Who is Trevor May? Analyzing the pitcher who reportedly agreed to join the New York Mets

New York Mets
Dec 7, 2015; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Mets sign and logo during the MLB winter meetings at Gaylord Opryland Resort. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

According to several outlets, the New York Mets will sign right-handed reliever Trevor May. The money involved in the deal aren’t yet known, but they would be getting one of the best bullpen arms of the free agent pool. Tim Britton of The Athletic reported that it is a two-year contract.

But who exactly is Trevor May? He ‘may’ not be a household name, but the numbers and the stuff are both very, very encouraging.

Mets’ fans should know that, as it happens with lots of relievers these days, May began his career as a starter. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in 2008, in round four, out of Kelso HS.

May spent four years in the Phillies’ system, but the Minnesota Twins traded center fielder Ben Revere to Philadelphia for Trevor May and fellow righty Vance Worley. He made his major league debut in 2014, pitching 10 games and starting nine.

The new Mets’ hurler underwent Tommy John surgery in March 2017. By that point, he was already a reliever. When he came back in 2018, he started a string of three excellent seasons out of the Twins’ bullpen, with a 3.20 ERA and a 3.08 FIP in 25.1 innings. He had a 12.79 K/9 and a 1.78 BB/9.

The Mets are getting a quality reliever

May produced a sub-3.00 ERA season in 2019, with 2.94 in 64.1 frames. This year, he had a 14.66 K/9, a 3.86 ERA, a 3.62 FIP, 2.74 xFIP. All in all, the new Mets’ signee has a 3.19 ERA since returning from Tommy John.

As you can see, May’s starter pedigree gives him a high floor when it comes to command. And, another positive of having been raised as a starter is his pitch mix. He has three offerings when the majority of relievers only have two.

May throws a high-velocity four-seamer 47.7 percent of the time, per Baseball Savant. It has been rising in velocity for three straight seasons, starting at 94.0 mph in 2018 to 95.5 last year to 96.3 in 2020.

The Mets also love his secondaries: a changeup, and this slider:

All things considered, Trevor May looks like a savvy investment for the New York Mets. He has a bit of a home run problem (1.93 HR/9 in 2020) but he makes it up with his top-notch stuff.