This season has been a horror show for the Mets, who entered the campaign with designs on a playoff berth but have stumbled to a 39-48 record thus far. With the July 31 trade deadline just over three weeks away, the Brodie Van Wagenen-led club looks like a surefire seller. However, the Mets have told other teams they’re still in wait-and-see mode when it comes to the deadline, Buster Olney of ESPN tweets.
The Mets have shown no real life since a decent early start to the season. As lousy as they’ve been over the past couple months, though, the Mets still aren’t completely dead in the National League playoff race. While New York is 12 1/2 games back of Atlanta in the NL East, it’s a more manageable 6 1/2 out of a wild-card spot. That’s not an insurmountable total with three months remaining on the schedule. However, as the NL’s second-worst team, it’s going to be a massive challenge for the Mets to hop over 10 clubs with superior records in order to earn a playoff spot.
The greater likelihood is the Mets will indeed wind up selling off select veterans by the end of the month. Doing so would enable the team to somewhat improve a farm system that’s lacking – especially after the Mets traded top 100 prospects Jarred Kelenic and Justin Dunn to the Mariners in a winter deal for Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz. Three months into the season, the disappointing performances of Cano and Diaz are among the reasons the Mets are in this unfavorable position.
There are two obvious trade chips on the Mets in right-hander Zack Wheeler and third baseman Todd Frazier, both impending free agents. Multiple teams have already shown interest in Wheeler, arguably the best rental starter who could change hands this month. Lefty Jason Vargas has perhaps pitched his way onto starter-needy teams’ radars, meanwhile, and there has been speculation about the Mets trying to move catcher Wilson Ramos. They may have buyers’ remorse in the first season of Ramos’ two-year, $19MM contract.