The baseball world is in awe after the San Diego Padres made three high-profile moves to greatly improve their roster in a span of 36 hours. First, they traded for Tampa Bay Rays’ ace Blake Snell, then they agreed to terms with Korean shortstop Ha-Seong Kim, and finally, they negotiated a deal with the Chicago Cubs to bring starter Yu Darvish, a National League Cy Young finalist, into the fold. Prior to those moves, the New York Mets were the most active team in free agency.
New York Mets’ owner Steve Cohen was among those surprised by San Diego’s sudden proactivity, and he went to his official Twitter account to congratulate the Padres on the additions.
“Hey, Give the Padres credit. They had a top 5 farm system that gave them the flexibility to trade for Snell. Newsflash, the Mets farm system needs to be replenished,” Cohen said.
Given that Cohen just took over the Mets this offseason, he has no responsibility whatsoever in the current state of the farm system.
Former Mets’ GM decimated the system
Former Mets’ general manager Brodie Van Wagenen, who occupied the role from 2018 until the arrival of Cohen this year, sacrificed some of the Mets’ top prospects to acquire win-now talent in the last couple of years.
He traded pitchers Anthony Kay, Kevin Smith, Simeon Woods-Richardson, and Justin Dunn, plus top prospect Jarred Kelenic and other assets, in exchange for Robinson Cano, Edwin Diaz, and Marcus Stroman.
Those transactions, plus the graduations of Andres Gimenez, Dominic Smith, David Peterson, and others, have left the farm system severely short on talent, especially in the upper minors.
But Cohen wants to rescue the Mets’ farm systematically and progressively.
Right now, the team’s farm system was ranked No. 20 by MLB.com with shortstop Ronny Mauricio (No. 57 on Top 100) catcher Francisco Alvarez (No. 58), and third baseman Brett Baty (No. 88) as the only prospects in the Top 100.