Steve Cohen’s seemingly endless wealth puts the New York Mets in a position where they can buy or sell any player. Although they have yet to take on the brunt of a salary dump deal, the possibility of it each offseason is likely.
Most teams in baseball have at least one contract on the books they feel is a bit too burdensome on the payroll. Even if the player is meeting the expectations of the deal, getting out from under the contract might be a mission either to save some money or to open up the door for other possibilities.
Because of Cohen’s reputation and powerful wallet, it’s these three high-priced trade candidates we should expect making over $20 million in 2024 to enter the rumor mill.
1) Chris Sale
The possibility of a Mets trade for Chris Sale was already floated out there by Connor & Joe of the Mets Pod.
It’s not so outrageous. Prior to 2023, there were thoughts of other teams looking at Sale as a possible trade addition. Sale did manage to make 20 starts last year and while it came with just a 6-5 record and 4.30 ERA, he remains an effective strikeout pitcher and his 11.1 strikeouts per 9 is the best in MLB history.
Sale hasn’t been his usual brilliant self for his entire 30s. He struggled in 2019 with the Boston Red Sox, missed all of 2020, and combined to make only 11 starts from 2021-2022 but did look good. Finally a little healthier in 2023, it was more of a mixed review from him. Should the Mets make him a target if the Red Sox eat a large portion of the money and/or they are able to acquire a prospect in what is essentially a salary dump?
I’d stay away simply because he hasn’t shown that he is anything more than a broken down ace. Maybe the taste of 2023 hasn’t rubbed off yet where we saw a much lesser version of Max Scherzer on the mound and a good yet not so durable Justin Verlander.
A trade for Sale only works if the Mets do get some weapons for their farm system. It would be a bad move on Boston’s part, though. You’ve eaten enough money. Wait one more year. Tough out the pain a little longer.