The New York Mets are coming off a season of disappointment where they were sellers at the trade deadline and were not even in the picture for making the playoffs which was the opposite of the team’s goals. This offseason will be huge for them in building a team that will be competitive for many years to come.
That all starts with attacking the free agent market. So who are the potential players that the Mets should target this offseason?
Yoshinobu Yamamoto, SP
The Mets are in need of starting pitching. Especially, a starting pitcher to pair with Kodai Senga who was a candidate for Rookie of the Year this past season. One of the best options on the market is Japanese free agent Yoshinobu Yamamoto. There has been a lot of talk around Yamamoto and with good reason. He has been playing for the Nippon Professional Baseball league since 2017 and since his debut, he has compiled a 1.82 earned run average and 9.3 strikeouts per nine innings across close to 900 innings in 172 games. With the Orix Buffaloes, the 25-year old won each of the MVP awards, Triple Crown and Sawamura Award (equivalent to the Cy Young award) in both 2021 and 2022. He looked to win the award for the third-straight year after finishing the year with a 1.21 ERA with 16 wins and 169 strikeouts. The Mets need to form a starting rotation filled with younger pitchers who have established their talent instead of signing veteran pitchers to shorter, record-breaking salary contracts. Yamamoto would be a great fit for the Mets and he should be one of New York’s top targets for this offseason.
Jordan Montgomery, SP
Another starting pitcher the Mets should look at is starting pitcher Jordan Montgomery. Once on the Yankees roster, he is now a World Series Champion with the Texas Rangers. Montgomery has risen to be one of the top pitching free agents for this season and the Mets should pursue him. Last season with the St. Louis Cardinals he pitched a 3.11 ERA over 11 starts and in 2023 he replicated that with a 3.42 ERA across 21 starts. He was traded for the second year in a row at the deadline and became one of the most dependable pitchers for the Rangers with a 2.79 ERA in 11 regular season games. He also played a part in the Rangers’ World Series run as he added a strong dipitching performance in Game 1 of the Wild Card Series. Montgomery is one of the most consistent starters in the game and he would benefit any team’s middle rotation. This qualifies him to be a great potential fit for the Mets as they are in great need of starting pitchers.
Adam Duvall, OF
One of the components the Mets are set with is a young outfield that is ready to thrive. However, their outfield does have some gaps. That is where Adam Duvall would be a solid fit. Although he is on the more veteran side at 35-years old, he had one of the best seasons of his career with the Boston Red Sox before the 2023 season. In 2022 he slashed .247/.303/.531 with 116 weighted runs created plus and 21 home runs despite just playing in 91 games with 353 plate appearances after having dealt with a left wrist injury for the second season in a row. He has seen some struggles on defense when playing center field, he wouldnt have that issue with the Mets as Brandon Nimmo is their primary center fielder. However, over 200 innings, he was worth one out above average in both left and right field. He is an effective base runner and has supplied power at the plate with 184 career home runs. The Mets are in need of lengthening their lineup and Duvall would be a great player to add to the bottom half of their offense.
David Robertson, RP
Roberston was one of the first guys to be traded after the Mets’ 2023 season was not all it was sought out to be. However after losing Edwin Díaz to a season-ending knee injury in March, Roberston became the Mets’ primary closer. Roberston would fit with the Mets’ need of late-inning pitching options and his existing familiarity with the Mets provides an even better reason why he should sign with New York. He would help build their bullpen back up and with Díaz’s hopeful return, this duo would provide New York with a backbone of relievers that they lacked last season. It would replicate Robertson’s role that he was brought into last season before Díaz got hurt. Robertson pitched to a 2.05 ERA with 14 saves in 40 appearances with the Mets and despite losing some momentum after his trade to the Miami Marlins, he should still be well equipped to have another solid season this upcoming year. A reunion with the Mets and Robertson would help bolster their bullpen and it should be something that New York seriously considers this offseason.
There are many options for free agents this season, even Shohei Ohtani is on the market but that’s something that seems more out of the Mets’ reach. New York could also look at trades, even though they want to maintain a strong farm system, it is still something that’s on the table. The New York Mets are all in behind owner Steve Cohen’s big ambitions for the team to be successful and win soon. There is a lot in store for New York and the next step is free agency so we will have to wait to see who the Mets lock in for the upcoming season.