Lack of lefties
This past season, southpaw Aaron Loup was the Mets best reliever – by far. A quiet signing last off-season, Loup pitched in 56.2 innings, recording a career-best 0.95ERA and a WHIP of 0.935. However, Loup went on to leave Queens for the Los Angeles Angels on a two-year deal in free agency.
Thus, leaving the Mets with a glaring need for lefty relievers. Currently, the team has three on the roster in David Peterson, Joey Lucchesi, and Thomas Szapucki. Except, all are starters before relievers, with the latter two coming off season-ending surgeries that leave their Opening Day status in question.
That being said, the Mets desperately need to add some left-handed relievers once the lockout concludes. Maybe they look into re-signing Brad Hand, who dealt a sub-three ERA in 13.1 innings down the stretch. He would also provide an option should Diaz flop, having been a past All-Star closer with Cleveland and San Diego.
Chances are Owner Steve Cohen will dive back into his checkbook and scour what remains of the free agent market. Veterans like Andrew Chafin, Tony Watson, Jake Diekman, or a reunion with Chasen Shreve are solid options to fix this issue.
Either way, the fact the Mets do not have an established left-handed reliever currently on the active roster is a major problem. Even with the minimum three-batter rule, southpaws remain an integral part of any bullpen’s success. If the Mets wish to be legitimate threats for the World Series, adding an efficient lefty to the roster is an absolute must once the lockout ends.