This off-season has featured the Mets being interested in many players, and never seem to acquire a single one of them. This extends to the second base position as they have shown interest in Ian Kinsler, Jason Kipnis, Cesar Hernandez, and Josh Harrison.
Now, three of those names have still not been traded. However, it has been recently reported that Kipnis is now unlikely to be traded and the Phillies likely feel no urgency to trade Hernandez inside the division. The Mets also do not have interest in signing Neil Walker.
So, that leaves Harrison as potentially the Mets best chance at getting a second baseman not named Jose Reyes for next season.
The 30-year-old hit .272/.339/.432 this past season with a career-high of 16 home runs with 47 RBIs that gave him a wRC+ of 104. For his career, he has hit a similar .281/.321/.414 with a wRC+ of 101.
He also brought an element of speed to the table with 12 stolen bases last season.
His best value might be in his defense, though. At second base, Harrison recorded six defensive runs saved last season and has 22 for his career at the keystone. He also recorded two defensive runs saved at third base last season and 19 for his career.
He can also play the left field, but he is league average at the position as he finished with zero defensive runs saved this past season and has the same number for his career.
Taking all of this into account, Harrison managed to record 3.3 WAR for the season and allowed him to make his second career All-Star Game.
The ability to play multiple positions at a plus or at least league average level would give the Mets a lot of flexibility in their construction of the roster and allow them to mix and match based on matchups.
Furthermore, Harrison is well known around Major League Baseball as being a hard-worker and great clubhouse presence with the type of grit the Mets missed last season as evidenced by the video below from 2013.
On top of it all, Harrison also comes with potentially three years of control with options in 2019 and 2020. He will make $10 million this season followed by $10.5 million in 2019 and $11.5 million in 2020 if those options were to be picked up.
Sign me up, right?
Well, he is not going to come too cheap in a trade and with a thin farm system, it might be difficult for the Mets to give the Pittsburgh Pirates the package they want.
However, with about six weeks left until the start of Spring Training time is running out for the Pirates to find a match in a trade and they want to start a rebuild as they are also looking to trade Gerrit Cole and Andrew McCutchen.
So, while he should require a reasonable package, the Mets will not have to surrender a top prospect or Dominic Smith to get him. He likely will require either a couple second-tier options or a current major leaguer, such as Robert Gsellman or Seth Lugo.
Harrison brings a unique skill-set that the Mets should jump at if he can be had at a reasonable price.