Sep 7, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Edwin Encarnacion (10) looks on from the on deck circle in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

John Harper Opines on Potential Mets Trades

In today’s Daily News, columnist John Harper puts together five trade scenarios he thinks the Mets should look into this offseason.  His main point?  The Mets should be willing to deal starting pitching for the power hitting outfielder they desire.

It needs to be pointed out that the deals suggested by Harper aren’t born out of insider knowledge.  They’re merely ideas.  Some make sense, some seem outlandish.  You can read them all in his column.  Here are some of the highlights:

Jon Niese, Rafael Montero, and Ike Davis to the Orioles for J.J. Hardy, Nick Markakis and Wei-Yin Chen
Hardy has been a huge bargain for the Orioles but he’s going into the final year of his three-year, $22.5 million contract, and he’ll be looking to cash in on his value as a power-hitting, Gold Glove-winning shortstop.

In the above deal and another deal (that would bring Edwin Encarnacion back from Toronto), Harper has the Mets dealing Jonathon Niese and Rafael Montero in the same package.

Parting with pitching for Hardy and Markakis or for Encarnacion isn’t crazy, but the Mets don’t have the luxury of dealing one of their rotation cornerstones and one of their best young trade chips like Montero in a deal like that.
In another proposed deal, Harper has the Mets and Dodgers doing this:

Zack Wheeler and Daniel Murphy to the Dodgers for Andre Ethier, Joc Pederson and Zach Lee

That deal is laughable, and shouldn’t be something the Mets would ever consider.  Ethier is a glorified platoon player who will be 32 in April, the Dodgers are eager to get rid of him and his bloated contract.  Dealing Wheeler in a deal for him would be absurd.

As Harper points out in his article, Zach Lee isn’t seen as nearly the type of impact guy that Wheeler is.  So, the Mets would basically be dealing one of the highest ceiling young pitchers in baseball and their starting second baseman for a pitcher who isn’t close to Wheeler talent wise, an old, expensive platoon player, and Joc Pederson.  No thanks.
In another potential deal, Harper has the Mets sending Dillon Gee, Rafael Montero, and Daniel Murphy to the Angels for Mark Trumbo and his sub-300 on base percentage, Howie Kendrick (an older, more expensive version of Murphy), and reliever Mike Morin.  I think Sandy Alderson would laugh if the Angels proposed that.
Harper also suggests dealing Noah Syndergaard to the Cubs for shortstop prospect Javier Baez.  That’s not crazy, and is the type of one for one deal the Mets should be discussing in the event they change their minds and become receptive to dealing Syndergaard.
As is noted above, some of Harper’s ideas are good, and some seem like things Sandy Alderson would scoff at.  His main point, though, is that with a weak free agent class, the Mets should be exploring the trade market.  All indications are that they will.

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Tags: Daniel Murphy Ike Davis Jonathon Niese New York Mets Noah Syndergaard Rafael Montero

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