When it comes to Yoshinobu Yamamoto’s decision in free agency as he makes the move from Japan to the United States, it might come down to a battle between the Mets and Yankees. Mark Feinsand writes that one of his sources sees it playing out that way.
Even with Shohei Ohtani still available in free agency, Yamamoto has garnered a ton of attention. The 25-year-old had a 1.16 ERA with 176 strikeouts and just 28 walks in 171.0 innings of work this year in Japan. And while reigning Cy Young winner Blake Snell is also on the market, there seems to be a consensus around the game that Yamamoto is the best pitcher available in free agency right now.
Thus far, the Mets have made relatively fringe moves, and their addition of Luis Severino on a one-year deal constitutes their most significant move of the young offseason. And their rotation still needs help—even if the Severino move works out. Mets owner Steve Cohen and president of baseball operations David Stearns recently flew to Japan to meet with Yamamoto.