Deals That Make Sense

The Mets need an outfielder, a reliever, and possibly a starting pitcher, in that order. All agreed? They need to obtain these pieces without flushing the farm system. I have some ideas.

Baltimore Orioles: Chad Bradford and one of: Jay Payton, Aubrey Huff, or Kevin Millar.

ChadBrad is exactly what the Mets need right now, and won’t command a top prospect to pry away. Similarly Payton and Millar are over 35 but are perfect for filling in at one of the outfield corners. Huff has also lost value in recent years, but would be a nice platoon partner for Fernando Tatis and/or keep right field warm for Ryan Church. A deal to bring in all three could certainly be done without giving up any of the Mets’ top young talents. Heck, I’d invite the O’s to throw Ramon Hernandez into the deal if they seek salary relief.

Mariners: Jose Vidro and either Jarrod Washburn or Carlos Silva

Vidro has zero value, and could be released. The Ms are so ticked at the Yankees over Washburn, they might consider taking a lesser package from the Mets to send him to New York. If not, maybe they’d like the idea of having Silva and his fat contract off their hands. Yeah, he’s stunk this year but maybe a move to the NL could help him. The Mets only need him as a fifth starter, not an ace. Considering this deal would be about a salary dump, it shouldn’t cost much in prospects. And please, Seattle, you can KEEP Raul Ibanez. If the Mets really want a former lefty-hitting slugger-turned singles hitter who can’t play the field, they’ll ask Shawn Green to come out of retirement.

Indians: Rafael Betancourt, David Dellucci, John Halama

Betancourt is having a terrible season and at age 33 is not getting any younger. But, he has good stuff. A move to the NL and to a winning team could be exactly what he needs to recapture the magic that made him a lights-out setup man — think: Guillermo Mota 2006. Dellucci could be a nice LH bat while we wait for Church and/or a platoon partner for Tatis. Halama has been out of MLB for a while but is 7-3 with a 4.12 ERA in AAA, averaging close to 7 innings per start. He’d be a nice backup plan if something is up with John Maine; or he could be a LOOGY / long man in the pen. The Indians also have Anthony Reyes and Brendan Donnelly tucked away on the Buffalo Bisons roster. Any of these men could be easily pried away for a song, I’m sure.

Rangers: Eddie Guardado and Nelson Cruz

I’m not sure why the Rangers are so hell-bent on holding on to “Everyday Eddie” when he’s 37 years old and they’re 11.5 games out of first. I read it as a feeble attempt to raise Guardado’s value. Nelson Cruz is tearing it up at a hitter’s park in a hitter’s league, but even still should be at least as good as Marcus Thames. The Rangers might be interested in a young first baseman — how about a package centered around Mike Carp?

There are a number of other players out there who could a) come cheaply and b) help the Mets. These trade partners above, though, seem to have players who can address several of the Mets’ needs at once. We’ll see what transpires in the coming days.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. debmc July 30, 2008 at 8:01 am
    Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Noooooooooo Jay Payton! If his stupid ass ever ends up on this team again, I’m becoming a Yankee fan.

    And that’s some serious poop.

    Jay’s one of the dumbest players I’ve ever had the misfortune to be subjected to on a semi-daily basis (I say that because he was so oft injured), and I THOUGHT the Mets were over guys like that *snort.*

  2. joe July 30, 2008 at 10:46 am
    c’mon deb, with age comes wisdom!
  3. debmc July 30, 2008 at 11:00 am
    No, Joe – with age comes AGE. Can’t make a silk purse out of sow’s ear, and age ain’t no cure for STUPID. Honestly, Jay Payton has the worst baseball instincts I’ve ever seen, and is without a doubt the dumbest baserunner in the history of baseball, with the possible exception of a handful of pitchers.