Robinson Cano commerce grades: Mets baffle with gutsy transfer; Mariners add by subtracting | MLB


Jerry Dipoto can’t be stopped.

The Mariners common supervisor continues his dealing methods, wiggling his approach out of Robinson Cano’s contract, transport him and Edwin Diaz to the Mets in trade for 2018 first-round decide Jarred Kelenic, Jay Bruce, Anthony Swarzak, Justin Dunn and Gerston Bautista. 

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From the Flushing facet, it’s kind of of a complicated transfer which is sensible and would not. Enable us to clarify …

New York Mets: C+

On Robinson Cano: Cano carried out effectively regardless of his suspension in the course of 2018. In 41 video games after his return from the suspension, Cano hit .317 with an .860 OPS, with six house runs and 27 RBIs. He was additionally recovering from a fractured wrist, so these numbers are particularly encouraging.

Cano has additionally largely been sturdy in his profession, as 2018 was the primary time since 2006 he is performed lower than 150 video games in a season. The commerce additionally provides the Mets some flexibility of their infield, ought to Cano be keen to maneuver to first. If not, maybe breakthrough rookie Jeff McNeil may transfer to 3rd base to try to alleviate the third base points the Mets have had, or he may play as an excellent utility man. McNeil hit .329 in his rookie season, so his bat can be vital to the Mets’ plans shifting ahead.

The Mariners are consuming a reported $20 million, which turns Cano’s deal from $24 million per yr over the following 5 seasons to $20 million per yr. That helps, however how a lot? Although the Mets are sending Jay Bruce and Anthony Swarzak (who’re owned $36.5 million mixed over the following two seasons), you need to hope Father Time would not meet up with Cano, and his manufacturing matches the {dollars} he is owed on his contract.

Cano may play some first in the event that they want it, assuming he’d make the transfer, and break up time with Jeff McNeil at second if want be.

On Edwin Diaz: Cano’s prowess on the plate is simple, however Diaz is the true centerpiece of this deal. Diaz, one in all baseball’s greatest relievers in 2018, is beneath workforce management by way of 2022, which provides the Mets a younger, explosive, cost-controlled reliever on the again finish of the bullpen, one thing they’ve desperately wanted.

It is onerous to argue in opposition to Diaz’s success — 1.96 ERA in 73 1/three innings, with 57 saves in 2019 — and as with most relievers, there is a sure volatility year-to-year for bullpen guys. However this transfer helps the Mets proper now and provides them a fairly certain factor within the ninth inning for the following few years.

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All issues thought-about, outdoors of an abysmal June (5-21 document), the Mets have been a reliable baseball workforce in 2018. So long as they maintain on to their prime three guys within the rotation (Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler), and so they keep wholesome, this can be a workforce that might problem for a wild card in 2019, or perhaps even the division.

On who they gave up: Jay Bruce had a really unhealthy yr in 2018, riddled with accidents and common ineffectiveness. When wholesome, Bruce is a strong slugger, hitting to a profession OPS+ of 109. Not unhealthy. Is he value $14 million per yr for the following two years? If he can keep wholesome, he is a 30-plus house run risk, in order that’s not a foul factor. Plus, in Seattle, he can DH or play proper subject within the wake of Nelson Cruz’s free company. 

Anthony Swarzak had a disastrous first yr with the Mets, and that is placing it calmly.

The important thing for the Mets right here is buying and selling 2018 first-round decide Jarred Kelenic, who some consider is destined to turn out to be a star. The Mets, who’ve lengthy been devoid of younger, upcoming expertise, have began to construct a strong core with Michael Conforto, Amed Rosario, Brandon Nimmo and their pitching employees, so buying and selling a prospect with an ETA of 2022 is not the worst factor.

This can be a pretty blended bag with a blended message for the Mets. Kelenic, although removed from a major-league debut, was rocketing up prospect rankings. As all the time, prospects are suspects and Kelenic has a protracted solution to go, however to mortgage even a little bit of your future for a an growing older star coming off a PED suspension is a calculated, questionable and gutsy transfer.

They lose factors for taking up Cano’s contract however acquire factors for getting him at a reduction, together with Edwin Diaz to lock down video games in 2019.

For brand spanking new Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen, this can be a watermark second. Very like Nuke LaLoosh, he introduced his presence with authority. Whether or not that is factor or a foul factor is but to be seen.

Seattle Mariners: B

Any time a workforce can get a prime prospect again in trade for dumping wage, that is factor. The one caveat: As per normal, prospects are suspects, and Jarred Kelenic and Justin Dunn nonetheless have to show they will someday be influence main league ballplayers.

Kelenic, at the moment ranked No. 62 on MLB Pipeline’s prime 100 prospect checklist, Kelenic raked within the Gulf Coast League, hitting over .400. However he is 19, and much can go unsuitable between now and an MLB arrival. Nonetheless, it is an awesome constructing for a possible new Mariners core, one thing Seattle hasn’t had in a very long time.

Justin Dunn, MLB Pipeline’s 89th-ranked prospect, may make his debut in 2019, however he nonetheless has some work to do. He struggled at AA, placing up a 4.22 ERA and a 1.360 WHIP in 15 begins. Nonetheless, first rate upside as a possible beginning pitcher helps Dunn and the Mariners right here.

A very powerful a part of this commerce is getting out of the ultimate 5 years of Cano’s deal, even when they needed to cowl some cash (a reported $20 million) to get it moved. With the Mariners possible not competing within the AL West in opposition to the Astros and even the upstart A’s, it is onerous to see why conserving Cano round would actually assist them push for a division title.

Getting Jay Bruce is an efficient transfer, as effectively. When wholesome, Bruce is an excellent energy bat and a good outfielder. This raises some questions within the outfield: Will Mitch Haniger transfer to middle whereas Bruce performs proper? Will Dee Gordon transfer again to second? It provides the Mariners flexibility and energy following the pending departure of Nelson Cruz.

Dipoto nonetheless has a number of issues to contemplate, equivalent to shifting the aforementioned Haniger or the underrated Kyle Seager. There are many strikes and items that may be moved for the Mariners who will give them first rate returns.

Total: TBD

This strikes is sensible for the Mets in the event that they’re 100 p.c in on extra strikes this offseason to bolster their lineup. That appears to be the case, however who is aware of? The Mets have operated confusingly since their 2015 World Collection look, however the truth that they’re keen so as to add a bat and contract like Cano’s may bode effectively for his or her willingness to compete for a title quickly.

The Mariners are getting an excellent prospect, and so they received out of a bad-ish contract whereas understanding they may not be profitable any time quickly. It hurts to surrender a expertise like Diaz, however that is the price of doing enterprise in immediately’s MLB. Crew management is what it is all about.

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