In the book Prodigy by Marie Lu, there is a line that reads “June will break your heart. I can see it already. She’ll shatter you into a million pieces.”
For the New York Mets, no saying could ring anymore true. The Mets finished the month 10-18, by far their worst month of the season. They saw their bullpen go from shaky to the absolute worst in Major League Baseball, as a lot of their losses stemmed from the disappointment brought on by the bullpen. Leading the charge for their disappointing bullpen has been the prized possession of the offseason, Edwin Diaz.
In June, Diaz coughed up an ERA of 8.38, while allowing an opponent batting average of .316. While Diaz has been the poster boy for the bullpen struggles this season, he certainly can share the blame with the rest of the bullpen and manager Mickey Callaway, whose bullpen management has been spotty at best. The team, with its struggles in the month of June, has brought back memories of their 2018 counterparts. In case you don’t remember, the 2018 version of the New York Mets struggles mightily in the month of June. They struggled their way to a 5-21 record in June, and were out of contention much like the current version of the Mets are.
Since the Mets were so out of it last season, they decided to sell limited parts of the team. They sold Jeurys Familia, Asdrubal Cabrera, and Jose Bautista to contenders while they remained basement buddies with the Florida Marlins. While it was smart to trade those players without a doubt, all it basically did for the Mets was get rid of contracts that were expiring at the end of the season. This limited the team to some returns that weren’t exactly exciting, and the team has still really not reaped any benefit from.
Now that they have a new general manager, there is hope that the Mets will become more efficient sellers at this year’s deadline. Of course, the Mets are once again in the position where they feel like they are not far away from competing, but there are glaring roster issues. Last season, they were too nervous to tap into their core of pitchers when it came to trade, hence the lack of an exciting return on a trade. This year, Zack Wheeler is once again receiving significant interest, and it seems once again like the Mets are in no rush to trade him.
The difference this year compared to last with Wheeler is that he can walk away from the team once the season ends. For the Mets to not get a good return on Wheeler, who was once a prized return himself in a trade, would be a foolish move for the franchise. Wheeler is not only a desirable target for teams because of his talent and the potential for him to heat up again in the second half, but also because his contract is extremely team friendly. At $5.975 million, Wheeler could be a cheap addition for a team who is looking for one more starter to fill their rotation come the end of the season.
The past two Junes have been disastrous for the Mets. Last season, they made the mistake of not going “all in” on selling at the deadline, and as a result, have found themselves in nearly the same predicament. A great way to change the narrative this season would be to make a splash trade to bring some prospects back, and a great player to start with is Wheeler.