Mets: Why a multiplayer trade deal with the Royals makes sense
The win-now New York Mets and the rebuilding Kansas City Royals could help each other out this winter with a multiplayer trade.
As I currently watch the New York Mets fall behind to the Phillies, Braves, and Nationals in overall roster talent this offseason, I keep thinking of different scenarios of what the Mets can do to correct some of their own issues with their current roster instead of just hoping the current players who had bad years in 2019 just play better in 2020.
The most glaring areas on the roster that need to be addressed first are the bullpen followed by the catcher position. Now that we have hopefully added 350 innings to our starting rotation with the additions of Rick Porcello and Michael Wacha, we need to add another lefty and a few other relief pitchers who can provide solid innings to our existing relief core of Seth Lugo, Edwin Diaz, Jeurys Familia, Justin Wilson, and Brad Brach.
As I examine the current Kansas City Royals roster, there are some players that could fit certain roles with the 2020 Mets and also be an upgrade to what we had in 2019. It seems like the Mets front office is determined to prove that their 2019 free agent signings and trades where good moves, instead of taking those results at face value and looking to upgrade for 2020.
Ian Kennedy has quietly put together a solid career (4.09 ERA 1.28 WHIP) and Kennedy now has the ability to pitcher anywhere in the game. He can start, he can be the long man, and he can close and pitch in late innings. Whatever is needed?
The problem with Kennedy is that he is overpaid and will be making 16+ million over the next 3 years. But in the right situation, he would be the perfect fit for a team competing for a championship.
Danny Duffy has always been a three or four starting pitching type, who throws lefty and wears number 41. He can also pitch in the bullpen and do think Duffy would also benefit from a change of scenery. He has always had good stuff but has had issues putting it all together.
The problem with Duffy is similar to the issue with Kennedy where he is scheduled to make $15+ million for next season. So he may be considered overpaid but looking at his career stats with Zack Wheeler, they are strikingly similar and Wheeler just got paid $23.6 million per year over 5 years. Yes, Wheeler may have more upside, but I think Duffy has some good seasons left in his lefty arm.
Another lefty coming out of the bullpen is Tim Hill. He’s coming off a decent season in 2019 (3.63 ERA / 1.11 WHIP) along with 8.8 strikeouts per 9 innings. He has a lifetime 4.11 ERA with 81 strikeouts in 85 innings. His 1.22 career whip is pretty good and it seems like he can get you a strikeout vs a tough lefty when you need it late in the game.
From what I hear, Salvador Perez is the pride of the Royals and even with his team going through a rebuild, the Royals do want to hopefully rebuild around Perez. Other than Yadier Molina, Perez has been the second-best overall catcher in the league for a while now.
He missed the entire 2019 campaign with an arm injury, which ended up needing Tommy John surgery, but looks to be ready for 2020 season.
The arm injury is definitely a red flag, along with his low on-base percentage and being a catcher approaching 30 with many innings already logged over the past decade, but since I don’t think the Royals will want to trade him let’s move on to some other players that would be more available for a trade. But if the Mets could find a way? It would be a game-changer similar to getting Gary Carter in 1985.
Since the Royals will probably look to keep Perez, why not look to obtain another catcher from the Royals roster, Cam Gallagher. With defensively challenged Wilson Ramos slated to be the 2020 starter, we need to have a backup who can provide Gold Glove level defense in late innings and receiving Noah Syndergaard. We do already have Tomas Nido, who is that good defensively but doesn’t provide much with the bat.
Gallagher does provide solid defense and does project to be a .700+ OPS type guy compared to Nido and his career .544 OPS. That being said, I think Nido should be given more of a chance before his fate is decided but it doesn’t hurt to have as much good catching depth as possible.
Now that we see which Royals players we would want to target in a trade, who would the Mets be able to trade to obtain either some or all of these players?
Would the Royals be interested in taking back some of the Mets short term bad contracts including Jed Lowrie or Familia to allow them to dump some salary with Kennedy and/or Duffy?
How many prospects would it take to make the Royals listen to offers for Perez? Do the Mets have the type of prospects to make that happen?
These are all great questions, so let’s see who the Mets have available to trade:
Dominic Smith, Robert Gsellman, Steven Matz, Jed Lowrie, Wilson Ramos, and David Peterson
I know some people are talking about trading Brandon Nimmo and J.D. Davis, but I totally disagree with that thinking. They both project to be .850+ OPS type guys and I think they are part of the solution and should be part of the future of the Mets.
Looking at both sides, I think the most realistic trade would be Dominic Smith, Robert Gsellman, and Jed Lowrie for Ian Kennedy and Tim Hill. But as mentioned earlier, if we can find a way to get Perez without giving up too much more that would be a game-changer for the Mets and would take them to that next level. But with the signings of Wacha and Porcello, there is not much of a need for Duffy anymore.
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What do you think would be a good New York Mets/Kansas City Royals trade this offseason?