The New York Mets were one of the most disappointing teams during the 2021 season. Expectations were high and they actually led their division, the NL East, for months. However, a second-half collapse pushed them down to third place with a 77-85 record.
The Oakland A’s, on the other hand, were actually serious contenders until late September. They ultimately fell off the race but didn’t have a bad season. However, the two franchises appear to be in opposite directions.
The Mets are looking for a president of baseball operations and a general manager to take over and start improving the team. They have a wealthy owner and a president with a track record of success in Steve Cohen and Sandy Alderson, respectively. They want to win, and will do whatever it takes.
Oakland, meanwhile, couldn’t get their longtime manager, Bob Melvin, to stay in charge, as he left for the San Diego Padres. They are expected to reduce payroll, even if it won’t result in a full-fledged fire sale.
But they are reportedly considering selling some assets. And that’s where the Mets can pounce and take advantage, as Michael Mayer of MetsMerized Online speculates.
The Mets should pounce
Andrew Baggarly of The Athletic noted that the A’s have several players due for raises in arbitration, like first baseman Matt Olson, third baseman Matt Chapman, left-handed pitcher Sean Manaea, right-handed hurlers Chris Bassitt and Frankie Montas, and center fielder Ramón Laureano.
Some of them would fit in nicely on the Mets, especially the pitchers, Laureano, and Chapman. Pitching is always needed, and Bassitt and Montas have proven to be very, very good, and Manaea could be a nice middle-of-the-rotation arm.
Chapman is solid offensively and a star at third, which has been a position of need for a long time on the Mets. Laureano, an elite defensive center fielder, could push Brandon Nimmo to a corner outfield position, where he fits best.
It will all depend on who ends up making baseball decisions with the Mets, but the team can match with Oakland and talk trades.