Most people will know that the Mets traded their closer, Jeurys Familia, to the Oakland Athletics for two C-Level prospects in William Toffey and Bobby Wahl. This isn’t to say that Toffey and Wahl have no value but it proves that the Mets need to hire Sandy Alderson’s replacement because the current braintrust isn’t doing the team any favors.
Yet, why am I so upset about the Mets trading a rental closer? Teams are not going to pay top dollar for a relief pitcher who is only going to walk away at the end of the 2018 season. The Mets got two players and shed some salary, we should all be satisfied.
No, flip that, maybe we shouldn’t.
A week or so ago the Cleveland Indians traded a Top 5 prospect, Francisco Mejia, for Brad Hand and Adam Cimber. Now, certainly Hand is locked up for more seasons but he and Familia are similar in age and Familia, it could be argued, has the better arsenal of weapons. Add to this that Hand is like to make a pretty hefty amount in his arbitration raises and it becomes more questionable. Furthermore, Cimber is a 27 year old rookie with a mixed bag of results over a five year minor league history.
Could the Mets not have come up with a package of equitable value? Could the Mets not have found more value than Oakland gave them? I’d argue they could have and they should have.
So, what did they get?
Toffey, a left-handed hitting third baseman, showed a reasonably good eye in his post college debut in 2017. Toffey now appears to have improved his limited power but gained a tendency to swing and miss. A Fourth Round pick, Toffey has some chance to bounce back into being in the B-Level echelon of prospects with an extremely slim outside chance of progressing into a major league starter.
Wahl is the latest shot-in-the-dark reliever to join the Mets via fire sale. I think he has signs of being a potentially viable relief option and is likely the better part of the deal. At the age of 25 he turned in a masterful start to the season in AAA (which is no easy task for a PCL pitcher) before looking very human in the majors. The silver lining is that at 25 and on the cusp of the majors the Mets will not be waiting for their return on Wahl for long.
Jeff McNeil continues to build his case for a debut – It’s only a matter of time before John Ricco pulls the trigger on a deal that sends Asdrubal Cabrera to a contender for a smattering of prospects. At that point, McNeil is a near lock to make his way to the majors. (Batting over .300 for the past 10 games and for his entire time in AAA)
Chris Flexen makes it three in a row – Three quality starts in his last three outings in the difficult PCL. Flexen still looks, to me, like a major league starter in the back end of a rotation. (19 IP, 3 ER, 14 K)
Justin Dunn is back in the Top 5 – His rebound season continues to be a point of major positive energy in the Met system. At this rate Dunn may earn a spot in Baseball America’s Top 100 once again. (7/21 Start: 6.0 IP, 7 Hits, 0 ER, 2 BBs, 7 K)
Levi Michael is a star in AA – The 27 year old former prospect is tearing up AA for the Rumble Ponies and powering the heart of the order. (Batting .417 with 1 HR, 7 BBs and 2 SB in the last 10 games)
Tim Tebow landed on the DL with a hand injury. He’s had both X-rays and an MRI already and is scheduled to see a specialist on Monday. Best-case scenario is that he’s out seven days.
Ali Sanchez has been great in Florida – Since his promotion he’s been everything that the scouts were hoping for. It is still to early to hope that he holds onto this offensive strength and reaches the majors though. (Batting .314/.352/.451 in 16 games at Advanced A)
Andres Gimenez got a promotion to Binghamton following his appearance in the Futures Game. He finished his time at St. Lucie with a .282/.348/.432 line and he was leading the Florida State League with 28 stolen bases.
Anthony Dirocie handles mid-season promotion well – A good sign for the 21 year old outfielder who tore through the APP on his way to the NYP. (.303/.465/.394 in his 11 games in Brooklyn)
Wagner Lagrange putting together another solid year – After a wonderful 2017 and 2018 it looks like Lagrange is ready for more. (He’s hitting .371 over his last 10 games)
Jaison Vilera has yet to pitch poorly – In his 7 starts for the year his worst outing only saw him give up 1 run. (Currently sporting an ERA of 0.92 for the year)
Raul Beraciarte looks pretty great – The 19 year old outfielder is hitting, showing power, showing patience and stealing bases. (He also has an OPS of 1.054)
Luis Santana is shows great patience – He keeps getting on base at a prodigious rate. (His OBP is sitting at a healthy .455 for the year)
Ronny Mauricio looks like a star – He not only hits the ball regularly but with authority. (He has 15 extra base hits in 28 games)