While the Mets appear set on adding a middle reliever to bolster the relief corps, the solutions to fixing the offense and starting rotation are murky and unclear at best.
It doesn’t take a baseball pundit to see that the 2016 season has not gone according to plan so far. The rotation, lauded as a stabilizing force this year, is in dire need of reinforcements. After Matt Harvey‘s season ending injury, Zack Wheeler‘s rehab setback, and the bone spurs of Steven Matz and Noah Syndergaard, the group is possibly just one more injury away from catastrophe. Even so, given the thin class of starting pitchers available on the trade market, the Mets could be inclined to give their in-house talent a closer look.
“I think what we have here is more than enough,” Mets assistant GM John Ricco told reporters, defending the team’s passive approach to the trade market.
On the offensive side, the Mets are in need of an impact bat that can play corner infield spot and provide protection for Yoenis Cespedes in the lineup. However the team is adamant about hanging onto burgeoning stars Amed Rosario and Dominic Smith, one or both of whom would be required to complete a deal for an impact player.
Still, several teams have been reportedly scouting the Mets’ minor league talent in Double A Binghamton, where both Rosario and Smith are performing well. The Mets have even received calls about Michael Conforto, whose early season struggles may have removed him from the Mets’ list of untouchables.
While the Mets may be publicly unwilling to part with any of their young talent, their quiet public stance is reminiscent of their attitude during last year’s deadline, where they insisted that their top shelf talent was untouchable before swinging a deal to acquire Yoenis Cespedes just minutes before the deadline.
This year could be different, and barring a drastic change in the trade market, it appears that the Mets will have a relatively uneventful deadline. Team officials have even said publicly that the Mets are unlikely to make a superstar acquisition. That said, it wouldn’t surprise me if Sandy Alderson has another ace in the hole, and all he’s waiting for is his chance to play it.