Mets: 1 trade to make and 1 prospect to promote to boost playoff odds

New York Mets (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
New York Mets (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /
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Jon Gray
Jon Gray (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /

It hasn’t been pretty, but the Mets have found a way to win games and put themselves in first place with a chance to improve their playoff odds given the right additions.

Don’t look now, but the Mets have slowly begun pulling away in first place in the NL East. New York currently has a 33-25 record and are a comfortable four games ahead of the second-place Phillies. They’re the only team in the division above .500, and with a few improvements they will increase their odds for a deep postseason run.

Despite numerous injuries, the team has still found a way to win games. Their offense is among the worst in baseball as the team has scored the fewest runs in the majors (224). Call it luck or timely hitting, it’s gotten the job done, but it won’t last if that area does not get improved.

Those numbers are bound to improve a bit with the returns of Brandon Nimmo, Michael Conforto and Jeff McNeil who are all on the 10-day injured list. I expect the Mets to make some moves adding depth, however if they’re going to make a bigger move at the deadline they could benefit from another arm.

Jon Gray should be an affordable pitcher for the Mets at the trade deadline.

If you’re familiar with the Mets, you know they feature one of the best pitchers baseball has ever seen in Jacob deGrom. His 0.54 ERA and 0.531 WHIP puts him in a league of his own, but what about the rest of the rotation?

Marcus Stroman and Taijuan Walker have each sported sub-2.5 ERA’s this season, but the backend of the rotation has struggled. Both David Peterson and Joey Lucchesi have ERA’s north of 5-plus.

There’s still no timetable for injured starters Carlos Carrasco and Noah Syndergaard. Make no doubt about it, when those two are healthy it could make for a lethal  Mets’ rotation. The problem is no one knows when they’ll return and how they’ll perform after so much time off.

Instead they could get an affordable option in Rockies starter Jon Gray. In 12 starts this season, Gray has posted a 4.29 ERA and 1.286 WHIP. The former third-overall pick will make $6 million before becoming a free agent at the end of this season.

Gray was recently placed on the 10-day IL with an elbow issue, though X-rays came back clean and the righty says he’s feeling fine.

If healthy, Gray should be a low-risk, high-reward type of addition for the Mets and improve a weak backend of the rotation.