What Does Steven Matz Deal Mean for Trevor Bauer Pursuit?

When word came down Wednesday night that the Mets dumped Steven Matz on the Blue Jays for three pitching prospects, the first thought that came to the minds of many was, “they are clearing salary space for Trevor Bauer.” That was my first thought, too, and I think it will almost certainly happen.

But before we get to that, let’s talk about the trade. Dare I say, this was a stroke of genius on Sandy Alderson’s part. Here was a guy who by all rights should have been non-tendered after an atrocious 2020, but Alderson decided to hold onto him. And he was able to turn him into three prospects.

Matz did have some success in Flushing, but overall, he was a disappointment. Remember, he was supposed to be the best of the so-called “five aces.” He turned out to be the worst. Speaking of that, there are now just two left on the team — Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard. It’s amazing how because of injury and whatnot, they only took two turns in the rotation together. Oh, what might have been.

Now, back to Bauer. The Mets apparently made an offer to him several weeks ago. It is reported to be up to four years with an opt out, probably in the $30 million per year neighborhood. I have not seen reports of any other teams making offers. If Bauer is not happy with the Mets deal, I could see him taking a one year deal from them and trying again for a record-breaking contract next year. After all, Bauer has said he would only take one year deals for the rest of his career. He has softened on that recently, but it is easy to see him going back to the one year plan if he doesn’t get a multi-year deal to his liking.

Despite Bauer’s less-than-stellar social media behavior, I really want to see him on the mound at Citi Field. Imagine having to face that pitching staff in a playoff series. Of course, they probably still need one more bat to get that far. But they will get one. Wait, do I suddenly have faith in Sandy Alderson? Oh, the times in which we are living!

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