According to recent New York Mets rumors, the team is shopping catcher Kevin Plawecki. Where could he go and what could they get back?
When the New York Mets signed Wilson Ramos, it became clear they would need to make room for him behind the plate. The catching duo of Travis d’Arnaud and Kevin Plawecki would not return as a platoon for 2019. As recent Mets trade rumors have noted, it’s Plawecki who will get shopped harder this winter.
d’Arnaud has avoided arbitration, further adding some fuel these Mets trade rumors. I don’t foresee anyone making a trade for a catcher of d’Arnaud’s ability at $3.5 million with an expiring contract and zero games under his belt after Tommy John Surgery. Although Mike Puma of the NY Post has suggested d’Arnaud could become more of a utility player and both stay, I see them going a more traditional direction and keeping only catcher options on the 25-man roster.
That’s not to say Plawecki is much better. While he stayed relatively healthy after his early season disabled list stint, he wasn’t too helpful at or behind the plate. The former first-round draft pick batted only .210/.315/.370 in 277 plate appearances for the Mets in 2018. In what became his most active season on the field, he greatly disappointed.
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Teams will ask about Plawecki. He’s a decent enough backup catcher about to enter the first year of arbitration eligibility. When you can have a backup catcher with experience making MLB pennies, you’re showing some good financial responsibility. Because of this, his years of control remaining, and age I do see the Mets finding a partner.
There haven’t been teams named in the Mets trade rumors involving a possible landing spot for Plawecki. One possibility would be sending him to the Texas Rangers as part of a package to acquire lefty Mike Minor. However, the big obstacle here is getting Minor to waive his no-trade clause. The Mets are, unfortunately, on his list of teams he must first approve.
Surely, there are other destinations out there. The Oakland Athletics are one possible destination. They have internal options right now but have recently shown an interest in platooning catchers. Plawecki’s ability to also take some innings at first base could intrigue them.
I would also name the Los Angeles Angels as a potential match. Their current options, Kevan Smith and Jose Briceno, are hardly reliable. Adding Plawecki could be a minor move to ensure they have a battle in Spring Training.
I suspect any Mets trade rumors about where Plawecki goes will come fast and furious. He’s not a very appealing name on the trade block or a guy a team will enter 2019 with as the starter. Frankly, I don’t think he even gets a platoon gig.
Plawecki won’t bring back much to Flushing. I expect a cash deal or a low-level minor leaguer is all we see swapped for him.
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Sadly, Plawecki the latest first-round bust in this franchise’s history. We’ve likely seen the end of his Mets days.