With the expected trade of acquiring Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz for Jay Bruce, Anthony Swarzak, Gerson Bautista, Justin Dunn, and Jarred Kelenic, the culture has officially changed in Queens. Brodie Van Wagenen has single-handedly changed the perception of this team on his very own. Whether you think the move to pull the trigger on the trade mentioned above, it signifies that this team wants to compete right now. It makes sense, as the landscape of the National League East as never been more volatile. There was an eight game difference between the champion Braves and the second place Washington Nationals. To make things even crazier, there was only five games of separation between the Nationals and the Mets, who finished fourth.

While the Braves signed Josh Donaldson and Brian McCann to solidify their lineup, the look and feel of the Mets, Nationals, and Phillies will all be different come opening day. One of the biggest variables in the landscape of the way the division is going to shake out is free agent Bryce Harper. With Andy Martino reporting on Friday morning that the Mets are expected to receive $60 million back in the deal from the Mariners, and with a clear win now culture installed within the team, there is no reason for the Mets not to pursue Harper.

To start, Harper is one of the most talented players in the game. He’d bring a passion to the team that hasn’t been seen since 2015, when the team had Daniel Murphy pumping the guys up all the way to a National League Pennant. Without that sparkplug on their team, the Mets have been largely unsuccessful since then. Throwing him into a team that just acquired an electric closer, shed some ugly contracts, and possesses one of the best rotations in the game would bring life back into the seats of Citi Field.

Of course, the talent factor then comes into play. At age 26, Harper will already eclipse 1,000 career hits and is also likely to move over 200 career home runs. Considering that Yoenis Cespedes is a non-factor moving into the 2019 season, having an outfield of Brandon Nimmo, Michael Conforto, and Harper could easily create one of the best outfield tandems in the game. Not only would they be one of the best, but also they’d be incredibly young, with Conforto being 26 and Nimmo 25.

Harper has also seen a significant amount of time at Citi Field, being he was a division rival. In 245 plate appearances, Harper has hit .273 while also slugging 12 homeruns and 11 doubles. It is rare that you could secure an elite player that has also had so much experience in your stadium. There is no question that he could hit in Citi Field. Another big factor would be that you are keeping him away from the Nationals or the Phillies.

While many are opposed to Harper because of his personality, he may be exactly what this team needs to take them to the next level. There is no doubt that Harper would bring an excitement to the Mets that has been absent for a few seasons, although it would come at a price tag and personality that many are uncomfortable with.

9 comments on “With Cano trade, there’s no reason not to pursue Harper

  • Pete

    350-400 million. Nice to know its not your money, Can we come to reality now? Please? You know the Wilpons are frugal owners by now?. Doesn’t this Cano deal show you that? It’s addition by subtraction. With this deal it still leaves the Mets with money to upgrade C and CF. Your wishful thinking and unrealistic signing are never going to happen. Harper isn’t a game changer. If he was the Nat’s wouldn’t have collapsed so badly this year. Can we just move on?
    PS If you play GM and give yourself a 150 million dollar budget how are you going to fit Harper in?

  • Pete

    The Mets don’t need excitement.
    They need to win

  • ReneNYM1

    Get Harper I need excitement now.

  • MattyMets

    Aside from the fact that I think he’s a jerk the amount of money he and Machado are seeking is too much for anyone other than maybe Trout. I get that these guys are younger than Pujols and Cabrera were when they signed their ridiculous payroll anchor deals, but even on a year by year basis, how do you justify paying someone 35 or 40 million? That’s like the entire Rays payroll. Also look at the numbers Pujols and Cabrera we’re putting up in their prime. We’ve never seen that from Harper and Machado. They’re excellent players, but they’re not in that class of Barry Bonds types that makes the team around them so much better. In his best years Pujols was an absolute monster (and a good teammate) who made the whole lineup better and opposing pitchers wet their pants. Pujols has 6 seasons of 120+ rbi and Cabrera had 4. Those are Cooperstown seasons. Despite being surrounded by Murphy, Rendon and Zimmerman, Harper has only topped 100 RBI once and never approached 120. He’s only topped 35 homers once. Cabrera and Pujols did it year after year. His MVP year was a good one but Pujols and Cabrera put up triple crown type numbers consistently. They didn’t get hurt, or go through prolonged slumps or cause problems in the clubhouse. They warranted their behemoth contracts, even if they look silly on the back end.

  • Mike Walczak

    Let’s take a closer look at Harper. He has a .279 career average and has driven in 90 runs twice. Sure, he can be a great player. But, there also may be more .249 seasons like he had last season.

    And, for that, we should pay $ 350 million?

    To me, Bryce Harper may be like buying a house in Florida in 2007. It looks good, feels good, but there could be a high probability of buyers remorse.

    I’ll pass.

  • jennifer c

    It’s perfect. Harper would change the perception and winner mentality would be believed for sure. Our SP and Harper!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yes. Dude, I’m totally down for this, and wait for it, it’s not my money, so why do I care? Also, they’re a big market team for the 999th time. Get it done. The NL East thing is big. Harper knows Citi, and you’re right, kill the Phils/Nats/Braves. Sorry, Marlins, not you.

    • Pete

      Yes they’re a big market team for the 999th time but that doesn’t change the fact the Wilpons are not going to spend big money like our rivals in the Bronx.

  • TJ

    Despite their age, I am not a fan of the long term commitment required to acquire this caliber of free agent. However, players like this don’t grow on trees. Machado makes more sense given his position, despite his “flaws”, as was suggested by Eraff, a high AAV short-term deal of say $160-$170mil over four years could work if the markets don’t develop as the agents hope. Now, word is that the Philly owner is already prepared to spend “stupid” money, so a non-Harper non-Machado plan would probably be best to pursue.

    While we don’t know the final cost of Cano monetarily, it does sound like the Mets will have plenty of payroll space in 2019 to bring in a quality catcher, two more quality arms in the pen, and some CF insurance. So, while I don’t like Kelenic in the deal, I give Wags credit for upgrading the 2019-2020 team as well as positioning it well to bring in more talent via free agency.

  • JImO

    Here’s an issue….to start the season, you don’t have Cespedes so that hurts. So if you had Harper, then its great but the Cespedes comes back and you have no place to play him…..I hate the idea od dealing Thor too.

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