5 free agents the Mets and Yankees could fight over during 2020 MLB offseason
Sandy Alderson and Brian Cashman TREATED ARTS
Against the backdrop of a strange shortened campaign for 2020 that had seizures and starts due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Mets and Yankees had very different seasons.
The Mets missed the playoffs partly due to the loss of their # 2 and # 3 starters (one due to injury, one due to a COVID opt-out) and also due to their own avoidable failures on the field.
The Yankees eventually failed because of their starting rotation, but they made the playoffs and were a game away from advancing to the ALCS.
Heading into the 2020 off-season, the Mets (with potential new owner Steve Cohen expected to take the lead) and Yankees (who are still trying to end their relatively long drought in the World Series) for some of the marquee free agents quarrel top-heavy class.
Here are five free agents the New York teams could fight over ...
Setting the starting rotation is arguably high on the list for both the Mets and the Yanks, and Bauer, who is slated to win the Cy Young Award after a dominant season with the Cincinnati Reds, will be the cream of the free agent crop .
After Bauer, Marcus Stroman (not a pitcher who Brian Cashman is a huge fan of) is the second best starting pitcher available.
Outspoken and incredibly active on Twitter, it's unclear whether Bauer would be considered fit for the normally tight Yankees. Whether he should be considered fit (yes) is another story.
It is also unclear what Bauer wants. He has said in the past that he is doing fine year on year, but recently said he was open to a longer term deal.
It is clear that Bauer goes well with Jacob deGrom or Gerrit Cole.
Realmuto is one of the top two positional players expected to be available in the free agency. He is a game changer on the plate and behind it.
For the Mets, who will almost certainly take advantage of the $ 1.5 million buyout for Wilson Ramos, adding Realmuto would give them a stabilizing force behind the plate that fits their lineup perfectly, fixing one of their biggest defensive problems and works well with their pitchers.
A seat for Realmuto could be vacant for the Yankees if they decide to move on from Gary Sanchez, whose disappointing 2020 regular season resulted in him being featured in the playoffs for Kyle Higashioka.
According to reports, Realmuto is aiming for a payday of around $ 200 million, though it's hard to see he's getting that much in the current climate.
Even if the Mets and / or Yanks add a bit of the rotation starter (like Bauer), they will likely need a reliable starter that can serve in the middle of the rotation of a competing team.
The Yanks have a lot of history with them, and despite his rocky outings this postseason, he's been a consistent performer who can occasionally dominate.
The Mets, of course, have no history with Tanaka. But they know he did a great pitching in New York. And if they are comfortable with the meds, given that this is Tanaka's partially ripped UCL, he could make a solid medium rotation option along with Stroman.
This could be a reach for the Yankees for several reasons.
Your payroll is already filled with deals that are high in both average annual value and total dollars. And their outfield situation is pretty good with Aaron Hicks, Aaron Judge and Clint Frazier. Oh, and Springer would happen to be from the Houston Astros.
But if the Americans view Frazier as a trading chip and / or are cautious about handing out a mega-deal to Judge if he makes a free choice after the 2022 season, Springer could be a fit.
For the Mets, Springer is a much more obvious target.
The Queens team desperately needs a midfielder who can be an advantage on either side of the ball, and Springer is all that and much more.
There's been a sharp drop in the start-up pitching market from Bauer to the likes of Stroman and Tanaka and then to more affordable options like Walker.
Walker, who was only 28 years old, recently started putting it together.
He had an ERA of 2.70 in 2020 (although his advanced numbers were a little worrying) and could be a solid option for a team that believes in their advantage.
With the Mets and Yanks, Walker could potentially fit near the back end of the rotation.
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