It behooves the Mets to build for the future, and each day that passes diminishes Noah Syndergaard’s value.
The New York Mets season has become a disaster after spending the entire winter compiling pieces to field a competitive team with playoff aspirations. Robinson Cano has an OBP below .300 and an OPS barely above .700. Edwin Diaz has gone from 57 saves and a 1.96 ERA last season to an ERA approaching five this season.
General Manager Brodie Van Wagenen has admitted that the season has not gone the way the club has hoped and realizes they need to sell off some assets to continue to bolster a farm system that only has two prospects in the top-80.
Zack Wheeler, Todd Frazier and Jason Vargas are the most likely candidates to be dealt before the July 31st deadline, but the team is still hesitant to deal Noah Syndergaard. Considering Syndergaard has the most upside of any player they would trade it would make sense that the team get as much as they can for him.
Syndergaard is still under club control for another two years and is still only 26 years old. On the surface, Syndergaard hasn’t had the best season with a 4.33 ERA, but he’s in the 88th percentile in hard-hit percentage and 89th percentile in exit velocity. Balls aren’t being hit hard against him, but the Mets defense behind him has been bad to say the least.
Four everyday starters have a negative UZR, which measure what the actual outcome of a play was (hit/out/error) against similarly hit balls and determines how much better or worse the fielder did. The Mets have probably been the worst defensive team in the majors all season long, and that’s not likely to change anytime soon.
With every start Syndergaard’s value is plummeting no thanks to his teams defense. The Mets are in a lose, lose situation. If they were to hold on to Thor they’re not likely to contend anytime soon, and would be wasting his prime. If they trade him now they’re not likely to get the value that they would have had they traded him last winter.
That being said Thor would net the Mets a greater return than Wheeler, Vargas or Frazier could. The teams asking price is fairly high at the moment, but all that does is begin the annual game of chicken that teams play as they approach the deadline.
A change of scenery could be beneficial with a coaching staff better suited to get the most out of his talents as his spin rate on his power fastball and breaking ball are both bottom-25 percentile. The Mets can be frugal and hold on to Syndergaard, and reap no benefits, or they can trade him, get a good return and continue their rebuild. We will see what they decide on July 31st.