Posted on December 9, 2017, by Bryan Zarpentine
With the MLB Winter Meetings next week, the hot stove figures to start heating up. One team that has some work to do this offseason and could become more active is the New York Mets. While the Mets have multiple needs, the latest rumors link the Mets with a slew of second basemen. With former top prospect Amed Rosario ready to take the reigns at shortstop, the Mets want to find the right middle infield partner for him. Among the second basemen linked with the Mets are Ian Kinsler, Jason Kipnis, Josh Harrison, and Starlin Castro.
According to recent reports, the Mets have pursued Kinsler the most this offseason. He has one year and $11 million left on his contract, so the Mets wouldn’t have to make a long-term commitment to him. Also, the rebuilding Tigers would certainly be willing to part with him for the right price. However, recent reports suggest talks between the Mets and Tigers haven’t progressed much so far.
Kipnis is another intriguing option for the Mets. He has a great track record and would help provide some veteran leadership for the Mets. With the Indians moving him to the outfield late last season, he may not have a future as Cleveland’s second baseman, potentially making him available in a trade. However, Kipnis has three years and close to $40 million left on his contract. He’s also coming off an injury-plagued season, which no doubt makes the Mets hesitant.
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Harrison is a name that has only popped up recently in connection with the Mets. His role next year with the Pirates is uncertain, so Pittsburgh may be willing to part with him. He also has just one more guaranteed year on his contract, so again, there’s no long-term commitment for the Mets. Harrison is also coming off one of his better offensive seasons in which he hit a career-high 16 home runs. He would certainly fit what the Mets are looking for in a second baseman.
Finally, there’s Castro, who’s going to the Marlins in the Giancarlo Stanton trade. It’s unclear if the Marlins will keep him or look to flip him, but there are already reports that the Mets will call Miami to ask about him. He’s coming off arguably his best season and should be entering his prime. Castro has also had no problem playing in New York the past two seasons. If the Marlins are willing to trade him, the Mets should have great interest.
Of course, the Mets also have internal options at second base. Asdrubal Cabrera, who’s currently penciled in at third base, could easily move back to the keystone. Wilmer Flores is also an option. However, he can struggle defensively at times and has never spent a full season as an everyday player. The Mets may see him as more of a utility player. New York could also look for a second basemen on the free agent market, although pickings are slim outside of former Met Neil Walker.
At the moment, there’s nothing imminent with regard to the Mets trading for a second baseman. But they should be anxious to get something done. The Mets are likely to spend money to improve their bullpen, so trading for a second baseman makes sense. With the Winter Meetings almost upon us, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the Mets pull the trigger on a trade that gets them a second baseman.