The hope with the hiring of Brodie Van Wagenen is that it won’t be business as usual for the Mets. Perhaps nowhere does this have more potential to help than with how the club handles its young players. We all remember last year when Sandy Alderson brought in Adrian Gonzalez for his age 36 season to play first base, rather than give homegrown players Dominic Smith and Wilmer Flores a chance to be the Opening Day starter.

Van Wagenen has the chance to be even bolder this year. Flores had a bunch of MLB experience and Smith had played enough to lose his rookie status the year before. But this year, Van Wagenen has the opportunity to break camp with Peter Alonso, a guy with zero MLB experience, as his starter. In previous years, that would have been unthinkable for nearly all clubs but certainly with the Alderson-led Mets.

Alonso went to the Arizona Fall League and Van Wagenen went out to see him play. The new GM was in the park when Alonso turned around a 103 mph fastball for a homer. Afterwards, the two went out to dinner and discussed things, with Van Wagenen telling the youngster that he had the full support of the organization and that he had a chance to win the first base job in Spring Training.

If Alonso was on the Opening Day roster, it means that the Mets were impressed enough with him to pick putting their best roster on the field, rather than sending him to the minors to get another year of control and grant him Super Two status. And that would really be a new way of doing things.

GETTING REAL WITH THE COST OF ACQUIRING THE MARLINS’ CATCHER – Over at MetsBlog yesterday, Matthew Cerrone had a piece where he talked about trading for J.T. Realmuto, a subject which has been on the minds of Mets fans – and perhaps some in the organization – for at least a year now. Cerrone spoke to several baseball executives and the consensus was that fair market value would be “one or two prospects considered to be among the Top 100 in baseball, as well as a third, mid-level prospect with significant upside.”

Cerrone then filled in the blanks with names, saying that Realmuto would cost the Mets Alonso, Andres Gimenez and Justin Dunn. And even that might not be enough, depending on which other teams would be in the bidding. The Mets absolutely need to find out what the asking price is for Realmuto. But if this is the cost, it’s time to say no thanks and move on.

BAUTISTA SHINES IN ARIZONA – It was not a great season for Gerson Bautista, who had a 4.82 ERA in Double-A, a 5.22 ERA in Triple-A and a 12.46 ERA in the majors in 2018. But he ended the year on a good note, as he put up a 2.38 ERA and a 1.147 WHIP in nine games and 11.1 IP in the AFL. Bautista was on the 40-man roster, so his call to the majors last year was based on the ease of the roster move, rather than good pitching. Perhaps this year his call to Queens can be merit-based.

A REMINDER OF HOW BAD THE BULLPEN WAS – While Bautista was horrible in his brief appearances in the majors last year, he had a ton of company. The Mets finished 13th in the National League with a pen WHIP of 1.411, 14th in ERA with 4.96 mark and 15th – also known as last – in HR allowed, with 82. The question isn’t if the Mets need to add to their bullpen in the offseason, it’s how many arms do they need to bring in. While the virtual ink gets spent on Realmuto, Paul Goldschmidt, Kris Bryant and Manny Machado – let’s hope some real dollars are spent on the relief corps.

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE AWARD WINNER – To the surprise of no one, Jacob deGrom was selected as the CY Award winner Wednesday. He received 29 of 30 first place votes to become the fourth pitcher in franchise history to pull down this award. Now the hope is that deGrom can continue to pitch at an elite level while he’s under team control. While fans rush out to give him a long-term contract, the reality is that he’s under team control for two more years, meaning there’s plenty of time to get a deal done, whether that’s in 2019 or 2020.

17 comments on “Hope for Peter Alonso, the cost for J.T. Realmuto and congrats to Jacob deGrom

  • David Groveman

    I love Realmuto but I would only trade one of those guys for him and the Marlins will want more than that. Mets are better off spending the money on Grandal or Wilson.

    Machado and Bryant are pipe dreams. If the Mets get a catcher who can hit and play defense (while staying healthy) and a few relievers (including a closer) they will improve.

    My gut tells me that the Mets are still bargain basement buyers.

    Martin Maldonado and a “closer” who is regarded as the 4th or 5th best option is what I predict the Mets spending money on.

  • TexasGusCC

    In mid-September, I read that the Marlins don’t have a single 1B in their top-30 and the highest middle infielder is ranked 12th, from a system that is bottom tier. I proposed a “Dom Smith, Giminez, and Dunn” offer knowing that Smith was top-100, Giminez really could be a nice player, but I question the hit tool, and Dunn may max out as a reliever. So, if you sub Alonso for Smith, I’m in.

    I like Bautista. Anyone that throws 100 has a spot in my bullpen. He needs teaching and he doesn’t have experience, but we need to build something and that takes patience and know-how. Bashlor, Bautista, Gsellman, Lugo, and (one of) Hanhold/Smith/Ryan are the beginnings to a great bullpen that needs experience and two good lefties.

    • Name

      Why would the Marlins want to trade for a 1b when they can continually swap in a first basemen (Bour/Duda/Morrison/Reynolds/Adams) on 1 year deals for very little (2-3 mil) over the next few years?

      Decent 1b prospects already have very limited value, let alone a washed up 1b like Smith.

      • Brian Joura

        Bour’s an interesting guy. In 2017 he had a .902 OPS and after a down year he gets released rather than a team having to pay him in arbitration.

        There’s a lesson in there somewhere…

      • TexasGusCC

        Name, until your five words, I was good with your logic; maybe I would have considered another arm. But, what is so washed up about a 24 year old? I know you have called him Jon Singleton II and I’ve called Smith a few non-complimentary things, but a 24 year old former top-100 prospect can’t be considered washed up. But, since the Marlins aren’t dealing Realmuto in the division unless they rip a team off completely, I guess it just not happening. Grandal or Ramos it is.

        • Name

          Let’s ignore the washed up part, that’s a tangent and i don’t know why i brought it up. (probably because i hate Smith so much)

          The crux of your trade is that you think the Marlins want a 1b prospect, whereas I don’t think the Marlins are interested in one at all – not when the market the last 2 years has shown that you can find decent producers for little cost on the open market.
          It makes much sense financially to trade for and develop a top prospect at some other position, let’s say SP, and pay for a 1b, than to trade for and develop a prospect 1b and pay for a SP.

  • Dan Capwell

    If the Mets are looking to make a trade, it should be Dunn and Gimenez to Seattle for Edwin Diaz. I am not trading Alonso, he should be the OD first baseman, if for no other reason that he balances out the otherwise lefty-heavy lineup.

    Former Met relief pitcher and now current Seattle GM “Scary” Jerry DiPoto should be on BVW speed dial. The Mariners have a lot of players who could help the Mets, and apparently most of them are on the trading block.

    The Mets have enough mid-level prospects like Bautista or Luis Guillorme who could put together useful ML careers. They should package them together and go hunting.

    • TJ

      I like both Gimemez and Diaz but if BVW can pull that one off I’m all in.

      Realmuto is a perfect fit but essentially unattainable. BVW needs to win one of these free agent catchers, and pick the correct guy.

      A top level team has many key players, but Alonso, Conforto, and Rosario are just crucial. All have shown signs that they can provide plus offense in the big leagues, but, as with all prospects, time will and does tell.

      • Brian Joura

        I’m with TJ – big Gimenez fan but I’d trade him for Diaz.

        Don’t think catcher is near the problem that everyone else does. Won’t turn my nose up at an upgrade but don’t want to overpay for the privilege.

  • Pete from NJ

    Brian’s bullet point format was enjoyable making me think twice on today’s subject matter.

    I’m too sold on Peter Alfonso’s status as the right handed middle of the order right handed bat. With the gamble though, offering Wilmer Flores is a given putting him as backup for everyone.

    Also for the bullpen, the check book needs to be open with some strong research needed to buy the best available talent.. Brian’s stats make this glaring and a bit scary.

    Catcher: if Ramos-Realmuto-Grandal don’t materialize do we accept d’Arnaud/Plaweki tandem for 2019.

  • Chris F

    1. I think its safe to say that Realmuto wont be a Met. The Marlins said already the Mets dont have enough prospects to deliver, and then they dont look to trade in division. Id imagine a trade would require additional in-division talent to make happen. Id call Realmuto to the Mets at < 1%. A defense first C may help the staff, but looking like a sure out when hitting. As an aside, anyone see that Japanese catcher highlight reel for the all star series: h-o-l-y c-o-w!

    2. Velo talks, control "walks" (if you will). Lets hope he doesnt need a GPS to bring that ERA down.

    3. RP is gonna happen no doubt. But the rest of the team is gonna look pretty similar last season's low offense, poor defense, super unathletic version. Sandy ball lives!

    4. Jake's year was phenomenal. For those of you that never saw Seaver or Doc, well, you got pretty much the same thing. Note to Syndergaard: your pitching repertoire needs to grow to become this level of pitcher.

  • Pete from NJ

    For Chris, Doc’s 2nd half 1984 and all of 1985 was deGrom 2018.
    Here’s my wish the team, signing deGrom and he copies Seaver’s +30 age for the next five years.

  • Mike Walczak

    Realmuto is going to cost too much. Other teams will pay more. I think Realmuto is seriously overrated. He will hit in the .270’s with 20 home runs and 75 RBIs. How is that great? He is good, but he is no Gary Carter, Irod or Mike Piazza. The catching position is just not that strong. I’d rather keep the prospects and sign Ramos or Grandal.

    I hope that Alonso wins the first base job. Maybe he can be a rookie of the year candidate.

    I’d spend good money on revamping the bullpen. Maybe even a trade for a reliever.

    So that leaves us with the right handed power bat conundrum. To Machado or not to Machado. Long term gigantic deals make me nervous. The Mets may make an offer, but I just have the gut feeling that he is going to sign with the Yankees or Phillies.

    I do think that Van Wagenen will shake it up. How much, we will see.

  • Eraff

    I’m Out Out Out on Realmuto…Love the player, hate the price. If you’re bringing in a Catcher to Anchor the Right Handed balance of the lineup, you’re playing with a quickly declining asset.

    I’d favor Kicking the tires on Lucroy…. go R/R with Him and Plawecki…. stun the world and sign Machado. Let Todd become your Floater. Get two Relief Pitchers and start playing.

    • Brian Joura

      If Lucroy gets anything besides an NRI, you paid too much. I’d rather see Kevin Plawecki and I’m no Plawecki fan.

  • MattyMets

    JT Realmuto is a nice player and a good catcher, but he’s not Johnny Bench. Any team that gives up that much for him is nuts. I think the Marlins screwed up not getting nearly enough for Stanton, Yellich, Osuna and Gordon, but that doesn’t mean some team needs to over pay for their remaining asset.

  • Metsense

    The price for is too steep. I would not trade Gimenez because Rosario hasn’t matured yet ,although he might ,but you can’t ignore his defensive lapses. Sign Grandal
    The Mets have to sign 2 free agent relief pitchers. The minor league relievers should not be relied on for 2019 instead they should be pleasantly surprising instead.
    If Alonzo shows that he can play first base this spring then I put him in the starting lineup and let him play. By Memorial Day, he is not holding his own, then look for an alternative. Hell, they let Adrian Gonzalez play for that long so why not a potential young stud.
    The Degrominator! I have seen Seaver and Jacob has the same demeanor. Sign him for the 5 year contract. The Mets won’t be wrong.

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