Let’s get right to the heart of things by checking out what one local reporter (New York Post) had to say about this move by the Mets:
This trade means the #mets are all in to win now. That means not trading Syndergaard and not penny-pinching the rest of offseason. Better be more big moves to come otherwise this is a really bad move.— Zach Braziller (@NYPost_Brazille) November 30, 2018
I don’t know Braziller, but I wholeheartedly agree. All of this chatter about potentially seeing Noah Syndergaard on the move doesn’t jive with the Mets being in “win now” mode. So hopefully this trade means the Mets are “all in” and that we can expect them to hold Thor (and to add more pieces). As for those pieces, here was one thought:
Source: #Mets officials optimistic they have prospect depth/payroll flexibility to pursue a trade with #Indians for catcher Yan Gomes even if Cano/Diaz deal is completed, as expected. @MLB @MLBNetwork— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) November 30, 2018
Unfortunately for the Mets, the Washington Nationals traded for Yan Gomes this past Friday. Sidenote, this effectively torpedoes the value of Kurt Suzuki—but I digress.
The Mariners receive...
The centerpiece is outfielder Jarred Kelenic, who was the Mets’ top pick from last year. Kelenic was the sixth overall pick in last summer’s draft, to be exact. Long-term, he is viewed as a toolsy corner outfield type. He may be the coveted “five-tool” player. But if he doesn’t hit (literally) then the Mariners probably lose this trade.
Justin Dunn was the Mets’ No. 19 overall pick in the 2016 MLB Draft. He is a 22-year-old right-hander who spent time between Single-A and Double-A this past season. In 24 starts Dunn posted an 8-8 record, 3.59 ERA, and 1.33 WHIP. He struck out 156 batters in 135 1⁄3 innings. He has a fastball, slider, and a changeup.
Major leaguers Anthony Swarzak (RHP) and Jay Bruce (1B, OF) are also headed to Seattle. Each could reclaim some value, though Bruce is probably more appealing in fantasy circles. But not overly appealing. Lastly, Gerson Bautista (RHP) is a hard-throwing relief pitcher, but that’s about all you can say about him to this point.
The Mets receive...
The Mets receive Robinson Cano (2B) and Edwin Diaz (RHP). Diaz is a 24-year-old flamethrower who amassed 57 saves in 2018. He is a fastball/slider guy who works around 97 mph but can touch 100 mph. Opponents mustered a .188 BAA on his heater in 2018, but they were further devastated by his slider, with a .121 BAA that pitch. He is undoubtedly the centerpiece of this deal. That’s the good news for Mets fans. The other good news is...
Robinson Cano is still good. Really. Even with last year’s suspension he still slashed .303/.374/.471 and popped 10 home runs. His 41.5% hard contact rate was the best of his entire career, and his 11.3% soft contact rate was also the best (read: lowest) it has ever been. Sure, he got popped for PEDs and maybe it’s reasonable to expect a little bit of regression, but Cano still makes a ton of contact and has some pop. And don’t sleep on ‘em—the Mets lineup is actually looking like a pretty decent place for a middle-of-the-order type in 2019. Brandon Nimmo (.404 OBP) and Jeff McNeil (.381 OBP) know how to get on base, at least. And Cano projects as the No. 3 hitter in this lineup currently. Color me intrigued and on the side of “buying” Cano in 2019.
As for the money changing hands, that doesn’t affect us for fantasy purposes so generally I choose not to wade into those waters. Especially the “winner” and “loser” of each trade. But if you’re telling me that whether the Mariners win or lose this trade is based off of Jarred Kelenic’s future MLB production, then I think I’ll side with the Mets for landing a known keystone commodity (that can still rake) and an elite, young closer. Maybe that’s just me, and that’s okay. How about you guys? Who wins?