MMO Mailbag: Castro or CarGo?
The trade winds are blowing, which means the ideas are coming! We received the following message from Ramon.
I recently read that Starlin Castro was available, along with Carlos Gonzalez. Do you see it possible for the Mets to acquire Castro? What do you think it would cost the Mets to acquire both him (considering we’d be buying low since he’s had a poor season)? What about CarGo as well?
Starlin Castro is a very interesting situation. At 23 years old, he is having an exceptionally bad season. When you look at his numbers prior to this year, it may appear that he hasn’t lived up to the hype. That’s probably true but, he was still a pretty solid option at SS.
In January of this year Bruce Levine of ESPNChicago.com reported that the Diamondbacks and Cubs discussed a deal that would send Justin Upton to the Cubs. The problem with the deal? The Diamondbacks wanted Castro, and the Cubs said no.
To me, that doesn’t rule out the idea that Castro can be traded – it just suggests how highly the Cubs think of it. Sure, he’s struggled this year but is that enough for the Cubs to totally change their opinion of his value?
The Cubs signed Castro in August of 2012 to an 8 year deal. I personally do not think Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer would do that if they were willing to give up on him after 75 games. The Cubs are heavily invested in Castro, and unless they were blown away, I can’t see them dealing him right now.
As for Carlos Gonzalez, he’s back in the trade talks again! The one thing you always hear about CarGo is that he has one of the sweetest swings in the game. At age 27, he is locked into a contract through 2017. He will make a total of $74 million over the next 4 years.
Gonzalez is having an odd year by CarGo standards. Why?
For the first time in his career, he is hitting quite well away from Colorado. Is that just a fluke or has he figured something out? I’m honestly not sure.
Away from Colorado, Gonzalez is a .268 hitter with limited power with 45 homeruns over the last 5 years. To put that into perspective, when he plays inside the friendly confines of Coors Field, he is a .344 hitter with 71 homeruns over the last 5 years.
He couldn’t be more of a different player away from Coors Field. My problem with CarGo isn’t his talent, it’s his price. I would imagine if the Mets wanted him that they would be paying for the .344 hitter that simply isn’t coming to Citi Field.
I believe Gonzalez would give many fans a false sense of hope. He’s a good baseball player, but he’ll get paid to provide significant power that I do not think will translate well in New York.
Is a .268 hitter worth an average of almost $16 million a year over the next four years if he has limited power? I think the answer is an obvious no, but more importantly is that player worth a significant prospect package?
I do hope the Mets find themselves in a situation to add a bat that they can count on for the next 1-3 years, but I do not think they will go out and trade for a player who is overvalued and or overpaid over a longterm contract.
About the Author: Michael J. Branda
My time with MMO began in July of 2009 when I wrote a Fan Post defending Omar Minaya (before it was cool to do that.) I grew up a Mets fan with the mid 1980's teams. My favorite Met of all-time is (and was) Wally Backman. When it comes to sabermetrics versus old school thinking, I like to think I meet in the middle. I believe thinking of new ways to get answers is helpful, especially when the same way has not produced results. However, I think over-thinking certain situations can get you into trouble. I'm excited for the new regime, because I believe they have pieces in place to focus on several aspects of the Mets organization. I've waited this long for a World Series, waiting a few more years for another chance isn't going to kill me.
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