The Cleveland Guardians
While the Cleveland Indians will be making a big transition this off-season in renaming its organization to the Guardians, they are a team that surely will look to make some improvements on the field as well.
Cleveland finished last season with a record of 80-82, second place in the AL Central. However, they are a better team than their record indicates, and with a few upgrades in key positions, chiefly in terms of first basemen, they could very well be contenders in 2022.
For the 2021 season, Cleveland ranked dead last in the MLB in both batting average and on-base percentage, with the position hitting barely above the Mendoza Line for the year with a collective .207 average with a .275 OBP.
Dominic Smith would be a welcome improvement in terms of both average and on-base percentage, as well as solid defense at first base, and could be just what they need to get back on track.
Cleveland could opt to sign one of the big free agents on the open markets such as Freddie Freeman or Anthony Rizzo, but Smith would be a much less costly option in terms of salary and would still be under team control for 3 years, making him a very attractive alternative.
As for what the Mets could look for in return, Cleveland has the 13th ranked farm system in the MLB, and like the Pirates, they too have a surplus of pitching prospects, which the Mets are in desperate need of.
The Mets could also look to make the swap for a member of Cleveland’s major league roster, but either way, Dominic Smith could easily fill the position that last year was the Indians’ Achilles Heel, and they have a multitude of players that could help the Mets’ efforts heading into 2022.