Today, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that the Mets are getting “plenty of trade interest” in one of their most attractive trade pieces, relief ace Addison Reed. In a development that will surprise few except for the most optimistic of Mets fans, Sandy Alderson has been totally transparent about the fact that the team will likely be sellers at the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline, and Reed is expected to be one of the free-agent-to-be veterans on the move for the Mets.
Reed, who has been filling in at closer for the suspended/injured Jeurys Familia for most of the season, has followed up last year’s outstanding campaign as the club’s primary setup man with an extremely solid first half, shouldering an impressive workload for a struggling Mets bullpen.
Reed has not been quite as dominant as he was in 2016, largely due to some struggles with home runs. Per Fangraphs, compared to 2016 Reed has seen a sharp increase in his HR/FB rate from 5.4% to 8.9%, which has been compounded by his fly ball rate spiking from 37.9% to 44.4%. Nevertheless, Reed is still among the game’s better relief pitchers and figures to net the Mets the best return in prospects—or other assets—of any of their available veteran pieces.
While there has been little chatter about specific contenders linked to Reed, who is a free agent at the end of the year, the Mets figure to be in a better position to receive a nice return for the righty following the Nationals’ pulling the trigger on a deal with the A’s for Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson on Sunday, taking two prized relief arms off the market in one swoop. From the Mets’ perspective, the first dominoes to fall in the reliever market couldn’t have shaken out much better: Two sought-after relievers are now off the market going to just one team—that diminishes the supply of relief aces still on the market. With only one buyer of premium relief pitching now presumably out of the market, demand looks like it will be quite strong for the now-diminished number of elite relievers up for sale. Throw in the fact that the buying team was the Mets’ division rival—with whom you have to imagine the Mets wouldn’t have been willing to trade anyway—and the Mets should still have plenty of willing buyers out there for Reed’s services.
It will be a long two weeks until the trade deadline, full of rumors and speculation, but if early chatter is any indication, by 4:01 PM on July 31, there’s a good chance Addison Reed will not be wearing a Mets uniform.