Even after releasing Luis Castillo in mid-March, the Mets had four candidates to play second base—and no one they could feel good about calling their second baseman. Here's an idea: Instead of using a glove-first player who can't hit and has no future—such as 26-year-old Luis Hernandez, who has been with three organizations since 2008—the Mets should use 2011 to figure out whether Daniel Murphy or Rule 5 pick Brad Emaus can handle the keystone. Both have offensive skills to recommend them. Murphy, 25, a former first baseman--outfielder being remade as a middle infielder, hit 12 home runs in 2009 before missing all of '10 with a knee injury. Emaus, 25, had an .874 OPS and hit 15 home runs at Double A and Triple A last year. Second base defense should be a lesser concern for a team that features just one ground-ball pitcher in the rotation (Mike Pelfrey) and a number of fly-ball pitchers. The Mets, who are unlikely to catch the Phillies and the Braves under any circumstance, can trade defense for offense if it means finding a long-term solution at the position.