Standing Pat May Have Been Best Move for Mets
Neither buyers nor sellers.
Neither contenders nor also-rans, quite yet.
The baseball purgatory in which the New York Mets find themselves in as the trade deadline passes contributed, in part, to their transaction inaction at the deadline.
There were a couple of rumors floated as the deadline approached. One of them, the marketing of second baseman Daniel Murphy, never made a lot of sense, and one wonders how much credibility the idea really had. After all, what the Mets need most is a jolt to their offense. How is trading the National League’s leader in base hits going to help the offense?
For now, Murphy stays, along with his ever-reliable line-drive bat, his perpetually unreliable iron glove and his, er, sometimes creative baserunning instincts.
Another rumor had the Mets marketing starting pitcher Bartolo Colon in a trade. Colon is the leading winner on the staff with 10 victories, is 41 years old and is signed through next season. With those credentials, Colon was not going to bring the Mets either a big bat or a prime young prospect in return, and the Mets figure to need Colon’s reliable knack for taking the ball every fifth day and pounding away at the strike zone as the dog days of the season approach, possibly claiming some of the team’s younger, more protected pitching arms along the way.
It’s important to remember that, last year, July 31 came and went without the Mets–who at this point in 2013 were in much more a position of definitive “sell” mode–completing a trade. But a waiver deal less than a month later sent two of their top home run hitters, Marlon Byrd and John Buck, to Pittsburgh in a significant deal that brought relief pitcher Vic Black–an important member of this year’s bullpen–and minor league second baseman Dilson Herrera–who may eventually replace Murphy at second–to the organization.
The Mets may still make a deal. But there’s also at least an outside chance, if they continue their notably improved play at home, that they may even tease some true believers into thinking they’re on the fringe of the wild card race for awhile longer.
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