It’s early, but the New York Mets should already put these players on the trade block.
The New York Mets are off to a rip-roaring good start this season. At 14-5, New York has the best record in all of baseball and are five games clear of their closest competition in the division. So why in the world should the front office mess with success?
As we all know, it’s a long season. If the Mets want to be part of the Fall Classic, there are still some holes remaining in that roster. If swinging a trade at this point in the season adds an extra arm to the bullpen or another starter to the rotation, New York’s front office should pull the trigger.
There are a handful of players who play a redundant role on this year’s team and there might be a couple of prospects down on the farm who could bring back some valuable pieces as well. Which five New York Mets players should already be on the trade block?
New York Mets rumors: David Peterson, left-handed pitcher
David Peterson, a former first-round pick, should already be on the trade block. The left-hander was taken with the 20th-overall selection in the 2017 MLB Draft, but his inability to throw strikes limits Peterson’s value on this year’s team.
The starting rotation is also a position of strength for this Mets team. Once Jacob deGrom and Taijuan Walker return from the IL, New York will go six deep in their rotation.
Being a former first-round pick will still net the Mets a solid return in a trade. The southpaw has three-pitch mix with a fringy curveball as well and Peterson can keep the ball on the ground.
The left-hander also has minor league options remaining, something that would undoubtedly be sought after by several teams looking to rebuild this season. While David Peterson’s value is not great, it could still see the Mets land a solid return.
New York Mets rumors: Dominic Smith, first baseman
It was rumored over the offseason that former first-round pick Dominic Smith was on the trade block, but nothing ever materialized. Surely there’s a team out there that would find value adding Smith to their squad.
The 26-year-old is under team control through the 2024 season and is making a modest $3.95M this season in Flushing. Smith just isn’t an outfielder, and he’ll never get regular reps at first base with Pete Alonso on the team.
Smith has shown in the past that can handle both left and right-handed pitching, as there’s little difference in his career splits. But surprisingly the left-handed hitting Smith struggled mightily against right-handers in 2021, hitting just .218 with a .622 OPS.
Despite the addition of the universal DH, it just doesn’t make sense to hang onto Dominic Smith any longer. The batting average and power numbers aren’t there in the early-going, so the New York Mets should abandon ship and get what they can now before Smith’s numbers continue to decline.
New York Mets rumors: J.D. Davis, designated hitter
The addition of the universal DH has given J.D. Davis a regular spot in the New York Mets lineup, but the front office should cash in on the 29-year-old’s early-season success and trade him before his numbers go down.
Just like Dominic Smith, Davis is a redundant piece on this year’s New York team. Davis was also rumored to be on the trade block earlier this spring. Davis is under team control for two more season and has minor league options remaining. Several teams would line up to swing a deal for the slugger.
Davis has come out of the gates swinging. He has an OPS of .805 so far in 2022, but last season’s reverse splits and high strikeout-rate don’t offer much hope over the long haul.
J.D. Davis is little more than a bat in the New York Mets lineup. His fielding is subpar meaning that the designated hitter is about the only position Davis can reliably play. If Davis could be flipped for an extra bullpen arm, the Mets should part ways with the former third-round pick.
New York Mets rumors: Ronny Mauricio, shortstop
This one might sting a little, but the return that the New York Mets could receive would be worth the short-term sadness of parting with one of the team’s top prospects. Ronny Mauricio is a fine talent, but he’s blocked at the major league level.
Mauricio is a shortstop, and Mets fans know that Francisco Lindor is staying put for quite some time. While some fans would advocate for Mauricio to change positions, the Mets have yet to do that. Other than being a designated hitter, all of Mauricio’s minor league starts have come at shortstop.
Mauricio could land a big fish. Everyone has seen the Cincinnati Reds selling off pieces left and right. Perhaps a trade package including the Mets top infield prospect could bring back a player like Tyler Mahle or Luis Castillo.
Ronny Mauricio could switch positions and stay in the Mets organization. But he may offer more value to the franchise as a key piece in a potential trade. While it’s tough pill to swallow, Mauricio might be New York’s best trade chip.
New York Mets rumors: Mark Vientos, third baseman
Mark Vientos is unbelievable raw power. We’re talking about the type of player that could put up 30-plus home runs every year. He’s also he type of player that could strikeout 200-plus times in a season.
Vientos plays third base, kind of. Honestly, he’s little more than a bat and doesn’t necessarily fit anywhere defensively. With Pete Alonso holding down the fort at first base and Brett Baty looking to become New York’s everyday third baseman in the not-too-distant future, Vientos is most likely ticketed to be a DH at the big league level.
Vientos’ numbers so far this season at Triple-A Syracuse are unremarkable to say the least. A 34.4% strikeout-rate and a wRC+ of just 51 isn’t going to get him a promotion to the majors anytime soon.
Mark Vientos, however, just like Ronny Mauricio, might offer more value to the New York Mets in a trade than he ever would on the field. Small market teams are always on the lookout for a young prospect like Vientos. He could be part of trade package that could bolster New York’s World Series contending roster in 2022.