New York Mets Trade Target Number 2: Jose Leclerc
Like the last Mets' trade option, this next option comes from a team that is unlikely to compete this year. The Texas Rangers finished 42 games under .500 last year, and while they made two huge signings of Corey Seager and Marcus Semien this offseason, they still reside in the AL West which featured three teams who had at least 86 wins last season, as well as the Angels who were missing Mike Trout and Anthony Rendon for much of the season.
While they still may attempt to be competitive this season, trading Jose Leclerc makes a lot of sense for the team. Leclerc had the looks of becoming a dominant closer in 2018, which led the team to sign him to a four-year extension with two club options following that season. However, he wasn't the same pitcher in 2019, and then came the pandemic and Tommy John Surgery for Leclerc. Still, for his career, Leclerc has a 3.19 ERA, 263 strikeouts, and 29 saves in 189 innings, per Baseball-Reference.
Despite having not pitched much since 2019, Leclerc is still only 28 with a lot of talent and an extremely club-friendly contract. According to Spotrac.com, Leclerc is only due $4.75 million this season, and his options for the next two years are $6 million and $6.25 million, which are all well below market value if he proves he still has anything left in the tank.
Combine his immense upside with the fact that he can be controlled at a club-friendly number for the next three years, and it is easy to see why Leclerc could be extremely appealing for the Mets. If they can find a way to get him for the right price they should absolutely jump at that opportunity.