The Mets can’t score four runs in a game deGrom gives up three is a season-long pattern that’s killing the team. Moves are on tap – make them!
The Mets front office will not sit idly by as the offense continues to sputter.
With 28 days until the annual trade deadline, the Mets need to leap now to improve the team because, as we’re learning, the returning players can’t hit either.
By now, Acting GM Jake Scott and Sandy Alderson must have their eyes set on the players they are targeting, along with a whiteboard detailing the pros and cons of each player.
Conversely, the Mets probably have a pretty good idea of which players they consider expendable or adequate bait to induce other teams.
Mets: Why Not Now?
So why not attempt to execute the trades now, while the Mets still have the lead in the NL East Standings?
The fact is the Mets have been as lucky as they are good. The Bench Mob came along to hold the fort down while the rest of the division offered little or no challenge.
In the last week or so, though, the Washington Nationals have come knocking at Mets door, and the Braves – well, they’re still the Braves and always capable of waking up in time for the second half.
The trouble, of course, is that if the Mets decide to jump the gun, will they be able to convince other teams to follow suit?
Likely, most teams are still in the internal evaluation stage, asking themselves, who are we, and do we have a chance at this thing?
Without naming names of players the Mets might be targeting because that’s a useless exercise anyway, these teams on hold could be, for instance, the Cardinals who are half-in and half out in the NL Central, or the Toronto Blue Jays, who may be a player or two away from snaring a Wild Card spot.
This probably means the Mets will need to sweeten the pot a bit to entice teams to move at this (still) early stage.
However, the Mets ace-in-the-hole is Steve Cohen, who, while saying he will examine each addition to the team one by one, also said he is not averse to exceeding the luxury tax limit this year.
For teams going nowhere and looking to dump some salary, the caliber of something similar to what the Rockies did with Nolan Arenado, the bridge to the Mets is wide open.
Mets And The Balancing Act
That being said, the Mets also need to be mindful of their need to get younger, as there are only four other teams with an average player age higher than theirs, at 29.2.
So, adding a Jon Lester, now 37 as an example, to the pitching staff, for example, is not a move the Mets will make, even though he’s still pitching well and probably would help the team.
Ditto position players like Whit Merrifield (32) of the Royals, Charlie Blackmon (37) of the Rockies, or Eric Hosmer (32) of the Padres.
They’re all good players who can add some oomph to the Mets offense, but they carry hefty salaries, and they either passed or are well into their prime.
Balancing the team’s needs against these two factors makes the job of Scott and Alderson that much tougher, but as they say, that’s why they get paid the big bucks.
The schedule for July after the Subway Series is by no means a piece of cake, with dates against the first-place Brewers, the Reds, a team on the make and rising, the powerhouse Toronto Blue Jays, the Braves, and then the Reds again.
Along the way, the Mets cannot afford any hiccups, and the best way to avoid that is via addition by subtraction – ASAP.
Here’s What Readers Are Saying…
Hsin-Yuan Huang I am not sure that will work. You may end up paying a high price to trade for someone who goes into a funk immediately after he arrives. The regular lineup is supposed to be good. Good average with good power. Not this dismal. Alfonso is supposed to be the power provider, not someone who hits singles. He is the only one with a respectable average. I think this is not a personnel problem but either coaching or psychological or approach or all of the above problems.
Rick Tuit Agreed, especially with getting younger talent. That way you are also building for more than half a season, and will be less injury-prone in the process.
Steve Walker Yeah, yeah, – just hold on.
Michael Oneil The sky is not falling. Bad games happen. DeGrom us human. We need to weather the storm and keep fighting. We can’t make panic moves, We need to make smart moves. Author’s Note: I was hoping I communicated the same thing, just with a little more speed is all.