Additional Bullpen Targets
Earlier today, I posted an analysis regarding some potential bullpen targets the Mets may be pursuing. Sure enough, there has been some additional reporting on some additional relievers the Mets may be pursuing on the trade market. In the sake of my sanity and for the sake of completion, here are some additional names the Mets are considering:
Huston Street – Each Perhaps due to his early season oblique injury, Street has lost a tick or two off his fastball. The end result is Street having a career worse season with a 5.03 ERA and a 1.932 WHIP in 23 appearances. The hope with him is Dan Warthen can have a similar effect on him as he has had on Addison Reed, who is having a tremendous year without a mid to high 90s fastball. One major obstacle for Street is his contract. He is due to make $9 million next year with a $10 million option with a $1 million opt out for 2018.
Joe Smith – Strangely enough, Smith might be the player who has played the best out of all the players in the ill fated J.J Putz trade. Since leaving the Mets, Smith steadily improved, and eventually became a very good reliever who could be used against righties and lefties despite his submarine style of pitching. This year, he has struggled a bit this year with a 4.36 ERA and a 1.396 WHIP in 33 appearances. Like his teammate Street, his velocity is down by a hair this year. He will be a free agent this season.
David Robertson – The former Yankee has shown he can pitch well in a pennant race in New York. Since leaving the Yankees, Robertson has been a very good closer, but he has not been as dominant as he was with the Yankees. His early career walk troubles have re-emerged this year as he is walking 5.0 batters per nine innings. On the year, he has 23 saves in 26 chances with a 4.03 ERA and a 1.447 WHIP. Aside from one disastrous appearance in Game Three of the 2003 ALCS against Texas, he has only allowed two earned runs in 16.2 postseason innings while striking out 16 batters. He is still not a realistic option as he has two years and $25 million remaining on his contract.
Overall, the contracts for each of these players will most likely preclude the Mets from acquiring any of these relievers in a potential trade. Again, the best bet for the Mets is to take a flyer on a guy like a John Axford, for Jim Henderson to get healthy (not likely), or for Antonio Bastardo to start pitching better and become the guy the Mets thought they were getting when they signed him as a free agent in the offseason.