3) NY Mets rumors: Ryan Clifford is expendable in a Juan Soto trade
The last of the Mets prospects mentioned is Ryan Clifford. The other prospect acquired from the Astros for Verlander, he’s a first baseman/corner outfielder with some awesome power. He hit 24 home runs this past year in his age 19 season. Although his .188/.307/.376 slash line in 32 games for the Brooklyn Cyclones was underwhelming, he did pummel 6 balls over the outfield wall.
As Rotman notes, Clifford isn’t quite headliner-worthy enough for the Padres. This doesn’t necessarily mean a trade for Soto would require him plus Gilbert or Williams. The Mets have some youth on the MLB roster already.
Would adding in Brett Baty, Mark Vientos, Ronny Mauricio, or dare we say, Francisco Alvarez sweeten the pot? Obviously not a single one of these prospects would be enough to acquire Soto. Players such as Baty and Vientos would run into the same problem with the Padres as they have with the Mets. Where do they even play?
At least one outfielder and probably some pitching would appease the Padres. It can’t be slop either. Considering their top prospect, Ethan Salas, is a catcher, how interested would they be in Parada anyway?
The most fascinating of trade packages to possibly put together would once again pair Gilbert with Clifford plus add in a little something else. To leverage paying for Verlander’s contract to turn it into two pieces then deal for Soto is either genius or moronic.