Yahoo Sports will be examining the New York Mets’ options at the trade deadline. Here’s the latest installment:
We’ve all heard the one about the 800-pound gorilla in the room, the one sore subject that is always present but no one wants to talk about.
Well, even if they’re not all in the clubhouse, the Mets have four of them in the room, which is four too many.
Cano: .245-6-22, .676 OPS, -0.6 WAR
Contract: Four more years and $80 million remaining
Age: 37 in October
Brodie Van Wagenen negotiated a great deal for Cano back in 2013, getting him 10 years and $240 million from the Seattle Mariners. Then, he decided to take back the remaining five years on Cano’s deal, minus $20 million of salary relief, in one of his first moves as the Mets rookie GM.
Predictably, that has blown up in his face. Cano has been awful at the plate, subpar in the field, and typically lethargic on the basepaths. The Yankees got the best of him -- he batted .309 in nine seasons in the Bronx -- the Mariners got a diminished version, and the Mets are stuck with the dregs of his career.
Of course, the Mets would love to find someone to take Cano off their hands but that’s not going to happen, even if they agree to eat the bulk of his contract. He’s likely going to finish his career in Flushing.
Cespedes: Has not played since July 20, 2018
Contract: One more year remaining on four-year, $110 million deal signed in 2016
Age: 34 in October
The forgotten man on the Mets roster, there’s no point in recounting his injury history over the past couple of years, or the Jacoby Ellsbury-like speed of his recoveries. Since the Mets signed Cespedes as a free agent after the 2015 World Series, he has given them production when he plays -- a .281 batting average, 57 home runs and 157 RBI in 251 games -- but he never plays.
Nor does anyone bother to ask when he will play again. His most recent injury, “multiple ankle fractures’’ suffered in a fall into a hole at his Florida ranch, is shrouded in mystery, but you know what? No one even cares enough to look deeply into it.
If there’s any greater indication of his status with the organization, there it is. Clearly, the Mets no longer want Cespedes and neither does anyone else.
Familia: 2-1, 7.11 ERA, 1.863 WHIP, four blown saves
Contract: In first year of a three-year, $30 million contract
And to think, Van Wagenen passed up Adam Ottavino, Zack Britton and Craig Kimbrel to re-sign Familia, who has been so bad manager Mickey Callaway is terrified to use him in any high-leverage situation. A change of scenery might do Familia good, but that albatross of a contract will keep him hanging around Van Wagenen’s neck until 2022.
If nothing else, at least Familia introduced a new term into the Mets lexicon of failure: Bennett Lesion.
Lowrie: Has not played a game this season
Contract: In the first year of a two-year, $20 million deal
Another Van Wagenen disaster signing, made worse when you consider that a) the Mets really didn’t need another infielder and b) if he really wanted one, Van Wagenen could have signed D.J. LeMahieu, currently among the league leaders in hitting and a potential MVP candidate for the Yankees. Or, he could have had Mike Moustakas or Jonathan Schoop, both of whom are having productive seasons.
Instead, Brodie once again opted to sign a former client, who began suffering a cascade of injuries early in spring training and still is nowhere near ready to play in 2019. Good luck moving him out of Flushing.