The Mets displaced Dominic Smith is a prime candidate any American League team would be interested in – if Brodie Van Wagenen markets him the right way…
If the Mets intend to leap over the next hurdle to win the NL East in 2020, and if they don’t have the desire or money to be players in the free-agent sweepstakes, the only thing left is the trade market.
But as we know, you don’t get something of value without giving up the same. So, what do the Mets have of value to excite the interest of prospective trade partners?
Cross out the Core Four of Jacob deGrom, Pete Alonso, Michael Conforto, and Amed Rosario – and what’s left? There’s nothing left in the Mets farm system of players who can be characterized as major league ready talent (Thank you Brodie Van Wagenen).
Mets: Moving down the line of tradeable talent
While Syndergaard offers the highest yield for the Mets in return on a trade, his value has increased with the departure of Zack Wheeler. Plus, the guy with all the stuff in the world is bound to have a break-out Cy Young season one of these years – and it could be in 2020.
Jeff McNeil has value to a team looking for an igniter at the top of their lineup. But the Mets would be crazy to deal him when you consider the number of team controlled years remaining before he reaches free-agency in 2025.
Dominic Smith and his lightning bat can hit a baseball. Limited to under 200 at-bats in 2019, Smith roared into the Mets lineup batting .282 with a .881 OPS.
The trouble is the Mets don’t have a place for Smith. A converted outfielder from first base where Pete Alonso owns the day, Smith did everything the Mets asked him to do, including shedding several pounds of baby fat he was carrying around two years ago.
Finding a National League team needing a first baseman is almost impossible, so the natural venue for Van Wagenen to pursue is in the American League, where Smith can thrive as a first base/outfielder/DH player.
Van Wagenen trades Smith for – who?
Next question? Who should be the target of Van Wagenen in a trade for Smith?
Sorry, that job belongs to Van Wagenen, who is being paid the big bucks by the Mets and his staff. There are holes in the bullpen, center field (even with the addition of Juan Lagares‘s clone – Jake Marisnick), and a starting pitcher.
Van Wagenen is in San Diego for the Winter Meeting, prime time for when trades, or at least the foundation of trades, are made.
It’s not easy work when twenty-nine other teams are scurrying around looking for lightning in a bottle. But again, and least, for now, Brodie Van Wagenen is it.
It’s almost a certainty Dominic Smith will be traded this offseason. What Mets fans will be looking for is the return the team gets for a player, who, for reasons beyond his control, would be an exciting addition to the Mets for years that lay ahead…