MLB, New York Mets

Mets finally admit failure of a risky trade with latest roster move

The NY Mets will be moving forward without Darin Ruf after designating him for assignment, spelling the end of the short-lived Ruf experiement.

On Monday morning, the New York Mets announced that they were designating Darin Ruf for assignment in a move that accepts blame for their failed trade last August.

Seeking a designated hitter against lefty pitching, the Mets traded for Ruf last year, giving the San Francisco Giants J.D. Davis and several pitching prospects in return for the right-hander.

With Opening Day right around the corner, the Mets have chosen outfielder Tim Locastro to take Ruf’s place, a Syracuse native and former minor leaguer who can also serve as a solid backup option behind Brandon Nimmo in center field.

Is this the end for Darin Ruf in New York? All signs point unequivocally toward yes.

The 36-year-old put together a disappointing Spring Training and failed to live up to expectations in 74 plate appearances for the Mets last season.

Mets try to move on after calamitous Darin Ruf trade

Ruf made a name for himself on the Giants as a hitter who thrived off of left-handed pitching, and on paper, he was expected to pair nicely with Mets’ Daniel Vogelbach, a hitter who performed well against right-handed pitching.

The team’s hopes of creating a savvy DH platoon between Ruf and Vogelbach quickly fell apart within three months of the trade as Ruf batted .152 with no home runs and seven RBIs across 28 games.

He didn’t prove his usual dominance against lefty pitchers either, hitting just .149 when facing lefties compared to .252 back in San Francisco.

This past Spring Training, Ruf batted .167 with one RBI in eleven games. At that point, it was fair for New York to call it: the experiment was over; the trade failed.

The Mets decided to cut their losses now rather than drag Ruf through another torturous season, and they’ll have an option of trading him to offset some of the money they owe him (currently, Ruf is due $3.5 million).

For now, all eyes are on Locastro to fill the not-so-big hole Ruf leaves behind.

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