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Mets have checked in on free agent starters

The team continues to lay the groundwork for a potential Noah Syndergaard trade.

MLB: ALDS-New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets have checked in on big free agent pitchers, including J.A. Happ, according to Jon Heyman. This is the latest sign that the team is serious about considering offers for Noah Syndergaard this offseason, as new GM Brodie Van Wagenen looks to patch multiple holes with unknown budget restrictions.

Happ has posted four straight seasons of roughly three fWAR, running an ERA in the mid 3’s and a FIP to match in the hitter-friendly environment of the AL East. Calling the 36-year-old lefty a ‘big’ free agent is something of stretch, but he’s a quality starting pitcher. That said, he represents a significant downgrade from the potential upside of Noah Syndergaard who, despite having what often felt like a down year in 2018, posted a 3.03 ERA, a 2.80 FIP, and struck out more than a batter per inning last season.

Happ is projected by Fangraphs to get roughly two years and $30 million in free agency this offseason, while at least six teams are rumored to be interested in Syndergaard, with the Padres being mentioned most often.