
Although Guillorme third base defense hasn’t been good in his MLB Career, he does have the skills to right his wrongs. He should be able to play the position at least average and if he is hitting like he is, he should get more playing time. JD should get playing time with the strikeout/flyball pitchers and Luis should het playing time with our Ground ball pitchers. And mix Villar in their occasionally is what I should do.
What would your solution to the third base issues be?