Back in 2011 the Mets were floundering and wanted to trade free agent-to-be Carlos Beltran. The Giants were in the thick of the pennant race, needed a bat and had a surplus of young starting pitching. So they sent Zack Wheeler to the Mets for Beltran. The Mets are now in the same position as the Giants were then, but they refuse to take the same gamble.
Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports Saturday the Mets have been talking to the Padres, a floundering team which wants to deal free agent-to-be Justin Upton. They reportedly asked for “at least one high-end prospect back,” maybe two. It is unknown whom the Padres want, but it is not out of the realm of possibility that they asked for one of the Mets young starting pitchers.
The Mets said no, and probably rightly so. Why send a budding ace away for half a season of anyone?
But what if that “anyone” could propel the team to the playoffs? Do you take the risk? The Giants took that risk and failed to make the post season. So was it a mistake?
The Giants only made the deal because they had Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain and Madison Bumgarner in the rotation. They decided a bat was a necessity, while Wheeler was a luxury they could do without.
The Mets, though, have decided to go the other way, holding onto their embarrassment of riches while the offense continues to struggle. Is that the wrong decision? If they manage to make the playoffs, then no. But if they stand pat and don’t make the playoffs because of a lack of runs, then you could make the argument that they should have pulled the trigger.
Either way, it looks like the Mets will keep their young pitchers. And that can’t be a bad thing. Can it?