-Johan's Buyout -5.5
-Jon Niese- 5
This is the meat of my AAOP and consists of a big three team trade between the Mets, Royals, and the Reds. KC is looking for infield help and Brandon Phillips is exactly the type of player Dayton Moore likes. In return the Royals give up Alex Gordon to the Reds. Gordon is coming off a down year but still managed 3.4 fWAR. This is where the Metsies come in. We give up Syndergaard , Daniel Murphy and Kevin Plawecki for Jay Bruce. The Reds replace Bruce with Gordon, and Phillips with Murphy while gaining an elite prospect in Syndergaard (who looks poised to be in the majors by next year) and another strong prospect in Plawecki. We would also need to throw in Rafael Montero to the Royals as their side of the trade looks a little light. While this trade really hurts the farm, the Mets lock in a young relatively cheap power hitting outfielder in Bruce. The 26 year old is locked up till 2017 and is just entering his prime.
Mets Receive -Jay Bruce ($10 million for 2014)
Reds Receive- Alex Gordon
Royals Receive- Brandon Phillips
My next trade involves sending Ike Davis to the Rockies for Josh Outman. The Rockies have stated they don't mind increasing payroll and Ike would be a good rebound candidate in Coor's Field. Outman had a 4.33 ERA but a 3.62 xFIP. The latter suggests a move away from Colorado is all he really needs.
Rockier Receive- Ike Davis
Mets Receive - Josh Outman ($675k for 2014)
Updated Payroll -$61 Million
Marlon Byrd- 2 Years/18 million
Josh Johnson-2 Years/12 Million
I like Johnson for two years. We need high ceiling pitchers to make up for the loss of Syndergaard and Montero and Johnson seems to be worth that risk. The peripherals are still there and his hr rate should go down in Citi.
Brendan Ryan-1 Year/4 Million.
The bat's gotten even worse but the defense is still there. I like the defense up the middle with Lagares and Ryan and we can afford the hit in the lineup with the added offense in the corners.
Total Payroll-$80.5 Million
1b-Josh Satin and Lucas Duda should be able to hold down first base if platooned properly.
2b-Wilmer Flores's bat should come around but any resurgence from Tejada will go along way towards adding some depth to that position along with Turner.
Juan Lagares -2.5
Wilmer Flores -1.0
Replacement Level Team-52
Projected 2014 Record-86 Wins
While the infield with Flores and Ryan is than ideal I believe this plan sets up a good foundation for immediate contention. With a little luck and young players like Wheeler and D'Arnaud improving we could sneak our way into a wild card spot. While I would have loved to compliment the Bruce trade with a Choo signing (think of that outfield!) I was just a bit short on the budget. However I believe this AAOP justifies gutting the farm. By trading for a young player like Bruce you give yourself a lot more room to improve on the free-agent end with mid-level signings. Plus young talent like Bruce is getting harder to acquire through free agency with increasingly large contracts and teams locking up talent early. The pitching staff still looks solid and borders on elite with Harvey in 2015. The only other free-agent signings are all short-term deals. This plan allows us to go right into contention even without Harvey. Losing Syndergaard and Montero hurt but as we've seen before pitching prospects are incredibly risky. Thor seemed liked a sure thing but banking on him and being passive on the trade-end this year just seemed like another waste of Wright's prime years. Dubz would not approve.