Ike Davis and Lucas Duda may both be in spring training with the Mets after all.Can anyone say awkward?
Mets insiders now expect Ike Davis will be in spring training with the team in Port St. Lucie, Fla. -- while cautioning they are willing to reengage the Pittsburgh Pirates or Milwaukee Brewers or any other club in search of a first baseman in trade talks in the six weeks before pitchers and catchers report on Feb. 15.
Sources add that Davis genuinely does want to remain with the Mets.
Of course, there is a difference between Davis coming to spring training and making it all the way to Opening Day.
Another team could have an injury during spring training and need to acquire a first baseman. Or, a team like the Pirates -- who recently traded for Triple-A first baseman Chris McGuiness -- could become dissatisfied with their internal options during spring training and resume speaking with the Mets.
Mets officials largely project Lucas Duda as having the better long-term potential, but are not averse to Davis being the first baseman in 2014.
If both players were on the Opening Day roster, there technically would be a first-base competition during spring training. Still, Davis likely would get the bulk of the early season duty. After all, while Duda has significant home-run potential, Davis has hit 32 homers in a season as recently as 2012.
A surplus at the position is viewed as a good problem to have by team officials.
Davis, who is eligible for arbitration, is projected to earn $3.825 million this season. Duda, also eligible for arbitration, should earn about $1.8 million.