Bidding for Trevor Bauer may come down to the New York Mets and Los Angeles Angels.
Prior to signing James McCann, the New York Mets were fighting for their catcher primarily with one other team. Situated in Southern California, the Los Angeles Angels appear ready to make a run next year by adding talent over the winter. A player that would fit in with them perfectly is at or near the top of the Mets’ offseason wish list, Trevor Bauer.
It’s no secret Bauer is one of the most sought-after free agents this winter. Every team in need of some pitching help should have him on their radar. I have a feeling the final decision will come down to a choice between Flushing and Orange County.
The Angels are similar to the Mets in a lot of ways. They are regarded as the “second team” in their city even if they technically aren’t within the bounds of Los Angeles. Mets fans know this well living in the shadow of the New York Yankees.
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Motivation for the Angels to actually win may be at an all-time high after the Los Angeles Dodgers ended their World Series drought in 2020. With many teams also crying poverty and more interested in breaking even next year, the Angels might be one of the few bigger spenders. It could start by signing Bauer.
The Angels haven’t had much success despite employing the best player in the league, Mike Trout. For years they have failed to do much in the standings despite handing out many big contracts. Remember the Josh Hamilton deal? What about C.J. Wilson? Albert Pujols is there despite being around 150-years-old give or take.
The desire to win at Citi Field is different. The Mets are under a new regime and with it comes a different kind of hunger to end the year with a parade.
Similar in some ways and different in others, the Bauer chase may come down to these two teams. Will he choose the hustle and bustle of New York City where you can’t pass gas without it getting reported? Or will Bauer end up in Los Angeles with a team most of the country barely knows exists playing alongside the best player the average person has never heard of?
I can already see the narrative now—Bauer signs with the Angels and hypes up how excited he is to play alongside guys like Trout, Pujols, and Anthony Rendon.
The same, though, could happen with Bauer signing to play for New York. Quotes about how much he admires Jacob deGrom. Tweets back-and-forth with Noah Syndergaard and Marcus Stroman. An unexpected admiration for what Seth Lugo can do as a unique weapon for this team, similar to what Andrew Miller gave the Cleveland Indians several years ago.
There are stories to be written about both scenarios. And obviously, I think you know which ones I’m rooting to write about.
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Where Bauer plays in 2021 and beyond is up to a few people. With one “L” on the board to the Mets, I just hope the Angels aren’t feeling the extra motivation to ensure they don’t land another by losing Bauer.