The Mets can talk about finishing the season on a high. They have won 10 of 16 after taking a series against the Atlanta Braves with a 4-1 victory Thursday night at Citi Field. They have been decent since July.
With a sweep of the Miami Marlins this weekend at Citi Field, the Mets will finish the season at 78-84. It would be something after an awful May and June that doomed the team’s season. Everyone thought the Mets would lose 90 or more games to finish the season with an awful lineup and a struggling bullpen.
Still, it was another losing season no matter how much the Mets want to make a big deal about the way they played the last two months. It’s two years of no playoffs for this championship-starved franchise. This team was unwatchable for most of the season, even when National League Cy Young Award favorite Jacob deGrom was starting.
So the foundation is broken, and it needs fixing for the Mets to get back on track. The Wilpons can’t be delusional to think the Mets can be a playoff team with the same roster when they haven’t been in two years. Their opportunity of winning a championship was over after they lost to the Kansas City Royals in the World Series few years ago.
Whoever the Mets hire as the general manager must have a mandate to break this roster up. No one should be untouchable, not even deGrom. The farm system is not good enough, and this team has so many gaping holes on the roster such as outfielder, catcher and first baseman. It would make more sense to reboot than keep more of the same.
If the Mets hire a general manager that will focus on analytics, he would be compelled to break up the roster than keep it more of the same. He would like to build a team in the image of his, which is being more athletic, younger and smarter. He would want this team to focus more on speed.
Whatever it is, the new general manager has to do something. The Mets need to make trades for the sake of making one. This roster isn’t cutting it. There was nothing to remember this season, and there was nothing worth liking.
Trading deGrom should be an option unless the Mets are ready to give him an extension this offseason. There’s no point keeping him with his current contract. He has showed he is ready for a raise after pitching well for four seasons. If he wins the NL Cy Young, that should be enough for him to make his point for a raise.
It wouldn’t be good optics for the Mets to keep their ace while he is being underpaid for what he has offered for this team. He has earned the right to be rewarded. Either the Mets show their appreciation for him now or let him get his extension from another club. They shouldn’t have to wait and see what he will do the next two years when he already showed them what he can do.
Trading deGrom wouldn’t be the worst thing to do. They haven’t won with him, and they can be bad without him. If trading him can accelerate the rebuilding process, it would be a smart thing to do. No one is saying they should accept 50 cents on the dollar, but if a team is ready to give up their best young players for him, it’s hard to say no.
Teams can win championships or turn it around by making a franchise trade. This is as good as it gets for the Mets. deGrom’s value will never be higher, so the Mets new general manager should pounce at this opportunity before it’s too late.
It could be blasphemy to trade their star pitcher, but it wouldn’t be the death of the franchise. The Mets have to do something. The new general manager should build the team the way he sees it. After all, he is being hired to resuscitate a dead franchise.
Trading Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler should be a priority. As good as those two are, it’s hard to tell if they can make 26 starts per season since they are injury-prone. Plus, they are so inconsistent. They will vow, but they will frustrate, so what use are they? With Wheeler being arbitration eligible this season and then being a free agent next season, it would make sense to trade him while his value is high. It’s not like the Mets won with those two anyway.
It wouldn’t be far-fetched to trade Michael Conforto. It’s hard to believe he will ever reach his potential as a Met.
The Mets have pieces to trade. What they need is a franchise-changing trade that can change their hopes for a better tomorrow because today stinks.
They can go ahead and stay the course with this roster for one more try. They can cite injuries or whatever circumstances hurt the Mets the last few seasons. But by doing that, they are delaying the inevitable while being in denial.
These last two seasons should reek of a trade that has to be made.
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