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NY Mets passed on 3 dud free agent deals this offseason

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PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 08: J.T. Realmuto #10 of the Philadelphia Phillies during a game against the Boston Red Sox at Citizens Bank Park on September 8, 2020 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Red Sox won 5-2. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 08: J.T. Realmuto #10 of the Philadelphia Phillies during a game against the Boston Red Sox at Citizens Bank Park on September 8, 2020 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Red Sox won 5-2. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
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Jun 23, 2021; San Diego, California, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Trevor Bauer (27) looks on after giving up a home run to San Diego Padres catcher Victor Caratini (not pictured) during the seventh inning at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Mets passed on Trevor Bauer

With the two of the top three gone…the Mets made a run at Trevor Bauer. And for what reason? I certainly do not know. It really made no sense to me from the get-go. This guy is a real beaut.

The man pitched in nine seasons – one of them being the short season of 2020 – and had one good season other than 2020…ONE GOOD SEASON. In 2018, pitching for the Indians, Bauer went 12-6 with a 2.21 ERA. He threw 175 innings, striking out 221 and walking only 57 batters. However, over the course of the other eight seasons, Bauer was 63-57 with and ERA of 3.82 and in seven of those seasons, he had an ERA of at least 4.18.

And that doesn’t even tell the story about Bauer.

But the man was demanding $40,000,000 a season? How can anyone justify giving that kind of money to that kind of player? I didn’t get it then, and I don’t get it now. The Los Angeles Dodgers gave him a three-year contract for $102 million plus a signing bonus.

Bauer, with an annual salary of $34 million, has pitched to a record of 8-5, 2.59 ERA, with 137 strikeouts and 27 walks in 107 innings pitched, and a WHIP of 1.003.

The Mets, after getting spurned by Bauer, had a fallback in Carlos Carrasco, part of the deal with the Cleveland Indians for Francisco Lindor. But, as it turns out, that didn’t materialize as Carrasco has been shelved since spring training.

The Mets pulled off a move that truly went under the radar when they signed Taijuan Walker to a three-year, $23 million contract. Walker, very quietly (remember that term), has pitched to a record of 7-3, 2.44 ERA, with 87 strikeouts and 27 walks in 85 innings pitched, and a WHIP of 1.012. Average annual salary? $7.6 million…about 1/5 of what Bauer is getting with very comparable stats and a lot fewer headaches.

Walker has to be considered the bargain of the offseason, especially after everything else that came along with Bauer.

Next. Unexpected 5 WAR seasons from Mets players

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So be careful what you wish for. True, you can’t judge any transaction by just a half-season of play. But you can certainly see where getting any of the “big three” this past offseason would not have satisfied anyone, certainly not the way their respective seasons have played out thus far.

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