Mets must make moveBy Matt Verderame
The New York Mets are one of the better teams in Major League Baseball, but they need some help. Going into action on July 19, New York is sitting in third place of the National League East with a 49-43 record, one game behind the Miami Marlins and 6.5 games back of the first-place Washington Nationals.
Currently, New York is trailing Miami for the final wild card spot in the senior circuit, something nobody could have imagined only nine months ago when the Mets were playing the Kansas City Royals in the World Series.
New York has all the pitching it could ever want in the rotation. The Mets are stacked with Noah Syndergaard leading the way, alongside 28-year-old Jacob deGrom, southpaw Steven Matz and veteran Bartolo Colon. While Matt Harvey is injured and on the sidelines, Zack Wheeler is expected back sooner rather than later as he continues to recover from Tommy John surgery.
The main problem has been hitting for the team from Flushing. The Mets have Yoenis Cespedes at the heart of the order, and he has been nothing short of a Most Valuable Player candidate. Cespedes, 30, has proven worthy of every cent of his $25 million contract this season, hitting .296 to go with a . 369 on-base percentage. The Cuban slugger also has 21 home runs and 52 RBI, leading the Mets in all four categories.
Behind him, the offense is shaky at best. While Curtis Granderson and second baseman Neil Walker combine for 32 homers with 16 apiece, neither is hitting better than .246. In addition, there is absolutely no speed on the team with both David Wright and Granderson leading the way in that department with three each.
General manager Sandy Alderson has to make some kind of a move. New York could use an upgrade on the left side of the diamond, perhaps making Danny Valencia of the Oakland A’s a target. Another move could be to land a legitimate outfielder. Could Alderson make a phone call and try to pry Ryan Braun away from the Milwaukee Brewers, or even Carlos Gonzalez from the Colorado Rockies? Would the San Diego Padres listen on Wil Myers? Maybe Oakland deals Josh Reddick. Any of those players would represent significant upgrades of varying degrees.
There is more than a week and a half until the MLB Trade Deadline, so Alderson can make some calls and weigh his options. Maybe he even includes one of the younger pitchers to get some real hitters, giving Cespedes even an ounce of protection.
If the Mets have any dreams of making it back to the Fall Classic, they are going to need it.