It didn’t happen until the wee hours of December 6, 2023, but Juan Soto eventually found his way to the New York Yankees. New York Mets fans were left playing with their thumbs trying to explain away how the Yankees recouped their title as the Evilest Empire of all.
Optimistic Mets fans believe this is only temporary. The Yankees are the 711 pit stop for Soto who’ll eventually get an offer he can’t refuse from Steve Cohen next offseason. As we’ve seen plenty in the past, players of his caliber can sometimes end up with an extension before even hitting the open market.
If the world really does work in mysterious ways, the date of this trade does have an ironic link. It was on December 6, 2013, when Curtis Granderson left the Yankees in free agency for the Mets.
A glitch in the matrix for the Mets or a meaningless coincidence for the Juan Soto trade?
Of all the guys who’ve played for the Mets and Yankees, none have really done well with one team and immediately gone to the other and excelled. There’s often at least one team in between. Not Granderson. After four years in the Bronx, he signed up for four more in Queens.
Granderson was a much different player for the Yankees than he was for the Mets. He clobbered 40+ home runs twice and drove in 100+ in each of those seasons. On the Mets, he found himself leading off frequently with many of those Yankee Stadium home runs turning into Citi Field doubles.
Soto’s on a whole different level than Granderson. The situation itself differs with Soto being a newcomer to the Yankees and Granderson having already dug in his heels before leaving for the Mets.
Still, the shared date of Granderson signing with the Mets and the Soto trade isn’t lost on any of us trying to find a glitch in the matrix to secure the guarantee of Soto eventually changing boroughs. In actuality, there was probably a less than one in thirty chance of it happening anyway. December tends to be the most active month of the offseason with the end-of-month holidays including a temporary pause on many of the moves.
We’re reaching to think the date truly has any significance. It could have happened on December 7 or the rare February 29. Mets fans will have to hope the baseball gods have a sense of humor and for a change, one that doesn’t enjoy seeing the orange and blue get clunked in the head.