Mets best trade option is still Kris Bryant and not just for third base
By Tim Boyle
Trade deadline talk is when things get really fun around Major League Baseball. Everyone thinks they know exactly what a team needs and the price to get it. It’s my personal favorite thing to write about with the New York Mets. Already assuming they’ll be buyers, I know this July is going to be a lot of fun.
The 2021 team has been winning games in somewhat unconventional ways. They aren’t outslugging their opponents as many of us expected. This team has managed to stay competitive because of some good-old-fashioned pitching both from the starters and relievers. Just enough hitting at times has helped bail them out from all of the runners they’ve left in scoring position.
They will inevitably require some upgrades along the way. If there’s one big bat they should look to add, it’s a familiar name we heard about plenty during the winter. It’s Kris Bryant.
Kris Bryant remains the ideal big bat for the Mets to add at the trade deadline and not just for his work as a third baseman
During the offseason, the thought was the Mets would look to make a trade for Chicago Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant to upgrade the position over J.D. Davis. When healthy this season, Davis has been the team’s best hitter. Would it make sense to trade him away for a few months of Bryant?
The Mets could always move Davis to the bench or another position and still add Bryant. I hate to see them eliminate talent for the sake of upgrading at some spots.
Fortunately, Bryant is more than a third baseman. This year alone, he has already also played all three outfield positions (as a starter) and even seen action at first base. Perhaps Bryant could do something similar with the Mets.
The Mets could plug Kris Bryant in at a variety of positions
Bryant isn’t some type of super-utility player. He is far from a great defender. Even at his primary position of third base, he’s just all right.
Bryant could, however, serve as a right-handed-hitting option in the outfield. When all three of the usual outfielders are healthy, the Mets have a trio of lefties.
Considering Dominic Smith’s early slump in 2021, it could benefit the Mets to look at players who can do more than play just one spot. Smith’s future probably doesn’t have him staying in left field. Ideally, he moves to first base next year with the return of the DH to the National League. With this still in question, so is his status with the Mets.
A 2021 trade for Bryant doesn’t exactly affect too many current players. The Mets can cram him onto the roster and push someone else to the bench on a nightly basis to put together the best lineup possible. I know most trades involving Bryant could cost the club someone like Davis or Smith. If it doesn’t, this just gives the Mets even more depth to play with.
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Following a down year in 2020, Bryant has looked more like his MVP-caliber self in the early part of 2021. A trade from Chicago feels inevitable and the Mets should remain a top destination.