New York Mets fans spent their Saturday nights bundled up, inside, and in celebration mode at the acquisition of Chris Bassitt from the Oakland Athletics. After months of waiting to see who the team would add to the rotation, the club went out and made a move that the majority of people seem to like.
Howie Rose had his own take on the trade. Prior to the 2000 season, the Mets made another trade for a guy about to hit free agency after the upcoming year. His name was Mike Hampton.
If you didn’t read the tweet in Howie’s voice, you’re not missing baseball enough.
Howie Rose’s take on the Mets trade for Chris Bassitt is a promising one
Everyone who was around for the 2000 season remembers how impressive Mike Hampton was for the club in the regular season and even into the playoffs. Even if the Denver school system did eventually entice him enough in the offseason to leave, his one year in New York was memorable enough.
Hampton went 15-10 with a 3.14 ERA during 33 regular season starts. Despite struggling in his one NLDS start, Hampton bounced back with two victories against the St. Louis Cardinals in the NLCS. He’d toss 16 shutout innings against them and win both games. As Rose already pointed out, he was the series MVP, too.
Bassitt isn’t quite where Hampton was at that stage of his career. Hampton was the Cy Young runner-up in 1999. Bassitt, while a very good pitcher and a guy who has received Cy Young consideration, took a little longer to blossom.
Nonetheless, Howie (why does it feel more comfortable calling broadcasters by their first name?) chose to look at the deal positively rather than worry about what may eventually come from this deal. Sure, it did cost them their second-best pitching prospect and the 2021 Minor League Pitcher of the Year—J.T. Ginn and Adam Oller respectively.
But so much more could be gained. Even if Bassitt ends up as nothing more than a rental, Mets fans have reason for optimism.
Optimistic Mets fans? The oxymoron is taking over Queens.