The Mets have given every indication that they’ll try to rebound back into contention in 2018. That effort will likely include the pursuit of at least one veteran reliever, Marc Carig of Newsday reports.
New York’s front office has had plenty of time to look ahead to the winter to come. Indeed, as Carig notes, many of the club’s summer trades not only shed salaries of short-term veterans, but installed young relief arms that could make near-term impacts at the MLB level. While those additions will bolster the depth, though, none of the new hurlers has much in the way of MLB experience.
It’ll be interesting to see just how the Mets approach the offseason. Improving the relief corps does seem to offer some hope of boosting the club’s chances without making massive, long-term commitments. Of course, that’s also the case for quite a few other organizations. Presumably, the team won’t be looking at the top-tier closers on the market, but it’s possible to imagine pursuit of just about any other reliever. As usual, there are quite a few available, including high-performing late-inning arms like recent Met Addison Reed as well as Brandon Kintzler, Juan Nicasio, Anthony Swarzak, Pat Neshek, and a host of others.
Notably, the Mets will also be looking to fill needs in other areas. Priorities may include buttressing the infield mix (depending upon the team’s decision on Asdrubal Cabrera, at least) and finding a place for a quality bat (especially with Michael Conforto now facing an uncertain timeline to return from a major shoulder injury). The team will mostly have to hope for the best from its injury-riddled rotation, though perhaps a veteran could be considered there. Indeed, a swingman type might help boost the starting depth while also representing an option in the pen.
New York will likely have around $100MM already committed after it wraps up a costly bunch of arbitration deals. For an organization that had ramped up to over $150MM in salary to open the current season, though, that leaves quite a lot of room to work with — though the team’s anticipated salary levels in the coming season aren’t yet known.