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Mets in the market for middle of rotation starter

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The team hopes to add to their pitching depth before the season starts

MLB: Chicago Cubs at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Due in part to the incredibly slow offseason, Mets General Manager Sandy Alderson is believed to now be targeting a starting pitcher. While the team is not likely to go in on one of the top tier free agents, Jim Duquette of SNY believes that they may go for an innings eater to help stabilize the talented, though injury plagued, starting rotation. Duquette specifically mentioned Lance Lynn, Alex Cobb, and Jason Vargas as potential targets. These players, thought too expensive for the Mets’ needs earlier this off-season, may suddenly be available due to the glut of free agents still available as of early February.

Cobb reportedly rejected a three year, $42 million deal on the table earlier this off-season from the Cubs. Last season for the Rays, Cobb threw 179 innings, averaging 8.1 strikeouts per nine innings, and putting up a 3.66 ERA.

Vargas was a Met in 2007, making a couple of starts for the big league club, before being traded that off-season as part of the J.J. Putz deal. After a few lean years, the left-handed Vargas had a bounce back season in 2017 for the Royals, making 32 starts and being named an All-Star.

Lynn is the most durable of the three, starting at least 29 games in every season since 2012, aside from 2016, when he was recovering from Tommy John surgery. Both early in his career and in the post-season, Lynn has also worked out of the bullpen, which may add some versatility to his profile, something Alderson often cites as something he looks for in a player.

Any of these options would be a pleasant addition to a team that was decimated by injuries to their starting rotation the past two years.