A published report says the Mets have begun shopping for bullpen help, and have a “profile of the ideal acquisition.”
The Daily News reports that baseball executives “with direct knowledge of their (the Mets) thinking” claim the Mets are looking for a high-profile veteran who has had success in the post-season. This means they are not shopping for some mediocre veteran with the hopes of catching lightning in a bottle.
One source tells the newspaper that the Mets have already called the Padres to ask about Huston Street. Street has 11 saves and a 1.42 ERA for San Diego, numbers that are foreign to the Mets struggling crew.
The only problem with Huston is that he despises Mets bench coach Bob Geren. Here’s what he said last year about his former A’s manager:
“For me personally, he was my least favorite person I have ever encountered in sports from age 6 to 27. I am very thankful to be in a place where I can trust my manager.”
I don’t think this should stop them from acquiring Street. As bench coach, Geren probably doesn’t have much to do with individual relievers.
Another pitcher the Mets are reportedly considering is Brad Lidge. Lidge was released by the Nationals this week after posting a Met-like 9.64 ERA in 11 games this season.
It’s not clear if the 35-year-old Lidge is done. He has had injury issues in recent years; perhaps he is still feeling the effects. But I would take a chance with Lidge. Sign him to a minor league deal and if he does well in Buffalo, bring him up. If not, cut him loose. It wouldn’t cost much money.
Other names being bandied about include Brett Myers from the Astros and Oakland’s Grant Balfour.
Whomever the Mets end up with, I would absolutely, positively not trade Daniel Murphy for bullpen help. There has been lots of talk recently about shopping Murphy. While I like Murphy and hope he remains with the team, I can understand the talk. But trading a starting position player for a reliever is just plain dumb (remember Xavier Nady for Roberto Hernandez and a throw-in named Oliver Perez?).
I know you have to give up someone good to get someone good, but relievers are a dime a dozen — players who can hit like Murphy are not. I think the Mets have enough second-tier prospects to swing a deal without including Murphy.