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Mets: Three positions they could go the cheap route with this winter

NEW YORK - APRIL 13: A flag flies over Citi Field before opening day on April 13, 2009 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. This is the first regular season MLB game being played at the new venue which replaced Shea stadium as the Mets home field. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - APRIL 13: A flag flies over Citi Field before opening day on April 13, 2009 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. This is the first regular season MLB game being played at the new venue which replaced Shea stadium as the Mets home field. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
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NEW YORK, NEW YORK – AUGUST 25: Seth Lugo #67 of the New York Mets in action against the Miami Marlins at Citi Field on August 25, 2020 in New York City. Miami Marlins defeated the New York Mets 3-0. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

Filling out the starting rotation with a cheap option

It takes two to tango and five men to complete a starting rotation. The Mets will have to make some huge changes to theirs this offseason with possibly only Jacob deGrom and David Peterson coming back.

Free agency offers a few top-quality names yet not enough to completely revamp the starting five. They will need to go cheap with at least one spot and I don’t want it to be via free agency.

Instead, it’s time for the Mets to focus on which pitchers within their organization have the guts to start in the big leagues, which ones don’t, and who belongs in the bullpen.

The Mets are using 2020 to answer some of these questions. Seth Lugo has shifted to the rotation. While not incredibly cheap, he’ll make less in 2021 than Rick Porcello is in 2020.

Other pitchers who are candidates to join the rotation in 2021 include Robert Gsellman, Corey Oswalt, and Franklyn Kilome. At least one of them needs to earn a spot on the Opening Day roster in some capacity. Better yet, one needs to look like a real option for the starting rotation.

Perhaps I’m just sour on the idea of paying a veteran free agent $10 million to become the team’s fifth starter. You can blame any number of recent players for this. It just never seems to work out well. A team seems better off giving the job to a kid and rotating through until they find the right one.

Down in the minors, there are a few other players the organization can turn to. Given the choice between one of them and a major improvement at another position rather than a pair of mid-to-low-tier players, I’m going with the star player and the rookie.

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Which positions do you think the Mets will pay the most for and which can they get away with paying less? And yes—I’m fully aware of how much of a job interview question that sounded like. Now, where do you see yourself in five years?

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