4 likely MLB trade candidates the Mets should target, 3 they should avoid

San Diego Padres v Chicago White Sox
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The Mets should look at other options not named Shane Bieber

Shane Bieber is no longer the pitcher who won the Cy Young Award in the 2020 season. After a season where he posted an ERA of 1.63 with a surprising K/9 of 14.20, and a WHIP of 0.87, limiting the opposition to one batting average of just .167, his career has taken another direction heading into the last year of his contract.

His level of dominance via strikeouts has been significantly reduced as the seasons have progressed to an unpromising level of 7.52 K/9. Likewise, hitters have raised their batting average thanks to the fact that they have managed to make more contact and put the ball into play, evidenced by a BABIP almost 30 points higher than in 2020.

The most worrying thing in Bieber's arsenal is the velocity of his fastball. After averaging 94.1 mph on his fastball in 2020, for the 2023 season, it was reaching 91.3 mph, lowering its ability to generate swing and miss from a Whiff% of 25.4 in 2020 to a dismal 9.3 this past season.

Additionally, health problems have been latent, especially this season when he lost playing time due to an elbow injury. This has depressed Bieber's value, but even though he doesn't cost like an ace, his stuff is not even at the level of a number two in a rotation.