The Mets may have a new option in their pursuit of a second baseman. Following today’s Giancarlo Stanton trade agreement, the Marlins are on track to acquire Starlin Castro, meaning they could be marketing a new second baseman just days after trading Dee Gordon to the Mariners. According to Mike Puma of the New York Post, the Mets plan to speak with the Marlins regarding Castro. The 27-year-old Castro is a great hitter (.300 batting average in 2017), but his offensive value is somewhat held back by his lack of patience (4.9 BB%). Furthermore, he hasn’t provided much in the way of defensive value over the past two seasons. Still, Castro would be an upgrade over any of the current options on the Mets’ depth chart, and he’s been a roughly average big-league player on the whole during his eight-year MLB career. Castro might not require much in the way of a prospect return, either, and he can be controlled through the 2020 season if his club chooses to exercise a $16MM option.
More items from Queens…
- Marc Carig of Newsday throws some cold water on the idea of a Mets-Marlins deal involving Castro. He tweets that although it’s possible the Mets could check in on the Marlins’ newest acquisition, it’s “not likely” that a deal will come together. The Mets reportedly prefer other second base options, so it sounds as though Carig’s sources believe they would exhaust those options before engaging in any serious negotiations with Miami.
- In news of other Mets pursuits, Carig reports that the Mets are interested in a reunion with Addison Reed (Twitter link). The two sides apparently discussed an extension last spring, and for good reason; Reed was perhaps at his best during his tenure in New York. The righty reliever struck out 139 batters 126 2/3 innings with the Mets while walking just 19. His ERA was a pristine 2.20 during that time, though his xFIP (3.28) suggests there was some luck involved. Still, a 4.47 WPA is a great mark for a reliever over a season and a half, and Reed’s 12.1% swinging strike rate is impressive as well.
- In a third tweet, Carig reveals that the Mets are open to trading any of their starting pitchers besides Jacob DeGrom and Noah Syndergaard. While there’s nothing brewing yet, Carig speculates that the Amazins could shop a starter in exchange for a second baseman. From my perspective, this hypothetical strategy could prove difficult. The Mets have reportedly shown interest in Jason Kipnis, but the Indians’ rotation is an area of great strength for the them and they don’t need to trade for another starter. The Tigers and Marlins are in the early stages of rebuilds, so they might be looking for minor league returns for Ian Kinsler and Starlin Castro, respectively, rather than players already at the MLB level. The Mets have shown reported interest in Josh Harrison of the Pirates as well, and the Bucs could use some help in the rotation; perhaps they’d be the best partner for this theoretical strategy.