Keone Kela has missed the beginning of the season due to his battle with the coronavirus but is expected back very soon. With his return near, the Mets should look into his availability. Kela has been a solid arm the last couple of years and would be a big boost to this Mets bullpen. The Pirates will also be very interested in moving him.
Last season, the Pirates suspended Kela because of an altercation he had with a staff member. With the Pirates in a full rebuild, they likely won’t want someone who caused trouble in their clubhouse.
Kela will be a free agent after this season and is a great buy-low candidate for the Mets. He struck out 12.9 batters per 9 innings last year and had a 2.12 ERA in his 32 appearances. Battles with an elbow injury as well as the suspension limited him.
However, since he’s on an expiring contract and is on a rebuilding team, the Pirates will likely push to move him before the August 31st deadline and will likely not take much to get him.
Joe Jimenez is the youngest reliever of the 5 listed and has the most team control left as he is 25 years old and is under team control through the 2023 season. Jimenez is a solid reliever with tremendous upside and lots of room to improve. While he has yet to get an ERA below 4 for a season, he has shown he has great stuff. Jimenez for his career has struck out 11.0 batters per nine innings and in 2019, he struck out 12.4 batters per nine innings.
The big problem for Jimenez in 2019 was the home run ball. He gave up 2.0 home runs per 9 innings, a number that has to go down for him to be effective. Jimenez is still young and can definitely improve on that. With a change of scenery, he might end up being that dominant guy he’s so capable of becoming.
The Tigers are in the middle of a big rebuild and they don’t have much of a need to keep a reliever while they struggle to contend. If they can get something of value, I do believe the Tigers end up moving Jimenez. While the Mets shouldn’t give up too much for him, if they can get the right deal I think Jimenez would be a big help for this year and years to come.
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All five of these guys would help the Mets in the 2020 season, and three of the five can help them in the future. The Mets have had such a bad bullpen for so long and getting an arm on this list could really help this team compete.