Wednesday, May 18 2022
Billy Eppler treated art turning to side in front of Citi Field background

Billy Eppler treated art turning to side in front of Citi Field background

In the days after the Mets agreed to terms with free agents Starling Marte, Mark Canha, and Eduardo Escobar, the team pivoted immediately to pitching.

When the lockout ends, that’s where they still will be.

Before Dec. 1, team sources said that the Mets were likely done adding significant, expensive free agents, particularly on the position player side. That remains true.

It’s probable that Max Scherzer will end up as the most famous player acquired this offseason (that’s not too shabby, by the way), and that Marte, Escobar, and Canha will be the most significant offensive additions, sources say.

General manager Billy Eppler is not done improving the team. He and his staff are looking for a starting pitcher, with former Seattle Mariners lefty Yusei Kikuchi a distinct possibility. The Mets will also add an arm or two to the bullpen.

Eppler could also look to add complementary lineup pieces. But the team hasn’t been seriously considering headline-grabbing names like Kris Bryant or Carlos Correa since November.

Considering Steve Cohen’s ambitions for the team this year, directives could always change. But the owner has already spent more than $250 million on this year’s team, and has not shown an inclination to divert from Eppler’s plan to build a deep, balanced roster, sources say.

One team source cautioned not to completely rule out a pursuit of Japanese outfielder Seiya Suzuki. It’s hard, though, to see how Suzuki would fit the roster as currently constructed.

Aug 2, 2021; Yokohama, Japan; Team Japan outfielder Seiya Suzuki (51) celebrates after scoring a run against USA in a second round baseball game during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Yokohama Baseball Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mandi Wright-USA TODAY SportsAug 2, 2021; Yokohama, Japan; Team Japan outfielder Seiya Suzuki (51) celebrates after scoring a run against USA in a second round baseball game during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Yokohama Baseball Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mandi Wright-USA TODAY Sports

Aug 2, 2021; Yokohama, Japan; Team Japan outfielder Seiya Suzuki (51) celebrates after scoring a run against USA in a second round baseball game during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Yokohama Baseball Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mandi Wright-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets are willing to listen to trade offers on Jeff McNeil, J.D. Davis, and Dominic Smith.

Realistically, though, the industry will be in a mad dash toward spring training when action resumes. During the lockout, clubs aren’t allowed to talk about potential trades. These factors could create a more challenging climate to move a player than in typical offseasons.

It appears likely that we’ll see Eppler and Buck Showalter utilizing at least one or two of those players in versatile roles, starting or on the bench, depending on matchups.

The same goes for Marte, Canha, and Escobar, whose ability to play multiple positions was a significant element of their appeal to the Mets

Source: Yahoo Sports

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