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NY Mets: Four early starting pitcher trade targets for the 2020 season

ARLINGTON, TEXAS - JULY 25: Jon Gray #55 of the Colorado Rockies throws against the Texas Rangers in the second inning at Globe Life Field on July 25, 2020 in Arlington, Texas. The 2020 season had been postponed since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TEXAS - JULY 25: Jon Gray #55 of the Colorado Rockies throws against the Texas Rangers in the second inning at Globe Life Field on July 25, 2020 in Arlington, Texas. The 2020 season had been postponed since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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Mets
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – JULY 30: A general view of the game between the New York Mets and the Boston Red Sox during the third inning at Citi Field on July 30, 2020 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

The New York Mets could go looking for starting pitcher help this year. Fortunately, these four names may be available to help.

Going into the 2020 season, there was an expectation that the New York Mets would be contenders. After an 86-76 2019 season and a 46-26 second half, the Mets looked poised to build off of that for a full season. However, pitching seems to be a clear issue. Yes, we are just six games into the shortened 2020 season but the holes are glaring.

Back in March, Noah Syndergaard tore his UCL ending his 2020 season. A big blow to the rotation that already lost Zack Wheeler this past offseason. Then right before the season started, Marcus Stroman, the teams presumed number 2 starter following Syndergaard’s injury, was placed on the injured list with a torn left calf muscle and will be out for a significant amount of time.

This leaves the Mets rotation with Jacob deGrom and a bunch of question marks. Not the ideal spot a contender wants to be in.

deGrom has won back to back Cy Young Awards and is clearly the best pitcher in baseball. He leads this rotation which is now followed by Steven Matz, Rick Porcello, Michael Wacha, and David Peterson. Matz was fantastic in his first start of the season against the Braves and is coming off of a very solid second half of the 2019 season in which he pitched to a 3.52 ERA but he has yet to be consistent for a prolonged period of time in his Mets career.

Porcello, the 2016 American League Cy Young Award Winner, is coming off of a season in which he had the worst ERA among qualified starters and was lit up by the Braves in his first start lasting just two innings allowing seven runs. Wacha was also signed this past offseason but has battled injuries the last couple of years and hasn’t really pitched well since his breakout season in 2015 when he was an all-star and won 17 games.

Lastly, David Peterson just made his first major league start this past Tuesday at Fenway Park. Yes, he did pitch well but it’s hard to believe someone who has yet to throw an inning in AAA will continue to thrive on the major league level.

To sum up, if the Mets want to contend in 2020, they will need to upgrade their rotation. There are too many question marks for a team that already has a bullpen in which they cannot rely upon on most nights. However, upgrading this rotation is not so easy.

The Mets farm system is very depleted after trading away guys like Jared Kelenic, Justin Dunn, Anthony Kay, and Simeon Woods-Richardson. With that in mind, the guys who will be listed are not huge names as the Mets likely won’t want to get rid of more highly touted prospects.

Fortunately, these four starting pitchers I believe can make the Mets better for the 2020 season and in some cases, beyond that.

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