Jon Heyman has an interesting article that includes some specifics about the New York Mets and the possibility of dealing their ace, Jacob deGrom. (There’s also a good summary of where the Brewers are right now, as well as synopses of other contending and non-contending teams.)
The New York righty has worked 195 innings this season, with an ERA of 1.71 and a WHIP of 0.954. Is this an outlier season? Um, no. His career ERA is 2.65 and WHIP of 1.085. He has accumulated an 8.8 WAR this season despite only getting credit for 8 wins so far. (Does this mean that a replacement level MLB pitcher would have been lucky to have won one game if he started all of Jacob’s games so far this season?) For his career, he is up to a 25.9 WAR.
The cost for any of the teams that reportedly talked with the Mets about acquiring deGrom was, understandably, very steep, and nobody was willing to meet that price. According to Heyman:
...The Mets sought multiple top prospects and young players in the talks (i.e., a two-for-one) since deGrom is the proven star (and likely Cy Young winner), but the teams targeted didn’t want to part with the game’s biggest prospects …
And not just top prospects, the TOP top prospects. Heyman lists Vladimir Guerrero, Fernando Tatis Jr., and Gleyber Torres as names the Mets were (perhaps) targeting.
The Brewers are listed as the fifth team, and one involved to a lesser degree, of the five rumored to be involved in talks. Heyman also says that the Mets were looking for young players that were already in the bigs in addition to those top prospects, and at a minimum of two top players for deGrom. The Brewers are without a prospect as highly rated as the three mentioned above, and it isn’t beyond the pale to think that the deal would have had to include multiple prospects from the tier that includes Keston Hiura, Corey Ray, Freddy Peralta, and Corbin Burnes. The Mets would not have been out of line for asking about a prominent young MLB player like Josh Hader, either.
All of this conjecture (or reporting, in Heyman’s case) seems to lead to the conclusion that the Mets weren’t really interested in dealing deGrom. Which would seem to be a very reasonable position to take, and one that I’d totally agree with. I would not trade an ace - arguably the best pitcher in the game - with two more years of team control unless I got a package with multiple premium prospects and/or controllable MLB players in it, something like the above list. And it says that other teams weren’t going to go that all-in on a deGrom trade.
Mets fans don’t trust the Wilbon ownership group already. They don’t believe that the team is committed to winning, and a deal like this would have removed any further doubts from fans about the direction of the organization.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference