It’s hard for a general manager to trade a prospect of any kind without upsetting the fanbase. Even when the trades are a clear immediate winner for the team buying the veteran, there can be some doubt. Plenty of bad New York Mets trades have involved a prospect leaving the organization for a veteran. It’s ingrained in the history.
A couple of times, something rare occurred. The Mets traded a prospect who became something pretty special in a deal they outright won.
1) NY Mets traded Preston Wilson in their package for Mike Piazza
There is little doubt the Mets won the Mike Piazza trade. Even if they never did win a championship with him on the roster, it’s an unreasonable claim to say the Florida Marlins won this deal.
To acquire the future Hall of Fame catcher, the Mets sent Geoff Goetz, Ed Yarnall, and outfielder Preston Wilson. Eight games into his MLB career, Wilson was headed to the Marlins.
Wilson showed off his power early on with the Marlins. The center fielder for the club from mid-1998 through the 2002 season, he would go on to mash 104 home runs for the ball club. He had a 30/30/30 season in 2000, finishing with 35 doubles, 31 home runs, and 36 stolen bases.
Wilson’s career was short yet memorable. In 2003, now with the Colorado Rockies, Wilson set numerous career-highs. Included were 36 home runs and a league-leading 141 RBI.
Unfortunately, his last MLB season took place in 2007. He bounced around with several different teams in those final seasons. Somewhat forgotten, he was a member of the 2006 St. Louis Cardinals. Mets fans know why that hurts even if he was a minor contributor for them during that year.