Marcus Stroman Is A Better Option Than Trevor Bauer

Steve Cohen has agreed to purchase the New York Mets and his approval as the new owner is all but a formality. In that vein, Cohen has already set off to work hiring Sandy Alderson, looking to beef up the analytics department, and announcing al employees will receive full pay starting November 1.

This is a great start, but Cohen needs to pay attention to his roster. To that end, Marcus Stroman is a pending free agent, and the Mets have a window for exclusive negotiating rights with him.

Locking up Stroman is of vital importance for a few reasons. Chief among those is the sorry state of this starting rotation.

Even with David Peterson having a solid rookie season, the only starter the Mets can realistically rely upon in 2021 is Jacob deGrom. Ultimately, the Mets have a lot of difficult decisions to make rounding out the rest of the rotation.

At some point, they may get Noah Syndergaard back next year. In looking at that, it’s important to remember Syndergaard is a pending free agent, and the Mets don’t have the best history of getting pitchers back from Tommy John.

That leaves the Mets searching for a number two for next year and the ensuing seasons. Given how Brodie Van Wagenen needlessly ravaged the Mets farm system, that starter isn’t coming through the farm system. That leaves free agency.

Looking at free agency, there are only two starters who fill this need. The first is Stroman, and the other is Trevor Bauer. Now, Bauer is coming off a Cy Young caliber (shortened) season, but you can still make the case Stroman is the better option.

In Bauer’s career, he’s only had two very good seasons. That’s this shortened season and 2018. Sandwiched between them was a very uneven 2019 where he was more good than bad.

Over this three year stretch, Bauer is 28-23 with a 3.18 ERA, 144 ERA+, and a 3.38 FIP. Overall, he has had a 9.6 WAR over this stretch.

Now, Stroman didn’t pitch this year due to family concerns. This makes his most recent three year stretch 2017 – 2019. Over that stretch, Stroman was 27-31 with a 3.65 ERA, 120 ERA+, and a 3.83 FIP. Overall, he had a 10.0 WAR over that stretch.

Looking at the baseline numbers, you might be inclined to surmise Bauer was clearly the better of the two. While an understandable presumption, lost in that was their respective levels of competition.

Stroman pitched in the AL East for the vast majority of his three year stretch whereas Bauer pitched in both Central divisions.

Looking at the 2017 – 2020 time period, Stroman has faced far superior competition.

Over this time span, the Yankees (2), Rays (6), and Red Sox (7) were all in the top 10 in wRC+. He did have an easier time with the Orioles who were 22nd in that time frame.

The problem with that from Bauer’s perspective is when you compare the two, he regularly faced three offenses WORSE than the Orioles. Those offenses were the Pirates (23), Royals (25), and Tigers (28).

Yes, the Twins (5) have had a good offense during this stretch. After them, the next best offense Bauer faced was the Cubs at 10th. The problem there is Bauer got to routinely face them when the Cubs were terrible offensively. In fact, much of his 2020 campaign was spent beating up horrendous offensive teams.

Look, there’s value in the ability to beat bad teams. From what we’ve seen from Bauer, he can also beat good offensive ballclubs. After all he pitched well against the Atlanta Braves in the Wild Card Series.

Still, if you’re going to sign a pitcher to a big contract, you want it to be the guy who’s proven to pitch at an All Star level while consistently facing superior offensive teams. That’s clearly Stroman.

There’s another factor too. We have already seen Stroman be able to handle New York and the big stage. He did it as a visitor with the Toronto Blue Jays. He’s done it in the postseason and WBC. He’s also handled it well as a member of the Mets.

Once Stroman inks a deal, you know the pressures of being a Met are not going to get to him. We don’t know that with Bauer. He may thrive here. He may wilt. With his social media presence, he may very well do both.

Taking that and everything into account, Stroman should be the Mets priority, and the team should use their exclusive window to sign him to an extension. It’ll give them a number two starter for years to come. It will also give them a quality pitcher they know can handle this stage.

24 thoughts on “Marcus Stroman Is A Better Option Than Trevor Bauer”

  1. Oldbackstop says:

    What were the family concerns that led him to trash the Mets season single handedly 4 days after reaching free agency service time.

    Oh yeah. Covid.

    You think Covid and its mutations are going to be gone in five months? You think Stroman is going to care less about his family?

    Marcus Strom is the last human on earth I want on the Mets unless he is paid as a seventh starter on a per game basis.

    1. metsdaddy says:

      Typical response from you.

      Be better.

  2. oldbackstop says:

    Why would you say “family concerns” rather than “opted out due to COVID”? No mention of COVID in the whole article? The word doesn’t appear?

    Seems disingenuous.

    You wrote a whole piece about his being one of the 0.75% MLB players to bail on his team. You lauded his “bravery/”

    Why the selective memory?

    1. Rich says:

      It is disingenuous, fake news. This is the, we love having the pandemic crowd here. Masks, dont leave your house and hope it takes down the county so we can have socialism and not have to compete for anything, ever again. If they only knew what communism has in store for them. (There is no such thing as socialism)

      Remember when we released some 3A pitcher and he claimed it was immoral for the Mets to do that because he could be claimed by Tampa and they had just had the covid breakout? The player was claimed by Philadelphia, I think. I bet he wishes hed been claimed by Tampa now.

      All the NY Rangers blogs have become socialist too. They would give ADA away for free because hes a trump guy. Thats why left NY to live in the cradle of democracy, Colombia. Here hard work, loyalty and competition are considered noble.

      1. metsdaddy says:

        I didn’t say it was immoral to DFA Bashlor. In actuality, it was a larger discussion as to where the line is or should be when knowingly subjecting players to harm in the name of winning.

        1. Rich says:

          I wouldnt normally be such a tool, but you said this and then denied it. I said before I like the site and I think you may just be trying to create clicks, and as a capitalist I respect that. But Im so sick of the Covid BS. You maskers are fueling the neo-commies, thats too much for me, so here you go. Your headline says it all, but I copied the thread for prosperity.

          Does An MLB Team Have A Moral Obligation To Not DFA Players Right Now?

          Before yesterday’s game, the Mets designated Tyler Bashlor for assignment to add David Peterson to the 30 man roster. With the Mets needing a starter and Peterson not on the 30 or 40 yet, the Mets needed to make this move to add him. Looking at the Mets roster, you can certainly make the case Bashlor was the player who should have been designated for assignment.

          However, with all that is happening right now, it is fair to ask whether the Mets did the right thing by designating Bashlor for assignment.

          Baseball is a business, and there are always tough decisions to make. The Mets made one of them, and on paper, it made sense. However, when you look at what is happening with the Miami Marlins, you do wonder if morally it was the right move to put Bashlor in a precarious situation.

          The Miami Marlins have seen over half their roster test positive for COVID19. This has put the Marlins in a precarious spot as they don’t know when their players will be able to return to play. As such, they are in the position where they basically have to go out and claim nearly every player who is put on waivers. With one of the things the Marlins desperately need is pitching, Bashlor may soon have to make a decision.

          If the Marlins claim Bashlor, he is going to have to decide between going to a Marlins team we all know is infected with COVID19 or opting out of the season. If he opts out for the season, there is a possibility his MLB career is over, which is something players like Brock Holt have spoken about when begrudgingly deciding to play.

          That is an awful situation for a player. On the one hand, he may have to pick playing for a team and exposing himself to a virus which has created long term health issues for other player. On the other, his career, the thing he has worked for his entire life, could be gone. It’s why we see players like Chase d’Arnaud sending out tweets saying he is available to play

          Rich Hausig on July 29, 2020 at 4:04 pm
          It’s not a moral decision for him is a financial decision

          metsdaddy on July 29, 2020 at 4:15 pm

          Bashlor has a financial decision. The Mets have a moral one.


          Rich Hausig on July 29, 2020 at 5:04 pm
          How? Because he might be picked up by the Marlins? What if another club got him? What if he goes there and becomes great because he got the chance? I understand having a conscience and I respect you for having a kind conscience very much. But you could get sick anywhere, he could fall in front of a bus on the way to the airport. Its his job, he gets paid way more than he could in any other job but if it he wants to get another job he can. Youre not sentencing to a leper camp or to the gas chamber.

          metsdaddy on July 29, 2020 at 5:10 pm
          Chances are he’s going to be picked up by the Marlins due to need. When you DFA Bashlor, you know that’s an inherent risk.

          And your comparisons are off the mark. Yes, you can get sick or have an accident anywhere, but this is knowingly sending someone into a hazardous situation

          Rich Hausig on July 29, 2020 at 5:42 pm
          Heres the other thing about that. He is being paid to do nothing. Not his problem, he has a contract and thats how it works. But he has to at least do nothing SOMEWHERE. Or he can go home he doesnt have to play.

          I think no show jobs are prosecuted under the RICO statutes, no one wants that. ;.) (thats a joke)

          metsdaddy on July 29, 2020 at 5:43 pm

          If he doesn’t play, he doesn’t get paid. If he doesn’t play, his career could be over

          1. Mets Daddy says:

            It’s odd you’d copy and paste something to prove my point

    2. metsdaddy says:

      Yes, they were family concerns. Unless you have rock solid proof otherwise, this is you just being your typically ignorant self.

  3. Rich says:

    Stroman had every right to opt out after clearing his service time requiments while on the IL. It doesn’t make the little guy any less of a phoney tough guy than he already was.

    But you want him over Bauer? I like this site but your domain should Stroman doesn’t get a trophy for what he did. He gets a down, broke market for his services and he screwed the one team that has real money going in. Hes an opportunist and not a team guy. Again, ill say he had every right to do it but that doesn’t change the reality of how he did it or what we now know he is, an empty can with an ego bigger than his game.

    I dont want him back and I doubt the players do either. We are not a middle market club financially anymore so we can attract the best FAs. We dont need guys like him, who Brian Cashman correctly noted is, “not a difference maker” when we can get guys who are.

    Holding players accountale matters. Its what the Wilpons never did because they were too busy looking for a bargain. Enough of guys like Stroman.

    1. Oldbackstop says:

      You are right, I would think walking into a clubhouse that missed the playoffs by two games while you were at home would be an issue.

      Although maybe he could show them MetsDaddy’s article about how brave he was…..

      The way to do this is look among the financial wounded and take back some bad contracts for some good talent. In a meh free agent year, that is the formula. Maybe it takes a three way.

      1. metsdaddy says:

        I expect nothing more from a guy who thought it was alright J.D. Davis cheated against his Mets teammates.

    2. metsdaddy says:

      Stroman, the person you say is not a team guy, came back early from an ACL injury to help his team get into and win in the postseason.

      Bauer, the apparently team guy you want, helped Cost his team a World Series because he injured himself playing with toys.

  4. oldbackstop says:

    We know how Stroman will react if there is an ongoing COVID epidemic. In fact, he would be a total hypocrite not to opt out, right?

    Is it your theory he will play anyway? Or is it your theory that COVID will be gone by spring training?

    Because I can tell you the answer to one of them.

    How stupid would the Mets be to give Stroman 5/$100 and count on him for the number 2 slot on 2021, and then have him call in sick again and wipe out their season?


    1. metsdaddy says:

      I’m sure no mater what happens you’ll find a way to criticize Stroman

      1. Oldbackstop says:

        You argue like a six year old. He won’t play in a pandemic. There is going to continue to be Covid into 2021….Africa hasn’t even been hit.

        So what’s your logic?

        1 Covid will be gone
        2. Stroman will decide to “endanger his family”
        3. The Mets will be fine depending upon him and having him bail. Like this year.

        Which is it?

        1. metsdaddy says:

          You’re criticizing him for decisions not yet made and attacking me for them.

          That’s exactly my point.

          1. Oldbackstop says:

            You are advocating signing him. There is a pandemic that seems increasingly likely to extend into 2021. Stroman already decided he won’t play in a pandemic. It wasn’t idle chatter….he voted with his feet, and went home, taking the Mets season with him.

            This is a sharply defined set of facts.

  5. royhobbs7 says:

    You’re comparing Marcus Stroman to Trevor Bauer? I know a good opthalmologist who might be able to help improve your vision!

    1. metsdaddy says:

      My vision is 20/10

      1. Oldbackstop says:

        2010. That’s the year his analytics subscription lapsed.

    2. Rich says:

      I was so involved in the Covid argument I didnt even hit on the most important point, as you have correctly noted.

      Im also 5´7″ and was told I was to small to play at each level too, so I understand his drive… which admittedly stronger that mine. But hes no Bauer and sorry, his bravado is BS, hes just another blowhard. Good riddance.

      1. Oldbackstop says:

        I’d admire bravado. He went home. I want to hear why MetsDaddy thinks he won’t do it again if we ink him and are depending on him.

        His answer is insults.

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