The latest New York Mets rumors suggest that the front office are in contact with free-agent outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr.
After the New York Mets blockbuster trade with the Cleveland Indians on Thursday afternoon that netted the organization both Francisco Lindor and Carlos Carrasco, there are now Mets rumors that have begun to surround a free agent center fielder not named George Springer. According to Michael Mayer, the New York Mets have recently been in contact with free-agent Jackie Bradley Jr., which is certainly an intriguing development as it seems the Mets may have grown a bit impatient with George Springer’s asking price.
Further fueling the latest Mets rumors surrounding Jackie Bradley Jr. include sources telling Jack Ramsey that the Mets could shift their focus entirely from Springer as they shift to a “quantity over quality” mode after the Lindor trade. While being out of the hunt for Springer is not what many Mets fans want to hear after the organization has long been thought of as favorites for the 31-year old outfielder, it does not come as a surprise as Springer seems to have his heels dug in the sand on his $150 million-plus asking price. We also have to remember that the Mets and Springer have been connected since around Thanksgiving with no movement to this point in the offseason.
Jackie Bradley Jr. has long been thought of as one of the premier center fielders defensively in the entire game of baseball and would provide a significant upgrade in center field for the Mets. Signing Bradley would further allow the Mets to move Brandon Nimmo to left field where his defense would profile better.
Since 2013, Bradley has only committed 17 errors in 781 total career games played in center field. Bradley also ranks third among all active leaders in center field assists with 54. When you analyze Bradley’s defensive metrics a bit more extensively, when his numbers are ranked up against all of the center fielders in the history of baseball, Bradley holds the 31st best career fielding percentage of all-time at .991.
While not entirely known for his offensive statistics, 30-year old JBJ had a great offensive campaign in 2020. Bradley put together a career-best .283 batting average this season to go along with a career-best .364 OBP while slugging seven home runs to go along with 22 RBI’s for the last-place Red Sox.
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It’s also important to mention that Bradley would command less money and years than George Springer will. We’ve seen already this offseason the Mets front office move on and not wait around for players such as J.T. Realmuto to make a decision. If Springer’s asking price doesn’t come down soon these latest Mets rumors connecting JBJ to the Mets may become more of a reality in the coming days.