Rich MacLeod, Fan Post:
Giancarlo Stanton, Carlos Gonzalez, Troy Tulowitzki.
Three incredibly talented offensive players, one of whom’s addition would greatly improve this roster in 2014. The Mets have been dying for an offensive player of that caliber—someone that they can pair with David Wright—in order to get this team back into October. That all being said, there’s a case that acquiring any of these three guys, at this time, would be a mistake.
What do major league teams want more than anything? Young pitching. What do the Mets have? Young pitching. That’s what it will cost this team to get one of these premiere sluggers, but it won’t be just one pitcher—it will be multiple. It’s all speculative, but it stands to reason that conversations with the Miami Marlins about Giancarlo Stanton begin and end with Zack Wheeler, Noah Syndergaard and more. With Gonzalez and Tulowitski, it likely won’t cost you both of those top tier pitching prospects, but it’s will probably cost one.
The injury to Matt Harvey, while Sandy Alderson has said it will have no effect on their offseason plans, complicates things. John Harper of the New York Daily News wrote this about the Mets and Tulowitzki:
The Rockies aren’t desperate to get rid of the contract, but baseball people familiar with their thinking say Colorado believes getting a package for Tulowitzki while reinvesting some of the money it would save could speed up a necessary rebuilding process. OK, so how about this: Travis d’Arnaud, Dillon Gee, and Rafael Montero for Tulowitzki.
From a Mets perspective, that trade would have been a no-brainer had it been proposed earlier this season. But, with Harvey’s 2014 season lost to surgery, does it really make sense for Sandy Alderson to trade away 40 percent of next year’s starting rotation for a bat, even one as accomplished as Tulo? Not only is Harvey going under the knife, but you have Jenrry Mejia coming off surgery, and while Noah Syndergaard is one of the better pitching prospects I’ve seen in some time, prospects don’t come with a guarantee.
While adding a Stanton, Gonzalez or Tulowitzki would significantly bolster this line-up, it would also be detrimental to the pitching staff. Rather than trading them away, the better course of action would appear to be holding onto their young guns and going the free agent route.
It won’t be cheap, and there aren’t any free agents in the class of these hitters, but pitching wins championships, and that’s what Sandy Alderson and the Mets are trying to build toward.