Brodie Van Wagenen did a great job as an agent convincing the New York Mets to sign Todd Frazier and Jason Vargas. A year later, he’s the general manager and still dealing with the mess.
When the name Brodie Van Wagenen became part of the New York Mets vocabulary on a daily basis, we knew him best as the man who represented several key members of the organization. His big clients included Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, and Yoenis Cespedes among others. During their time with the Mets, these players have offered the organization a mixed bag of results.
Guys like deGrom and Syndergaard have been key components to their success. As two of the men acquired by the Mets through a way that didn’t involve Van Wagenen’s salesmanship during the free agency period, they fall into a different category from those who joined the team by choice. This list includes Cespedes, Todd Frazier, and Jason Vargas.
Frazier and Vargas are similar in the eyes of Mets fans. Neither really has a place on this roster. Both are overpaid, past their prime, and suffered through horrible 2018 campaigns. The story has been the same for Vargas in 2019. As for Frazier, he’s been absent altogether.
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When this pair signed with New York, BVW was the man who helped sell them to the Mets. Now as the general manager, it’s a mess he has to clean up as best as possible.
To his credit, Van Wagenen did attempt to improve over Frazier by signing another former client of his, Jed Lowrie. Well, things haven’t gone as planned. He is also on the injured list and there’s no timetable for a return.
Van Wagenen also acquired Robinson Cano via trade this winter, adding yet another offensive weapon to the lineup he hoped could provide this team with runs. It hasn’t worked out so well thus far, but the jury is still in deliberation before a verdict comes out.
It’s the Vargas mess Van Wagenen failed to clean up most. The Mets have more third base and first base options than they know what to do with right now so any remorse for signing Frazier can dissipate as long as he sees less action this year. The same isn’t true for Vargas.
The Mets did attempt to add some starting pitching depth to the organization. However, there’s no absolute lock to improve upon Vargas. They seemed hopeful that a stronger second half for the veteran lefty in 2018 was a sign of better things to come this year. Unfortunately, it hasn’t been the case through a pair of starts and one really bad relief appearance.
An issue many foresaw was a loyalty to this former clients. As the general manager, he has to become a little more ruthless and look at those players differently.
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Kudos to Brodie Van Wagenen the agent for getting these men multi-year contracts worth more than they deserve. Sympathize with Brodie Van Wagenen the general manager for the mess his counterpart created.