Six straight wins. Four straight losses. Three more victories. It’s an unusual pattern for the New York Mets this month. They exposed the Arizona Diamondbacks. Gave hope to the San Diego Padres. Assured the Chicago White Sox they are one of the worst teams in baseball. In search of their own trade deadline identity, the worst thing the Mets can do is nothing at all.
The recent success, largely because of the strength of Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander in their last two starts, has many of us questioning if the Mets will actually try to compete. This approaching trade deadline can have buyers, sellers, or the worst-case scenario for the Mets, observers.
Standing pat is the worst thing the NY Mets can do at the trade deadline
The Mets starting rotation may be turning around. Or we’re in store for a brutal outing. You never know with this team.
The offense has been equally as unpredictable. Francisco Alvarez is red hot and yet we’ve seen him go cold over a lengthy period of time. Many of the Mets veterans are in months-long slumps which offer little hope of a turnaround.
An argument in favor of selling is only slightly better than one to buy. The NL Wild Card has opened up with several teams falling. The Mets need to be an elite ball club for the remainder of the year to take advantage of it. They are far from it as currently constructed.
One particular area of the roster will prevent them from making it to the postseason if they did nothing at all. The bullpen isn’t good enough and unless the Mets buy in this area and heavily, there isn’t any chance of them doing anything special.
It wouldn’t be the worst thing if the Mets decided to avoid selling because none of their trade pieces would fetch a particularly awesome haul. David Robertson is their best trade chip, but even he wouldn’t offer the club any guaranteed high-profile prospects. Tommy Pham and his surprisingly smoking bat, which has cooled off a bit, would land the Mets even less.
A Mets sale this summer wouldn’t be much better than what we saw in 2017. Out of all those trades, Drew Smith was the only impactful player they acquired. His poor performance in 2023 is one coming out of the bullpen forcing the Mets into the current tug-of-war.
The bold move would be to buy at this year’s trade deadline. The practical one is to sell what they can. Somewhere in the middle is keeping the roster intact and adding bullpen pieces. None of the scenarios are particularly appealing. The worst of them all is to run out the clock and do nothing at all.