The Mets and right-hander Trevor May “are deep in talks” about a potential contract, MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo reports (Twitter link). “This is not a done deal, but there is smoke,” DiComo writes, indicating that the negotiations may be in a rather advanced stage. As noted by The Athletic’s Tim Britton, May and Mets pitching coach Jeremy Hefner have a good relationship, dating back to Hefner’s previous position as the Twins’ assistant pitching coach.
The 31-year-old May has quietly been one of the more effective relievers in baseball over the last three seasons, posting a 3.19 ERA, 4.03 K/BB rate, and 12.2 K/9 over 113 innings (in 113 games) for the Twins since the start of the 2018 season. This performance came on the heels of a Tommy John surgery that cost May all of the 2017 campaign, though his durability since his return would seem to answer any questions about his arm condition.
May’s hard-contact numbers trended upwards in 2020, and his 1.9 HR/9 was a career high. Those were more or less the only blemishes on another solid season for May, as ERA predictors (2.74 xFIP, 2.38 SIERA) drastically outperformed his actual 3.86 ERA. May’s 14.7 K/9 was also a career best, and he has continued to steadily increase fastball velocity. Since returning from Tommy John surgery, May has added over two miles of velocity to his average fastball, going from 94.1 mph in 2018 to 96.4mph last season.
Signing May would represent the first big free agent strike for the Mets under the Steve Cohen/Sandy Alderson regime, as the club has been linked in rumors to seemingly just about every big name on the market. May’s addition would be a boost to a Mets bullpen that was inconsistent through 2020, and May would seemingly slot right in as the primary setup man for closer Edwin Diaz.