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Brandon Nimmo Should Be Untouchable

According to recent reports, the Mets are pursuing J.T. Realmuto. Purportedly, the Marlins want a combination of young MLB players under control plus some prospects for Realmuto. The MLB players mentioned were Michael Conforto, Amed Rosario, and Brandon Nimmo. If that’s the cost, especially Nimmo, the Mets should tell the Marlins there’s no deal.

In fact, if anyone approaches the Mets about Nimmo, they should hang up the phone.

Last year, Nimmo was one of the best players in the National League. In fact, if not for the Mets completely falling apart in the May, it is quite possible Nimmo would have been one of the top five in MVP voting. No, this is not hyperbole.

In 2018, Nimmo was second in the National League in both wRC+, OPS+, and OBP. He had the third highest WAR among National League outfielders. He was fourth in the league in triples. He was ninth in walks and first in HBP.  Taking all of this into account, Nimmo profiled as the best lead-off hitter in the National League, and if Mookie Betts wasn’t a lead0ff hitter for the Red Sox, you could probably argue Nimmo was the best leadoff hitter in baseball.

When you take Nimmo’s production and you combine it with his not yet being arbitration eligible, you have one of the most valuable assets in all of baseball. Nimmo is playing at an All Star level, is still just 25 years old, and he is under team control through the 2022 season. This is the type of asset you build upon, not one you trade away when you can simply sign other players to fill other voids.

Speaking of voids, trading Nimmo leaves a huge one. If you are going to look to replace him, you are talking about injury plagued players like Michael Brantley or A.J. Pollock. There’s also veterans on the backside of their careers like Andrew McCutchen or Adam Jones. Past that, and you’re really rolling the dice that Curtis Granderson or Nick Markakis have just one year left in them.

Sure, you can mention Bryce Harper, but if you have the money to sign him, just go ahead and sign him. He is supposedly willing to play first base. If he isn’t, Nimmo can play center. He was a -2 DRS in 350.1 innings there last year, but according to Baseball Savant he has the same spring speed as Juan Lagares, which at least suggests he can make improvements if he were to remain at the position (no, this is not to say he’s going to win any Gold Gloves).

Overall, Nimmo is a cost controlled outfielder who was one of the best hitters in all of baseball last year. He is a driven to get better, and he is versatile in the outfield. With him not yet being arbitration eligible and under team control for four more years, he is as untouchable as any player, pitchers included, on this Mets team.

18 thoughts on “Brandon Nimmo Should Be Untouchable”

  1. oldbackstop says:

    First off, no one, ever, anywhere, is untouchable. Incredibly bad start to any article.

    I would not trade Nimmo or Conforto straight up for Realmuto. I would trade Rosario for him. Gimenez is ready right behind him, we can get a SS capable utility player as a bridge.

    But trades never happen straight up, do they?

    The problem with us Mets fans is we have to think like accountants because of the Coupons. Maybe a big win now effort, successful or not, followed by a drought is what is needed to shake the money tree. If we are going to spend 60 percent of the money our competitors are, it doesn’t matter if we teard down rebuild, stock up….doesn’t matter. Might have a few years of luck with youth if the stars align….probably about the same as a orgasmic shot at win now for a few years. Either way, if we are paying 60 percent that our competitors are, we will do so with a thin bench and subject to the whim of a few injuries.

    Here is what the mets need to do:

    – Sign Pollock for center. A pitching based team with Micheal Conforto in center is a joke.
    – trade for Realmuto. A pitching based team deserves a real catcher.
    – add an FA starting pitcher in the 2-3 range and *Don’t* trade Syndergaard. Having three great starters with Matz/Vargas behind them is exactly like having five B- starters (until you get to the playoffs)

    That is a playoff team with a punchers (pitchers) chance at a title.

    What does that cost? That isn’t Yankees/Red Sox/Dodgers numbers.

    Note: as far as Nimmo and McNeil….I think they are both punching way over their weight. I think it quite possible that at the end of their careers 2018 might be the highlight.

    But don’t ever say anyone is untouchable. It bows to the Wilpon’s financial woes. Hopefully that is behind us.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      No one is untouchable, however, there are guys you build around. Given production and cost control, Nimmo is that guy.

      I do see your point on Rosario, but they want him plus other played.

      1. You don’t want Pollock. He’s injury prone, and his stats are cratering.

      2. Sign Grandal. Him and Nimmo is better than Realmuto and Pollock

      3. Completely agree on signing another SP

      1. OldBackstop says:

        Yes, I concur on Grandal. Frankly….I am not alarmed at going in with Plawecki/D’Arnaud….we won a pennant with them. Any catcher approaching 30 concerns me…the numbers show how few catchers, even younger ones, catch more than 140 games or so. It has almost become a platoon position. If you sign somebody there for his bat, he better play first too.

        If we have the chits and sheckels for just one more bat, I wouldn’t make it a catcher.

  2. oldbackstop says:

    Oh, just another comment….who are the young players I have heard were untouchable in the past? Dilson Herrera….Preston Wilson….hell, Michael Fulmer was 3-12, 4.69 ERA in 2018 after all the handwringing about that trade.

    To me, the guys that are “untouchable” have the added aura of leadership and fan appeal that rise above the dice toss of bodies for bodies.

    Like Tom Seaver.

    Maybe David Wright five years ago…wouldn’t that trade look good now?

    Or Thor.

    Thor should be the guy talked about as untouchable, if I brooked such thoughts. He is the guy that buzzed the Royals leadoff batter and said come get me. My daughters are Mets lunatics, and they have been to five Mets games…all Thor starts. He is a twitter/social media monster.

    But is he untouchable? No. If the Angels sign Trout to a 10/$200 mil deal and send us Trout with $200 mil, I give them Thor.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      There’s a clear difference between players who have produced at the MLB level and prospects.

      Also, untouchable players from years past include Wright, Harvey, Reyes, and Milledge.

  3. Corey Holzer says:

    Nimmo is a 4th outfielder despite Mets fans fascination with him and I am a Mets fan for almost 50 years.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      You’re standing as a Mets fan for 40 years doesn’t make you right.

      You don’t trade a player who had the season Nimmo had, who is also not a free agent until 2023.

  4. Baseball fan says:

    I agree, why trade Nimmo if he is just starting to reach his potential. Just sign Grandal and be done with this catching search. Give Grandal 3 years and somewhere between 35 and 45 million. He will give you about 25/75 a year with this lineup and handle the staff well. Then start drafting catchers so in 3 years you dont have to go through this again. Also jettison Frasier in a trade and being back Murphy on a 3 year deal. It was a mistake not to resign him in the first place and he can play third and be available for second or first on an emergency basis. Plus he’s a winner and has a winner’s attitude which we need more of.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      While I’m not as eager as you to part with Frazier, I have to say it’s an interesting plan

  5. Brian Dobkin says:

    Mets should trade Rosario, Alonso, Gimenez for Realmuto. All three Mets players are expendable. We have Cecchini SS and Smith 1B. Cecchini showed significant improvement before his injury and is poised to be a force in 2019. Smith raised his MLB batting average by 26 points in 2018. Say what you want about his 47 strikeouts in 49 games, but that averages to just under one strikeout / game. He also has a better OBP than Alonso. Alonso’s batting average dropped 64 points from AA Binghamton to AAA Las Vegas. This is alarming since the 61s played in the 4th most hitter friendly ballpark of the very hitter friendly PCL. Also so needs another season @ AAA now in Syracuse to prove he’s MLB ready.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      No player is expendable.

    2. OldBackstop says:

      Icm wondering if this post is parody, or by a Marlins fan.

      “Smith raised him MLB batting average 26 points!”

      Yeah, from .198 in 2017 to .224 in 2018….

    3. OldBackstop says:

      “His (Alonso’s) batting average dropped 60 points from AA to AAA. (Actually 54))

      “Yeah, and his OPS in AAA was .941, and he hit 21 home runs in 67 games.”

      If it were up to me, I’d sign Grandal, get Alonso up May 1 to win the everyday 1b job, and have a nice infield rotation of Cano, Frazier, McNeil, Rosario plus maybe Gimenez if he can get at bats, or…..or….. Wilmer…

      We then have all our treasure to sign two strong bullpen arms, a centerfield capable 4th OF and a veteran innings burner SP.

      1. metsdaddy says:

        I’d give Smith the first base job to permit the Mets to get an extra year of control over Alonso

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