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NY Mets: 3 starting pitcher trade candidates in the American League

CLEVELAND, OHIO - JUNE 12: Yusei Kikuchi #18 of the Seattle Mariners delivers a pitch in the first inning during their game against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on June 12, 2021 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OHIO - JUNE 12: Yusei Kikuchi #18 of the Seattle Mariners delivers a pitch in the first inning during their game against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on June 12, 2021 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)
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Jun 12, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Yusei Kikuchi (18) stretches during the seventh inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

NY Mets Trade Candidate: Yusei Kikuchi

Yusei Kikuchi is a Japanese southpaw putting up career best numbers in 2021 pitching for the Seattle Mariners. Coming into 2021, he had a 5.38 ERA in the Majors in his first two years with Seattle. This season has been a different story, as Kikuchi has been one of their best pitchers in the rotation – posting a 3.66 ERA in 12 starts with a K to BB ratio of 3. However similar to the Angels, the Mariners are nine games back of first place in the American League west and may want to start building for next season.

If the Mets are to land the southpaw in a trade, it may cost them more than what it would to acquire Alex Cobb. However Kikuchi’s contract is team friendly in that it allows whichever team that he plays for the right to exercise their option to bring him back or release him if he doesn’t perform to their expectations. That team will have this option all the way to the year 2025. So the Mets would not be burdened into anything long term or guaranteed.

For me personally, I think Kikuchi would be the most ideal pick up out of the three pitchers in this article. He has shown the ability to put together many quality starts consecutively and has the ability to work both sides of the plate very well. Also he is just 30 years old and should have a few more good years left in him at a reasonable salary after this season.

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