While the Mets don’t necessarily need an extra arm in the bullpen, the Cubs currently have the top closer in baseball in a year where they are likely going to miss the playoffs, and if Craig Kimbrel is on the market, New York should jump at the chance to acquire him.
Overall, the Mets bullpen’s combine ERA sits at 3.92, respectably below the league’s average bullpen ERA of 4.13.
New York’s current closer Edwin Diaz has put together a fine season to this point, posting a 2.86 ERA over 34.2 innings with 48 strikeouts, converting 19 of 20 save opportunities.
However, while Diaz has been great, Kimbrel has been performing at an “Elite” level. After struggling the last two season, Kimbrel is putting together possibly the best season of his career, which is certainly saying something seeing as he is an 8-time All-Star.
Through the first half of 2021, Kimbrel has posted a 0.57 ERA over 31.2 innings with 54 strike outs, converting 20 of 22 save opportunities. As its stands, Kimbrel’s ERA is lower than all other qualified relievers.
Any team with post-season aspirations knows it needs good pitching to make it to the World Series, and if the Cubs are scouting the Mets as a trade candidate, then in my opinion, New York should go “all in” and go after arguably the best closer in the game.
Kimbrel does have a team option in his contract for the 2022 season worth $16 million, so the Cubs can still retain him for next year if they don’t trade him by this deadline, meaning they can negotiate a higher asking price.
While relief pitching isn’t at the top of the Mets needs at the trade deadline, Craig Kimbrel’s talents, along with the likes of Diaz, Seth Lugo, Trevor May, and Aaron Loup would turn their bullpen into arguably the most dangerous in baseball.
Kimbrel may be a tough get and command a high price tag, but for the caliber of player that he is, he should be well worth the Mets front office inquiring about in any negotiation with Chicago.
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Which of these players would you like to see the Mets trade for?