Mets trade OF Jay Bruce, RHP Gerson Bautista, RHP Anthony Swarzak, RHP Justin Dunn, OF Jarred Kelenic to the Seattle Mariners for 2B Robinson Canó, RHP Edwin Díaz, and cash.
The first glaring error the Mets made this offseason was the trade with the Seattle Mariners. While Díaz has performed well in comparison to the rest of the bullpen, he is still far below his 2018 season, where he posted a 1.96 ERA in 73.1 innings while recording a Major League-leading 57 saves. His slider is not as sharp and while he is still racking up strikeouts (15.08 K/9), he is still off from his previous season.
Robinson Canó, on the other hand, has been nothing but disappointment for the Mets in 2019. After re-aggravating his left quad, Canó was placed on the disabled list yet again. Canó has only appeared in 46 games for the Mets this season.
In 215 plate appearances, he is batting .223 with a career-worst 19.5 K% and owns a .636 OPS with RISP. Canó has not held up defensively and one particular play injured OF Michael Conforto. Canó’s constant IL stints and refusal to run out ground balls do not pair well with his on-field performance and to make matters worse, Canó is still under contract through 2023, Canó’s age 40 season.
The Mets owe Canó $120 million during this time (not including the $20 million from Seattle).
Not only does this move cripple the Mets financially, but it also depleted their farm system. Their 2018 first round pick Jarred Kelenic was recently promoted to A+ during his first full professional season.
Kelenic hit .309 with 11 HR and 29 RBI while also swiping 7 bases. Kelenic is just 19 years old.
Justin Dunn, 2016 first round pick out of Boston College, should have been viewed as a future rotation piece and Mets fans should agonize over losing this talented arm.
Dunn features a fastball that touches 99 at times with a sweeping slider that devastates hitters. His changeup and curveball are a work in progress. Drawing early comparisons to the late Yordano Ventura, Dunn is an electric flamethrower in a slim 6’2 frame. After reaching AA with the Mets in 2018, Dunn owns a 3.46 ERA over 65 innings in AA with a 4.05 K/BB ratio.
The Mets now lose the ability to add Dunn to their talented staff either as an additional piece or as a replacement if the Mets were to trade a starter or lose a starter via free agency.
Lastly, this trade hurts the Mets’ ability to make impact trades. Dunn and Kelenic were drafted with the intentions of being developed as cornerstone players. After this trade, you also lose the ability to use them to make a major splash if needed either at the trade deadline or further down the road. This would mean trading for an impact player would be more costly as the Mets have fewer top prospects to deal.
Most GMs would have either given up prospects or taken on a large salary to acquire Díaz. Brodie Van Wagenen managed to do both; this trade took advantage of a rookie GM and while it is still early, can haunt the Mets for years to come.
Now that the Mariners debacle is out of the way, it is time to reconstruct the Mets offseason moves.