After the New York Mets hired David Stearns as President of Baseball Operations, it essentially forced Billy Eppler's hand. Eppler did not want to stay around when the decision making was stripped of him. As for Stearns, he likely wants to hire his own general manager. It's only fair.
So, in similar fashion to Buck Showalter, Eppler left Queens. Showalter has since reappeared on the radar of at least one managerial opening (the Angels), but it's unclear if Eppler will do the same. A year off and a fresh set of openings could do the former Mets executive some good.
With money at his disposal, Eppler was able to sign big-name free agents like Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer. He also let Jacob deGrom walk. Then, at the trade deadline, Eppler packaged Verlander and Scherzer with that same cash to essentially buy some top-100 prospects in Drew Gilbert and Luisangel Acuña.
Overall, it's tough to criticize Eppler's tenure too much. He did what was asked of him, including tearing down a contender with less than a month's notice prior to the trade deadline. As he exits, these Mets could follow him out the door.
Carlos Carrasco will likely not return to the Mets
Carrasco's rocky tenure with the Mets should come to an end this winter. Cookie is coming off a down 2023 season, and has struggled with injuries since he came over from Cleveland. Carrasco could provide value elsewhere -- perhaps outside of such a large media market -- and catch on as a back-of-the-rotation starting pitcher. That just won't come in New York.
Carrasco's season ended in a freak dumbbell accident which broke his pinky finger. Showalter was blunt at the time when asked about Carrasco's Mets future.
“He’s going to pitch again next year for somebody,” Showalter said. “We’ll see if it’s for us or not.”
I hate to play spoiler, but it won't be the Mets. New York has its eyes on some bigger fish, and with Carrasco hitting the open market, expect him to find a new home.