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New York Mets History

Mets and Reds trade history: Five notable deals between the two

3 May 1998: Pitcher John Franco of the New York Mets in action during a game against the Colorado Rockies at Shea Stadium in Flushing, New York. The Mets defeated the Rockies 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Al Bello /Allsport
3 May 1998: Pitcher John Franco of the New York Mets in action during a game against the Colorado Rockies at Shea Stadium in Flushing, New York. The Mets defeated the Rockies 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Al Bello /Allsport
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NEW YORK, NY – MAY 03: Matt Harvey #33 of the New York Mets looks on after giving up a 3-run home run to Ozzie Albies #1 of the Atlanta Braves in the seventh inning at Citi Field on May 3, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

The Change of Scenery Deal

In a trade that yielded more news off the field than on it, the Mets sent Matt Harvey to the Reds for catcher Devin Mesoraco. The May 8, 2018 trade came shortly after the Mets DFA’d Harvey after his refusal to accept a demotion to Triple-A.

For both teams, the trade made a lot of sense. The Mets were desperate for catching help and the Reds had availability in the starting rotation for Harvey to rebuild his stock and a possible return to pitching like the Dark Knight.

In 24 starts for the Reds, Harvey posted a very average 7-7 record to go with a 4.50 ERA. Another way to put it, he won only half the time and gave up a run every other inning he pitched. The performance wasn’t enough for the Reds to keep him around for 2019.

Meanwhile, Mesoraco continued to put up pedestrian numbers at the plate. He did, however, find a role as the unofficial personal catcher for Cy Young winner Jacob deGrom. The Mets ended up re-signing him for 2019, but an assignment to Triple-A, ironically, put him in baseball limbo when Mesoraco refused to report.

This Mets and Reds trade included a pair of players who only several seasons earlier looked like they were stars in the making. Since 2016, neither has been all that good.

When I look at this trade, I see it as a reflection of the way the Mets and Reds do business. It’s the perfect example of two teams trying to help themselves and, in a way, assist the other.

There is no doubt the Mets and Reds will make more trades in the coming years. The Mets may look to add veteran talent at the trade deadline like they did with Lenny Harris in 1998 or Jay Bruce in 2016. Or maybe there are lesser deals that still have an impact like the 1967 Bob Johnson for Art Shamsky swap.

Next. Mets trade history with the Indians is not a good one

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Beginning with the Mets purchasing Howie Nunn and then returning him to the Reds in April of 1962 before the first game in franchise history, these two teams are not afraid to make a deal.

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