The New York Mets have endured one of the strangest seasons to date. They started off their season late because of the Washington Nationals COVID-19 issue. After that, they started to drop like flies from injury including close to 20 players at one point. They received some record-breaking pitching from Jacob deGrom and better than expected performances from Taijuan Walker and Marcus Stroman.
Now as the trade deadline approaches, one would assume that due to the injuries, the Mets would not be in any position to buy. That is most certainly not the case. They sit atop the NL East and have done so for roughly two months straight. The offense has not performed as expected and especially with Francisco Lindor out for a few more weeks, the Mets can use a bat to boost their lineup. The bat would be most useful up the middle with Lindor’s absence.
There are a few options with those criteria on the market including Eduardo Escobar of the Arizona Diamondbacks, Asdrubal Cabrera also of the Diamondbacks, Trea Turner of the Washington Nationals, and Whit Merrifield of the Kansas City Royals.
Baez, 28, is a pending free agent and recently expressed that he would have interest in playing alongside Fransisco Lindor whom he was teammates with for the 2017 World Baseball Classic on Team Puerto Rico.
— Chino Martinez (@Josechino15) July 28, 2021
“If I go to free agency, I would like to play with Francisco Lindor. I loved playing with him in the World Classic. It is the only option I would take to play second base if it is to play with him; otherwise, I stay playing at shortstop.”
This seems to bode well for the Mets who can use a boost like Baez in their lineup. He also would add some substantial defense to further improve the Mets’ fourth-ranked defense in the majors this season.
The two-time All-Star has had a sub-par season with a .245/.289/.483 slash line and a .773 OPS. His OPS+ is 107 and Baez has also hit 22 home runs and knocked in 65 along with 13 stolen bases. He has also won a Gold-Glove and a Silver Slugger award over his eight seasons in Chicago. He helped bring them their first title in over 108 years and won the NLCS MVP in the process.
The cost for Baez may come a bit lower than teammate Kris Bryant whom the Mets have been linked to, although not cheap. Per many scouts, it would cost the Mets either Ronny Mauricio and a lower-level prospect or Mark Vientos and a mid-tier prospect. Both players have been playing phenomenal this season and would be tough to part with but for the right price, it may be worth it for the Mets.
Follow Yehuda Schwartz on Twitter @yaschwa30
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