Super Mets bullpen could be a goal for next winter’s MLB Hot Stove
By Tim Boyle
The New York Mets might not have much to do next winter outside of re-signing a few of their free agents. I don’t think we can realistically expect them to extend the big four prior to the end of the 2021 season. At best, they lock up Francisco Lindor and maybe strike a deal with Michael Conforto.
Even if the Mets do head into next offseason with several players trekking toward free agency, the club’s focus outside of the organization could go toward building a super bullpen.
Finding relief help is never easy. After ensuring they can keep Francisco Lindor, Michael Conforto, Noah Syndergaard, and possibly even Marcus Stroman around, all other resources should go toward replenishing their bullpen.
Building a “super” Mets bullpen isn’t even that expensive compared to other goals a team could have
I know money is no object to Steve Cohen, but he does have a budget and there is a limit on how much he’d spend on players. If this wasn’t the case, the Mets would have won every offseason bidding war this past winter.
It’s too soon to start listing some potential bullpen targets for the Mets. With relievers, you never know what year they’re going to go from a stud to a dud or vice versa.
Regardless of who the targets become, the Mets don’t need to break the bank to build what could be deemed a super bullpen.
The best relievers out there don’t cost more than $10-12 million per season. Typically, those are the closer salaries, too. Assuming all goes well with Edwin Diaz, the Mets won’t have to sign more than one guy to such a lucrative contract. However, if an eight-figure contract is what it takes to land the best free agent reliever out there, they should absolutely do it. Just don’t go paying that kind of money to someone like Jeurys Familia.
Along with the free agent possibilities, let’s not ignore the trades. Relievers are routinely traded. This is especially true around the trade deadline.
Conceivably, the Mets could get a jump start on this in the summer of 2020. I have little doubt the team will be in the hunt for some bullpen upgrades this July. A deal for a guy on a non-expiring contract could help load them up for the following season as well.
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We all expect the Mets to go to the brink of the luxury tax, possibly even exceeding it as needed. The longer it takes for them to win a World Series, the likelier it is we see Cohen and company accept they’re going to have to spend a little more.