People with both teams see a trade of one of the New York Mets’ two star starters – especially ace Jacob deGrom – as a major, major long shot. But if the Mets were to discuss deGrom, for instance, with the Yankees, they’d insist on Gleyber Torres.
And guess what: The Yankees wouldn’t trade Torres to the Mets – or anyone else, for that matter.
“I can’t see how we’d do it without Torres,” one Mets person said. (Yankees GM Brian Cashman said he can’t trade Torres since he still has to walk around in the city.)
“We’d have to get something pretty good and someone pretty close,” another Mets person said in answer to a question whether they’d need an impact young star who’s a sure thing (i.e. Torres) or might accept a package of four good-but-not-great-chip guys.
The Mets have understandably put a higher price on deGrom, who leads the NL in ERA and has been one of the top three or four pitchers in the game this year, than they have on the flashier, harder-throwing Noah Syndergaard, who also happens to have an extra year of control – three years as opposed to two. That makes sense. The pitcher who’s been lights out should have more value than the one who has an extra year of control.
“DeGrom is higher,” one person in the know said of the respective price tags.
DeGrom, rightly, just might have the highest price tag of anyone on the market. While Manny Machado is a bigger name, has done more and is younger, he’s also a rental. DeGrom is under control through 2020. Also, unlike Syndergaard, who’s had issues with nagging injuries, and is currently out with a finger ailment, he is extremely reliable.
The Mets have been calling around over the past couple days, and in general admit now that “selling is more likely than buying,” though they are likely to wait a little longer to see where things stand. In their calls, they are also finding interest in Zack Wheeler, which makes sense for teams that want to hold onto their very top prospects. (As Mike Puma of the New York Post suggested, some also think the Mets could just be floating the stars with the intention to deal Wheeler, who’s been hitting 99 mph lately but has yet to reach expectations after being a chapter in GM Sandy Alderson’s book).
In a thin market, he may be prove to be a semi valuable piece, as well. There hasn’t been as much talk about Steve Matz, who’s said to be in “a great place” right now, which apparently means Queens, too.
The more Mets people think about it, the less inclined they may ultimately be to trade one of their big two. The duo helped carry the team into the World Series in 2015, and Mets people still believe there’s a major advantage to having a great one-two punch, especially if you can somehow sneak into the playoffs, even as a wild card.
The more likely scenario has the Mets trading their free-agents-to-be: closer Jeurys Familia, second baseman Asdrubal Cabrera and lefty reliever Jeremy Blevins. But it’s fun to dream, anyway.
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