Here’s a recap and thoughts regarding pertinent rumors and news that have been circulating early today…
With today being an off day for the Mets, Andy Maritno’s article on the Mets and Giancarlo Stanton has set the twitterverse abuzz. Here’s a snippet from the article:
Although they do not know if the Marlins will move him (Miami declined to shop Stanton even after the outfielder Tweeted about being “pissed off” after the Reyes trade), the Mets continue to monitor the situation, fully realizing that any deal would almost certainly have to include Wheeler and top catching prospect Travis d’Arnaud. Would you trade those blue chippers for a guy who might become the premier slugger of his generation? I say, hell yes, duh, no brainer, but let’s hear from people whose opinions actually matter. “In a heartbeat,” said one Mets official, who is not in Alderson’s inner-circle of decision-makers, but has a voice in discussions. The guy then snapped his fingers. “Nothing against those kids, but it’s Giancarlo.”
Said another Mets official, also not in the top tier of decision-makers: “If you could do that, you would have to. You trade the pitcher for the everyday player almost every time.” And what about d’Arnaud, the catcher of the future acquired in December for Cy Young Award-winner R.A. Dickey? “You can figure the catching out later,” the official said. “You have John Buck now, and hey, Brian McCann is going to be a free agent.” Added a scout familiar with the players in this still-fictional deal: “Wheeler and d’Arnaud for Stanton? I would say the Mets might have to give up more than that.”
…there’s a ton to digest here, but the first thing that has to be pointed out is the fact that Martino is getting these quotes from Mets officials who have no decision making power. Now, would Sandy Alderson and his top lieutenants deal Zack Wheeler and Travis d’Arnaud for Giancarlo Stanton? Probably. However, as is pointed out in the last sentence of the aforementioned quote, it would likely take more than Wheeler and d’Arnaud for the Mets to snag Stanton.
The common refrain is that there are 29 teams in baseball who would love to trade for Stanton. That’s true. However, there are only a small amount of teams who have the chips that would be able to entice Miami. The Mets are one of those teams. Still, I’m betting it would take two or three more blue chip prospects in order to get a deal done. The Mets wouldn’t just be shipping off Wheeler and d’Arnaud, they’d likely be saying goodbye to prospects such as Rafael Montero, Noah Syndergaard, and Wilmer Flores.
Stanton is a once in a generation talent. That can’t be argued. What can be argued, is whether the Mets should gut their entire farm system in order to snag him.
Here’s Adam Rubin’s thoughts on whether it would take more than Wheeler and d’Arnaud to land Stanton, and the ins and outs of a potential Stanton deal:
Probably would take more than that, considering the Jays gave up d’Arnaud, Syndergaard and an outfield prospect for a 38-year-old R.A. Dickey. I’m sure the Mets have discussed him internally, like 28 other teams. They’d be irresponsible/negligent if they didn’t. But that’s a long way from an actual deal. First, the Marlins would have to resolve to trade Stanton — who is under their control as an arbitration-eligible player through the 2016 season. Then the Mets would have to be the most aggressive pursuer, since there would be a ton of teams interested. So let’s relax on this. At least Justin Upton was legitimately being shopped, so there was something concrete there. And at least Michael Bourn was an actual free agent. Those were tangible, so far more plausible.
On Carlos Gonzalez:
Martino mentioned in the same article (without quoting any Mets sources) that the Mets may also have interest in Colorado outfielder Carlos Gonzalez. Gonzalez is under contract through 2017, and is owed approximately $75 million. When you look at Gonzalez’ numbers, the 27 year old looks like he’d be a great get. When you dig deeper, it becomes evident that Gonzalez is in part a product of the thin air of Colorado.
His home/road splits are alarming. At Coors Field, Gonzalez has a triple slash of .338/.395/.607. On the road, his triple slash is .258/.313/.427. If I were the Mets, I’d steer clear of Gonzalez. I wouldn’t consider trading either Wheeler or d’Arnaud for Gonzalez, let alone both of them.
On Shaun Marcum:
According to the Daily News, Marcum (who has been out since the end of spring training with neck issues), threw a 30 pitch bullpen session yesterday. The plan is to see how Marcum responds today before scheduling him for two innings in a simulated game. If he gets through that test, he would toss five or so innings for Port St. Lucie in a rehab game before being activated from the disabled list.
The back of the Mets’ starting rotation simply won’t cut it. If Marcum is able to return in the next few weeks, it would alleviate part of the problem. No disrespect meant, but neither Jeremy Hefner or Aaron Laffey are major league caliber starting pitchers. Even after Marcum returns, the Mets will still be in need of rotation help. They can call up Collin McHugh if they feel Zack Wheeler isn’t ready, or they can simply opt to go for it with Wheeler once April 20th passes. Adam Rubin noted in this afternoon’s chat that the Mets are probably hell-bent on avoiding Super Two status with Wheeler, meaning he wouldn’t be called up until mid-June at the earliest.