|Photo credit to Michael Baron|
2013 - Bos - Mike Napoli (139 gms, .259 BA, 23 HR, 92 RBI)
2012 - SF - Brandon Belt (145 gms, .275 BA, 7 HR, 56 RBI)
2011 - StL - Albert Pujols (147 gms, .299 BA, 37 HR, 99 RBI)
2010 - SF - Aubrey Huff (157 gms .290 BA, 26 HR, 86 RBI) *100 gms @1B
2009 - NYY - Mark Teixeira (156 gms, .292 BA, 39 HR, 122 RBI)
2008 - Phi - Ryan Howard (162 gms, .251 BA, 48 HR, 146 RBI)
2007 - Bos - Kevin Youkalis (145 gms, .288 BA 16 HR, 83 RBI)
2006 - StL - Pujols (143 gms, .331 BA, 49 HR, 137 RBI)
2005 - ChiW - Paul Konerko (158 gms, .283 BA, 40 HR, 100 RBI)
2004 - Bos - Kevin Millar (150 gms, .297 BA, 18 HR, 74 RBI) *69 gms @ 1B
Doug Mientkiewicz ( 49 gms, .215 BA, 1 HR, 10 RBI)
With the exception of 2004, when the Red Sox traded mid-season for Mientkiewicz, every team has had a first baseman who played at least 100 games at the position for their respective team. In 2010, Aubrey Huff spent most of June and July filling in the OF for the Giants, but was the teams primary first baseman the majority of the season. And aside from Mientkiewicz/Millar in 2004 and Brandon Belt in 2012, these first baseman have been power hitting run producers in the middle of the line up. I know all the Bill James wannabes are going to have something to say about the stats I've chosen to use. I only used basic stats just to paint a picture of what a typical first baseman usually projects as.
I am in no way comparing the 2014 Mets with these great teams. I don't believe that even with the moves the Mets have made that they are to be taken seriously as championship contenders. They will be competitive and they will be entertaining, but obviously there is more to be done. The Mets do have a lot more holes that need to be filled, including shortstop and the bullpen. I believe though that if the Mets anticipate contending soon, then first base needs to be solidified. No matter who the last man standing is, either Ike or Duda, then you're going to have to use 2014 to gauge whether they are your first basemen or not. Otherwise it's time to cut the cord and find someone who can go play first base everyday.
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