The New York Mets have several positions to address during the offseason if they want to have a shot at taking first place in the NL East division in 2022. While the next step would be appointing a manager, they are still monitoring the market to look for roster upgrades.
Their most pressing needs are center field, a third baseman, and pitching, both for the rotation and the bullpen. Free agency is an obvious avenue to bring players, but the trade market is also an option.
These three players, potentially available via trade, would fit in the Mets with ease.
Byron Buxton, CF, Minnesota Twins
Buxton would represent a huge upgrade in center field for the Mets. It would also be a direct replacement for free agent Michael Conforto, because the team would slide Brandon Nimmo to a corner and plug Buxton in the middle.
Buxton put an amazing .306/.358/.647 line with 4.2 Wins Above Replacement, or WAR, which is amazing considering he only participated in 61 games. He is injury-prone, sure, but remains one of the gameâ€™s best all-around players and would fit in the Mets like a glove.
Matt Chapman, 3B, Oakland Aâ€™s
The Mets have been looking for a reliable third baseman for a while. They have had to play JD Davis there, and while he can hit, he struggles to stay healthy and is a liability on the field. Chapman, on the other hand, is a magician with the glove.
Additionally, he carries severe power in his right-handed bat. He hit 27 homers this season and his career-high is 36. However, he carries some batting-average risk by virtue of his high strikeout rate. Still, he is a 6-win player when at his best and could be a major upgrade for the Mets.
Luis Castillo, SP, Cincinnati Reds
The Cincinnati Reds have made it clear that they are not looking to shop Castillo. Still, it could be a move to maintain some leverage, and the Mets donâ€™t lose anything if they knock on the door.
Castillo had a rough first two months of the season, but finished with a 3.98 ERA as a whole and a 2.73 mark from June to the end of the campaign.
The Mets need rotation help after losing Noah Syndergaard to the Los Angeles Angels and with Marcus Stroman still testing the free agent market.