The New York Mets are likely losing both Yoenis Cespedes and Daniel Murphy in free agency this offseason, but the team could still be active in trying to sign other players. The Mets have a number of needs after making it to the World Series and players like Denard Span, Gerardo Parra, Dexter Fowler, Ian Desmond and Ben Zobrist could be options.
The Mets may take a look at options in center field heading into the offseason with Juan Lagares having an inconsistent season, according to Marc Carig of Newsday. The report says that players like Span, Parra and Fowler could be options on the free agent market, as they are fairly affordable players compared to someone like Cespedes, who likely will sign a major contract.
The team reportedly could look at Denard Span, Gerardo Parra or Dexter Fowler as targets to play in the outfield. Shortstop has also been mentioned as a potential area of need that the team will target and both Ben Zobrist and Ian Desmond could be targets. Zobrist also could be a fit to take over for Murphy if the Mets let him go, as he can play second base as well.
Span dealt with injuries last season, but he has speed and could be a good table setter option for the Mets and he is 31 years old coming into the offseason. Parra is a few years younger and he has the versatility to play all three outfield positions. Fowler spent time as the leadoff man for the Cubs and his .250 last season and showed some pop and speed with 17 home runs and 20 stolen bases. Zobrist is a versatile player and he could be an option if the Mets want to spend a bit, as he can play both second base and shortstop as well as the outfield if needed.
The Mets may at least talk to Murphy about re-signing, but right now it is not looking likely. There are other teams interested, as Fox Sports reports that the Rockies have had "internal discussions" about signing Murphy to play at first base. The team is not bringing back Justin Morneau after declining his option and Murphy could be a fit to take over. Murphy will be 31 next season and he has put up a .288 batting average.
According to CBS Sports, Murphy is likely going to make between $50-60 million on his next contract. Murphy played second base primarily for the Mets and he has some experience at the first base position, playing nearly 200 games there in his career. Murphy had a career best 14 home runs this year and hit .281 and he was strong in the playoffs, hitting a home run in six straight games for the Mets, although he slumped in the World Series.