Yesterday, Joel Sherman reported that the Mets were in on Tomoyuki Sugano, the longtime ace of the Yomiuri Giants. He’s likely an SP3 in the majors and might be a decent alternative to Trevor Bauer, should the Mets prefer George Springer as their big free agent acquisition. Sugano has a solid MLB fastball but it’s his curve that makes him stand out.

For fans itchy for the Mets to make a move, perhaps the best thing about Sugano is that he comes with a deadline. According to Sherman:

As part of an agreement between MLB and Nippon Professional Baseball, a posted player has one month from his posting to sign or he returns to play in Japan. So, a contract with Sugano must be completed by 5 p.m. on Jan. 7, which means an agreement must be in place probably several days before that to provide time for physical review of the pitcher.

What do we call him, though? There used to be a pitcher named Tomo Ohla, so maybe it’s Tomo. But I’m hoping it’s actually the second half of his first name that becomes his nickname. Undoubtedly, that’s because former “Card of the Week” author Doug Parker has a cat named Yuki. Not sure how good Doug’s meme game is but it seems like the possibilities would be endless.

10 comments on “Wednesday catch-all thread (12/23/20)

  • Brian Joura

    Thinking of running a mailbag column before the year is out. If you have a Mets question – please send it to mets360@ — remove the space after the @ sign.

    If I get a bunch of questions, it’ll run this Sunday. If I only get a few, it’ll run Tuesday.

  • Steve S.

    I’m actually OK with signing Sugano instead of Bauer, as long as we get Springer.

    Sugano will get $10-12 million/year for 2-3 years, “saving” us maybe $20 million/year for a shorter contract than Bauer’s. We can use that money to sign another very good starting pitcher and another good reliever.

    • David Groveman

      I’m with Steve.

      A rotation of deGrom, Stroman, Sugano, Peterson and Lugo/Matz/Szapucki (let me dream Brian) and a bullpen with Diaz, May, (Lugo?), Betances, Familia, Castro, Brach, Gsellman, Blevins, Eickoff etc… might be “good enough”. It looks all the better with Syndergaard back on the mound.

      I do think the Mets kinda “need” Springer because I cannot make a lineup that I’m happy with, without adding a legitimate right handed bat.

      • TJ

        I don’t think that rotation is good enough. I also don’t think that pen is good enough. As Metsense has repeated, pitching is the biggest deficit. Bauer is not a need to have, but the Mets do need to add two legit starters and a legit pen arm, other than Lugo. This Japanese guy is intriguing but you never know how they translate to MLB. I’ve seen way too many folks pencil Peterson is as a starter. He was a nice surprise last year and I thinkh he has a future in the rotation. I’d let him, Matz, and Lugo battle it out for the bottom of the rotation. I’d prefer to I add a Sugano type and perhaps an Odorizzi type or even Kluber type, hoping Matz wins the #5 job, Lugo shifts to the pen and Peterson goes to AAA to refine his skills and serve as depth. Syndergaard breathing down everyone’s neck for a spot. Then add a legit arm to the pen. Hand makes the most sense due to his LHP, but Big Liam would be awfully nice too. I would consider a staff that deep 1 – 12 as elite.

        A legit RH bat is a must, Springer looks like the best fit, but it doesn’t need to be him. There are others that can fill that role via free agency or even trade. That should provide plenty of offense for the above mentioned staff.

  • JimO

    The Mets should put a suggestion box at Citi Field this year where fans can actually drop off suggestions for Cohen.

  • Aging Bull
    • TexasGusCC

      Good stuff Bull.

  • Mike W

    I like the idea of two starters like Sugano, Walker, Odorizzi, Kluber. I think Bauer is too much money and too much of a risk.

    If Springer signs with the Jays, I see the Mets putting the press on LeMahieu and maybe Bradley.

    The good thing is that they are doing their due diligence and seem to be talking to everybody.

  • MattyMets

    I watched some more in-depth film of Sugano and was really impressed. He’s also younger than I thought and, based on predictions, cheaper than I would have expected. There’s a lot of buzz around him as a superstar on the Yankees of Japan, yet he’s not commanding the type of contract Tanaka did. Could be a really shrewd signing.

    I think Springer is a must, but my concern is that if we do what most fans are clapping for and sign both him and Bauer, there won’t be money left for additional needs or to extend Conforto, Syndergaard, Stroman.

  • Metsense

    Sugano seems be to a good option just like other good mid rotation options at the similar price range. One of them should be signed now, even if it is the next move. Springer is the coveted free agent for the Mets needs but if they lose out on him then they should pivot and hard press for Bauer. Springer or Bauer are the impact free agents that can win you a World Series.
    Springer and another mid rotation pitcher -or- Bauer and Justin Turner should get to the World Series.

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