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Steve Cohen ‘encouraged’ by club David Stearns built during first offseason with Mets

The Mets didn’t quite have the offseason many expected in their first year under new President of Baseball Operations David Stearns.

After missing out on top free-agent starting pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto, who landed with the Los Angeles Dodgers on a historic 12-year deal, the team focused on more shorter-term and under-the-radar signings than in recent years.

Stearns’ biggest focus was to completely revamp a bullpen which has been up-and-down in recent years and to improve the club's defense in an effort to increase its run prevention.

He addressed just that with the signings of Adam Ottavino, Jorge Lopez, Jake Diekman, and Shintaro Fujinami as well as other intriguing depth options, and by bringing by Glove Glove centerfielder Harrison Bader.

While some fans are a bit down on the team's chances heading into this season, owner Steve Cohen told Howie Rose on a recent appearance on the Meet at the Apple podcast that he’s excited about the squad they’ve built.

“I’m encouraged with what we’ve built here,” Cohen said. “The names aren’t as high-profile as previous years, but I like what we’re doing and I’m excited by the depth on the club whether it be in the bullpen or the position players.

“I think we’ve built a club that’s going to be really competitive and fun to watch.”

With this year being more of a transitional year for the organization, New York is expected to give some of their younger talent such as Brett Baty and Mark Vientos extended opportunities to show what they can do.

The club also has numerous top prospects such as Drew Gilbert, Christian Scott, Mike Vasil, and Luisangel Acuna who are knocking on the door down in Triple-A and are closing in on their big league debuts.

The opportunity to see some of that young talent shine is another aspect of this team that Cohen is looking forward to watching.

"We've got to see what we've got," he said. "Everybody loves prospects and wants a great farm system, but the second part of that is then you've got to let them play. That's our plan and what we're going to do, but I do think we've built a really competitive ball club that’s going to excite people and be fun to watch."

You can check out the rest of the discussion between Rose and Cohen here: