3) Threat to sign Jacob deGrom away this offseason: Houston Astros
The Astros could give deGrom a lot of what he wants, just like the Rangers. They're in Texas fairly close to his home in Florida. Also, the Astros are a team that competes every season and don't seem to be slowing down.
The Astros have another older ace, Justin Verlander, who just missed two seasons due to injury and came back without skipping a beat. Verlander also has an opt-out but it'd be pretty shocking to see Houston let him go.
The Astros can sign both of them and form an absurd rotation along with Framber Valdez and Lance McCullers Jr.
Is that likely? I have no idea. I think the Rangers might be a little bit more willing to spend what it takes to get deGrom, but you never know.
With deGrom, you'd have to assume the Astros would become the favorites to win it all. They're already the favorites to win the AL Pennant this season, adding deGrom to this team would be ridiculous.
deGrom would be in a smaller market which might be what he wants with a chance to win every single year in an organization that seems to do wonders with their pitching, especially with veteran arms. Verlander looked like he was in decline before ending up in Houston. The Astros were able to squeeze out a couple of solid seasons from Zack Greinke as well.
I don't think the Astros are a likely spot for deGrom, but there's a lot there to attract him.
I'd be shocked if the Mets let him walk at all, and hope he stays just like the last time he approached free agency.