Last night I started working on this Mets franchise, and decided I was ready to part ways with Yoenis Cespedes. I shopped him around with the intent on keeping roughly 20% of his contract, and received an interesting offer from the Cubs. They were willing to offer Jason Heyward, straight up, in return for Cespedes. Heyward is making 2/3rds of Cespedes’ contract, he’s almost 4 years younger, and he has a player option after the 2019 season. If Heyward accepts it, he’ll be owed about $120m over 5 years.
Since cutting money right now to possibly make a big signing after 2018 is a short term goal. Getting an extra few million is a pretty good plan, and, if Heyward happened to decline his option, we’d have even more money in the future. If he accepts option, we’d still have a very good defense right fielder, and maybe, just maybe, the prospect of playing closer to his birthplace, Ridgewood, NJ, would spark his bat.
To hedge my bets, and since I was already willing to retain some of Cespedes’ contract, I decided to look around the Cubs prospect list and see if they would throw one in so that, if Heyward did decline the option, I wouldn’t be empty handed. I was able to add the Cubs’ 2017 1st round (30th overall) pick, Alex Lange, a potential 3-star SP, while only needing to retain 15% of Cespedes’ contract. Just like that, the deal was done.
During the start of the regular season, relief pitcher, A.J. Ramos went down with the torn flexor tendon in his throwing arm, and he’ll require Tommy John surgery and be out for the season.
As I advanced a little bit into April, Jason Vargas was ready to come off the DL, but I didn’t really have a spot on the 25-man for him. Instead, I decided to shop him, and his, up to, $22m over 3 year contract. I wasn’t expecting much, and was pleasantly surprised to see the Blue Jays offer Lourdes Gurriel Jr., so I jumped at that offer. Gurriel is a nice young talent, and opens the door to possibly trying to move Todd Frazier sooner than later, and he could end up being our future third basemen.
Through April 15th, we’re 9-6 and currently tied for the NL East lead.