There’s a growing expectation in the industry that Yoenis Cespedes will indeed get a five-year deal this offseason, writes Mike Puma of the New York Post, which could be problematic for the Mets. Puma cites an industry source in reporting that the Mets could be comfortable in the $100-110MM range over a four-year term, but the team’s comfort level with a fifth year and a total value approaching $130MM is considerably less certain.
Mets GM Sandy Alderson has previously said that he hopes to have resolution on the matter one way or the other by the end of next month’s Winter Meetings, and Puma notes that the Cespedes camp has a similar timeline. Whether the team is able to re-sign Cespedes or not will also have a significant impact on Jay Bruce’s future, Puma writes, as the team could look to trade Bruce if Cespedes returns to Queens. New York is currently listening to offers for Bruce, he continues, though the Mets wouldn’t make any kind of move until they know the outcome of the Cespedes situation.
If Cespedes does sign elsewhere, that doesn’t preclude the Mets from moving Bruce, though, as Puma notes that Alderson and his staff could look at signing either Jose Bautista or Dexter Fowler as a fallback option. If they’re able to do so, then a trade of Bruce would again be back on the table.
It’s not entirely clear which clubs pose the biggest competition for Cespedes at this time. He’s been connected to the likes of the Dodgers, Giants, Yankees and Nationals, though certainly there are other clubs that have corner-outfield vacancies, including the Orioles, Rangers, Mariners, Blue Jays and Phillies, to name a few. And, unlike last season, Cespedes is now the top position player on the board, whereas last year he had to compete with a number of other corner outfielders, including Justin Upton, Jason Heyward and Alex Gordon. While Cespedes does have a qualifying offer attached to him this time around, his status as top dog on the free-agent market (and yet another excellent season added to his track record) should yield a more robust market.
As for Bruce, the 29-year-old (30 in April) has long struck me as a curious fit for the Mets. With Curtis Granderson and Michael Conforto both in the mix, the Mets already have two left-handed-hitting outfielders that should be limited to the corner slots. None of the three lefties handles lefties particularly well, either, and while there’s hope for Conforto to make some strides in that area it’s unlikely that either Bruce or Granderson will make any marked improvement at this point in his career. Shopping him around certainly makes some sense, even if Cespedes doesn’t return. It’s a tough market to do it in, as there are several free-agent alternatives, but Bruce has drawn interest from the Blue Jays in the past and would fit their current desire for a left-handed-hitting outfielder. The Giants, Rangers and Orioles each make varying levels of sense for Bruce as well, although those names are listed here purely in speculative fashion at this point. Bruce is owed $13MM in 2017 and batted a combined .250/.309/.506 with 33 home runs last season.
Cespedes to the Orioles would be huge, tons of homers and fills the corner outfielder we need
Didn’t the Orioles have a five-year offer on the table for him last off-season? Or was it four years?
I think they offered 4/90 to him last year after they signed Davis.
Yankees will move Gardner to make room for Cespedes.
They need pitching more than a bat
Cespedes signs with the BlueJays 5 years $125 mill
Yankees. Then the Mets sign Fowler to a 3 year 51m or 4 year 60mil…then the Mets trade Bruce to Toronto from r M. Upton as their backup OF to their lefties(Conforto, Granderson)
Nothing at all against Cespedes, who deserves the top ranking in this free agent class, but I don’t want the Yankees to touch him. They simply aren’t a Cespedes away from true contention.
He is so perfect for the Mets that they seriously need to break the bank to keep him. Their window is NOW.
I think Cespedes would fit into the blue jays plans really really well. With Edwin, Bautista, Dickey, Cecil, etc coming off the books we should have some money to play with even after signing morales. Cespeds would fill a huge hole we have in the OF and replace Edwins bat at the same time. Maybe on top of that we could sign Lind or Moss? Reunion with Lindy wouldnt be so bad. Im really upset we are wasting money on Smoak but its only about 4m a year so I guess he will provide us some depth. Id be comfortable going 5/125 for Cespedes and then if we are stretching biagini out, we could maybe trade a starter for another OF/Pen arm? We have a lot of holes to fill and I really dont know ownerships budget. I know we at least need 1 lefty in the pen and 2 OFs. I would be okay with platooning Carrera/Upton if we signed Cespedes and a 1b. I want a left handed first basemen though because our lineup is ridiculously right handed heavy.
Orioles should make another offer for him. He’s a right handed bat who could platoon with Kim in left field and has a consistently solid OBP – an area where Baltimore desperately needs improvement.
Teams that give over 100 million for a platoon of is in trouble
$100M for a platoon…phew…
No chance man… Cespedes>Kim
Did you just say cespedes would platoon? You must be smokin some pretty good stuff
Are you kidding me. Pay a guy like Cespedes 25 million to play a platoon with Kim. Kim couldn’t carry Cespedes baseball bag to the park to play a platoon w the best corner outfield on the market.
Platoon? Yo was a borderline MVP candidate. This is flat out disrespectful.
Just trade Bruce no matter what.
I vehemently agree!
Bruce will be tough to move, he is a streaky hitter and below average defensively. Fangraphs projects him as a minus on both offense and defense.
A power left handed hitter for 1 year at 13M would rake in a decent prospect. Especially in the AL. He’s playing for his next contact, so I’d expect an uptick in production.
I’d be ok with the Giants trading for him to man LF for a year as long as the acquisition cost was low, which it almost assuredly would be.
Don’t the orioles already hit a million homeruns? You guys probably have more important needs than Cespedes even though he is a really good player who can fit on any team really. He will stay as a Met they don’t have a right handed corner outfielder and he loves NY. Mets aren’t as cheap as they have been over the last 5-6 years and have the money to get it done.
Sign Cespedes 4yr/$100mm with 5th year vesting options. Than trade conforto, wheeler, Molina, cecchini for trout. Trade Bruce or Granderson for a late inning reliever
Not thinking that ‘haul’ will get it done
propose a trout trade without one of their big arms and no Rosario? lol
Ok, Syndergaard, Molina Cechini. Still have a very strong rotation if everyone is healthy, plus syndergaard is the only one who hasn’t had TJ surgery. Leaves Conforto in RF then trade Granderson and Bruce for prospects and relievers. Still offer cespedes 4yr $100mm with 5th easy vest options
yeah….. that’s nowhere near enough for Trout.
Would take Wheeler/Matz, Molina, Conforto, Rosario, Dom Smith, and Rivera or Flores at the minimum
I keep seeing these “trade for Trout” scenarios from fans of just about every team. Sorry, I just don’t see it happening. Angels would want Conforto, deGrom, Thor, Molina and Rosario. Maybe even more. You can’t trade a player like Trout without getting a ridiculous haul, unless he’s about to hit free agency and you know you can’t sign him.
Beyond that, what late inning reliever is available for Grandy or Bruce? They could maybe – MAYBE – bring back a flawed pitcher like Rosenthal or Cishek.
The angels have nothing but trout. They would be idiots to wait till he’s a free agent and let him walk only gaining a draft pick. They could trade him now get 3 or 4 real pieces.
Miguel Cabrera was traded in his prime for 4 players Maybin and Andrew Miller being the center piece. I think using this as a guideline your estimated value is way off base.
Cabrera was 24 yrs old
Cabrera wasn’t recognized as the best player on the planet then, either. More inportantly, the Marlins traded Cabrera and Willis because they were cheap and wanted to cut payroll. Detroit had to take Willis in the deal. Yeah, D-Train still had some trade value, but he was coming off a poor season and his salary was rising quickly. The Angels aren’t nearly as cash-starved as the Marlins were, and Trout is a major draw. He also has four years left on his contract. He’s not going anywhere.
Mets whole rotation is a question mark healthwise, but it is one of the best if healthy. The whole season depends on their starting pitching more so than most teams.
Cabrera was also not a two time MVP at that age, nor was he the best player in the MLB. Any deal for Trout from the Mets starts with Thor, one of deGrom/Matz, Conforto plus more. There is no deal for Trout where a team is not giving up multiple major league ready/already in the major league players who are young and promising. There is no deal for Trout that is “fair”. The Angels either walk away with a massive haul (and leaving the acquiring team in the same scenario that the Angels were just in, with very little actual talent at the major league level) or the Angels walk away.
it would take a lot less than Wheeler, Molina, Conforto, Rosario, Smith and Flores. Your smoking crack. Cabrera, who was ever bit of the player that Trout was, but probably better, was traded for Dallas Trahern (minors), Burke Badenhop, Frankie De La Cruz, Cameron Maybin, Andrew Miller and Mike Rabelo. …. And that was after he lead the Marlins to the WS. Trout hasn’t done anything the like of Carbera, and Cabera was an infielder. Here is a fair deal for this, whether the Angels want to trade him is another matter… Harvey, Wheeler, Flores, Cecchini, and Lagarus.
Didn’t Cabrera have serious alcohol issues at the time?
I think we can agree you haven’t seen much of Trout, and therefore have no idea regarding his ability or value.
Compare Trout’s 5 years with Cabrera’s 5 with the Marlins: Trout is superior in OPS/OPS . Won RoY and 2 MVP, something Cabrera wouldn’t win until 5
I can’t tell if you’re serious or not. But a few counterpoints: Trout has been better than Cabrera through the early parts of their respective careers, Cabrera didn’t “lead” the Marlins to the World Series but was a 20-year-old rookie and typical starter for the club (though not at all the star of the team), and your proposed trade package for Trout is, pardon any perceived rudeness, terrible. I think the Mets could maybe get AJ Pollock or Ryan Braun with that package, but not Trout.
You’re obviously smoking crack here. Wheeler has NO VALUE THE GUY HAS NOT PITCHED IN TWO YEARS. If Wheeler was so valuable, either someone would have traded for him already or the Mets wouldn’t even dangle him in trades. Being from NY, I expect nothing less than irrational trade ideas from NY sports team fans. But lets be real, half of these offers you are proposing you wouldn’t even take if someone was asking for Thor or deGrom so what makes you think that Trout is worth that? Here’s a simple way to imagine a Trout trade…imagine how much you would want in exchange for Thor/deGrom and triple that. A Trout deal should not be leaving people with the reaction of “Oh, that’s all we had to give up?” The reaction will be more along the lines of “That’s what we gave up?!?”
JT19 – I don’t see the Mets trading Rosario or Thor for anyone, even Trout..
However, Mets have the players to make a sensible deal for Trout without mortgaging the future- and that’s key for the Mets – they won’t mortage the future having now begun to replenish the farm and are middle of the pack now in quality.
Of course any deal depends on whether Mets and Angels see eye to eye on the players in return including to what extent Angels are willing to wait on some lower minors players to develop..
For instance, Mets could offer several major leaguers such as Conforto, Gsellman, TJ Rivera or Wilmer Flores, and minor leaguers such as Lindsey,, Gimenez, Molina,.
Any package would have to be weighed against what other teams offer.. Certainly there are deeper farm systems and/or teams willing to trade a number of their top 5 prospects, including #1..
Gsellman, Lindsey, Gimenez, are in BP’s Mets updated top 10. – #2, 5 and 7..
Molina’s working his way back from TJ surgery but is also very talented. Mets have just added him to the 40 for that reason worried someone would otherwise take him in Rule 5. even though needs more time in minor leagues.
I can’t say whether Mets would be willing to part with one of the very talented pitchers Szapucki. or Dunn. instead of Molina.
There’s a lot of talent in the likes of Conforto, Gsellman, Gimenez, Molina, TJ Rivera, Lindsey. As a Met fan, I would hate to lose Lindsey, Gimenez, Gsellman, in particular… Not thrilled to lose the others but that’s the nature of trades.
TJ Rivera hits at every level including majors.. Led the Pacific Coast League in hitting in 2016.. .
Conforto, 2014 Mets #1 pick, has 30 homer, all star potential.
Gimenez and Lindsey – very raw but very athletic with the talent to be all stars..
Molina – future big league starter or back end reliever when fully recovers from TJ surgery.
Gsellman keeps improving,his ascent not that different than Jacob Degrom,though Degrom has better late life on his fastball.
@LongTimeFan1, I’m not saying they should trade someone like Thor, I do agree that the Mets would be better off keeping him (if that was the asking price and the deal breaker), but its crazy to think any team is getting Trout while giving only prospects (not counting Conforto, who is still relatively young and was essentially their 4th OF). A team’s #2, 5, and 7 prospects are not getting it done unless those prospects were considered to be absolute locks to be studs in the majors (which is no guarantee).
Again, there is no trade for Trout where the acquiring team is able to keep all of their core players. Unless the Angels undersell, the haul it would take for Trout would be tough to stomach. It’s not a haul that you’re going to say “Oh, that’s all we had to give up?” or “I’m not really a fan of giving up Player X, Y and/or Z but I can live with it.” The reaction is going to be “I can’t believe we gave up Players X, Y, Z for Trout.” There is basically no scenario where the acquiring team keeps their core players, is significantly better than pre-trade, and win the trade (outside of the fact that they just acquired Mike Trout).
Were you dropped on your head many times as an infant?
The proposed Trout trade is getting the most heat here, and rightfully so. It’s however also worth noting that Granderson/Bruce at this point in their career and certainly in this market may fetch a late inning reliever, but not one of any particular quality.
I agree, which is why I suggested flawed relievers like Cishek and Rosenthal as possible targets. Mets may be better off signing a guy like Feliz unless they just want to cut Bruce’s salary and roster spot.
The issue is that no player wants to take a pay cut. The Mets gave him $27.5 million last year. I think his final deal may be in the 5-year, $140M range. And I think the Mets should do it.
Why is Baltimore so fixated on power hitters? They need a better pitching rotation to get past the ALCS.
I think the mets can get more than a late inning pitcher for bruce
Why do you say that? He only has one year left, defense and OBP are poor, and he was very bad after being traded to the Mets. Have you seen the cost of late inning RP lately?
Give ces 4/115 is a fair deal. If he wants the extra year, go 5/140. Get it done! Averages 28 a year. But structure it so u have 32, 30, 28, 26, 24 per year or something. That way his goes down while Noah and degrom go up to compensate a little. But 4/115 is theoretically a 5/142.5 deal if u count last year to it too. Sorry. Nerding out here lol. They just need to get him. Biggest offseason in years for Mets. If they get their staff healthy and have cespedes they can make it back to serious October…Bruce can get you a solid bullpen arm and or a top prospect or two….trout talk, although would be amazing, I don’t see how the angels could deal him. If they did, my opinion is a trout for (one of) Harvey/wheeler, Rosario, Flores, conforto is more than enough to start a discussion. All cheap, young, top prospect, and risk.
Has there ever been a player like Trout at this point in his career traded before ??? I can’t recall someone on his level being moved. Maybe Griffey but he was older than Trout at the time. So that being said why would the Angels move him. There is no way they could get equal value cause no team could afford equal value. I wish people would stop with the scenarios. The Angels are able to sign him to any contract he wants so they ride it out til his last season before he becomes a free agent and offer him the contract extension if he refuses than you put him on the block and you take the best possible deal.
you mean like Babe Ruth? Miguel Cabrera?
Babe Ruth was traded for cash because Tom Yawkey was broke. He was also a pitcher at the time.
Cabrera was young and about to get really expensive and the Marlins were pretty cheap at that time. Plus, the 2007 Marlins, even with Cabrera, weren’t any good.
So those are different situations, of course. No player in history except Ty Cobb has been as valuable as Trout over the first five years of his career so there’s no precedent for what his trade value might be. Plus, he’s signed through 2021 to a reasonable contract. He’s not going to be traded unless some team like Boston emptied the entire prospect vault.
They were different players than Trout.
The sale of Ruth was so long ago that it has no bearing at all on modern sports management. Cabrera was a truly great young hitter, but has never had anything close to Trout’s all around game. Also, the Marlins are notoriously cheap and money had a lot to do with the deal. Angels don’t have that problem. A better comparison would be the Rangers trading A-Rod after his MVP in 2003. However, his contract at the time was absolutely monsterous, leading to the deal with New York. Trout is signed for a massive amount of money for the next four years, but again the Angels can afford him.
Cespedes will resign with mets for a 5 years max deal with a club option on 5th year and a low buy out. Although I would love to get Trout. The Angels will never trade him and if they did they would want your kids too. I would keep Bruce because I just think he had a hard time adjusting after being on 1 team his whole life. I think he will bounce back. The pressure of having to preform immediately just got to him and after struggling early it just got too big to overcome. If they decided to move him, I would package him with other players to get something significant.
5/135M for Cespedes. Considering the lack of free agent talent, he’ll get it from someone.
Cespedes sells tickets. Jay Bruce does not. Trout sells tickets. Dexter Fowler sells less tickets than Jim Fowler. Follow the revenue.
Why does nobody mention the Marlins as a landing spot for Cespedes? Yelich moves to center and Big G in right. Plus more jersey sales to Cubans that you can imagine.
Fowler just won the world series. Why would he go to a team that has one player that is gonna leave in 3 years.
I can’t see cespedes going to Baltimore. They gave Chris Davis way too much money. He’ll go to the Jankees for 5/120. Mets trade Bruce to some AL team. He can’t field he’ll be a DH it’ll be for cash and PTBNL. Blue Jays lose both Joey Bats and EE. Which if it happens is hilarious and their offense is depleted. Joey Bats to Seattle or Rangers. 2/45 EE Goes to where ever Bats doesn’t sign. Seattle or Texas. Joey Votto to the Yankees for Castro and cash.
Bad contract for great contract. Maybe a minor league player goes to the Reds as well. Which is not saying much. Yankees have a awful farm with the exception of Glayber Torres
The Yankees actually have one of the top three farm systems in the game – and some even say they are #1, thanks to their very impressive depth. The kid they acquired for Pazos last week was #14 in the Mariners system prior to the trade, using mlb.com’s rankings. Guess where he is within the Yankees system? Not even ranked in the Top 30. Pazos, who wasn’t even sniffing the Top 30 in the Yankees’ system, instantly slotted in as the Mariners’ #27 prospect.
Torres isn’t considered their top gun – Frazier is.
The Trout proposals here are quite funny. The Yankees can offer the Angels Sanchez and their top four or five prospects and the Angels may still hang up the phone. Trout is on a historical climb – if he stays healthy, he can seriously turn himself into one of the top players to ever put on a uniform. They aren’t going to put him on the market, but if they did, the trade proposals would be the most insane you have ever seen in your lifetime.