It is fun to speculate Andre Ethier and Carlos Gonzalez in the Mets’ outfield. I would also take Josh Willingham, but pass on Carl Crawford and Alfonso Soriano. It would take a lot in terms of prospects and cash down the line to make a run at Giancarlo Stanton.
These names have been suggested as outfield possibilities for the Mets, but of all of them, only Willingham in terms of salary and talent they would surrender, makes the most immediate sense.
The Mets claim to have the resources, but we’ve heard that refrain before. Don’t tell us who is out there; tell us when you sign somebody. Until then, it is all just running in place. I want the bird in hand.
Either and Gonzalez represent an exorbitant cost in terms of salary and prospects if they trade, or just salary if they wait for the free-agent market.
They would have to wait several years for Stanton to become available on the free-agent market, and quite frankly they would be diving into the deep end of the pool if they went after him now. But, that might be their only chance because in an open market, the Mets won’t be able to compete.
However, I don’t think the Mets would be willing – or daring enough – to go in that direction.
Crawford and Soriano would just cost too much money for little production. If they went in that direction, they might as well have kept Jason Bay.
Every time I read these names, also mentioned are Zack Wheeler and Travis d’Arnaud. But, the Mets aren’t dealing them, although there is no guarantee of their stardom.
I might be willing to deal d’Arnaud because they have Kevin Plawecki, who is 22, in the minors. He’s in Single-A and still a few years away, but having John Buck means they could take the risk with d’Arnaud if it’s the right deal.
As far as Wheeler goes, he’s wild in Triple-A and not close to being ready. The Mets have seen wildness in Mike Pelfrey and Oliver Perez, so they don’t need another scatter arm. Wheeler also has blister issues, so it would be premature to give up on him now, because that might be the cause of his problems.
It would likely take both Wheeler and d’Arnaud for Stanton. The Marlins might be willing to trade in the division, but are the Mets willing to face Wheeler and d’Arnaud 18 times a year?
I’m inclined to guess not, so the path with them would be to see what develops.
The Mets are making an investment in the future, so it’s ridiculous to change course and go back to the days when they chased the big names.
They chased Mo Vaughn and Roberto Alomar when they were in the twilight of their careers. They chased Carlos Beltran, Tom Glavine, Pedro Martinez and Carlos Delgado, but didn’t have the complimentary pieces. They were unlucky with Bay and Johan Santana. They were lucky not to get Alex Rodriguez.
In all cases, the timing wasn’t there. I don’t think it is there with Stanton. The Mets have hit the bottom and are now showing signs of growth. There’s still a lot of work to do, but there will be even more if they reverse course now and guess wrong.
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