The Morning Report – November 15 – Excess Pitching, Additional FAs, Alexei for Niese, Brandon Nimmo


You’ve probably finished reading a bunch of stuff in the past twenty-four hours that teams with excess shortstops aren’t interested in trading their excess for pitchers. Don’t believe it. This is early Hot Stove speak that is particularly directed to Sandy Alderson and the Mets. It’s no big secret that the only thing the Mets have to trade are excess starters, preferably the older ones (Bartolo Colon, Dillon Gee, Jonathan Niese). The other team want to do whatever they can to get Jacob deGrom, Zack Wheeler, or Noah Syndergaard on the trade list. Give this process time.

Andy Martino posted his latest article[i]. It included:

The Mets are not acting aggressively to pursue any additional major league free agents, and Alderson said he would “probably not” engage with any relievers seeking multi-year deals -- no surprise there, but if you had Andrew Miller or David Robertson on your wish list, cross them off. Trading players currently on the roster will also take time. The primary candidates to be moved are Jon Niese, Daniel Murphy, Dillon Gee, Bartolo Colon and perhaps Jenrry Mejia. Niese’s value is down from where it was two years ago, because rivals are concerned about his recent history of arm injuries.

I don’t know how much of this is just Martino’s spin, but they seem to be the same as mine. One of the above listed guys (I don’t see Mejia on this list) will go for a left hand throwing reliever. Wait for it.

Eno-Chat –
Comment From JoelShoe - Sounds like the Mets and White Sox are talking. Would Alexei Ramirez for Jonathan Niese work?

Eno Sarris: I’d do that in a second. He’s got a club option for 2016 and at $10m a season, he’s cheap. The White Sox need pitching… I’m just not really a fan of Niese. Average fastball at best, okay cutter, average curveball. Seems like an average lefty at best, and projections have him worse than that. Has somewhere between 5-10 million surplus on him, if you look at this way (and Ramirez would have 10+.

Mack – I would be very surprised if the White Sox did this but I would be thrilled if they did. The Mets have to find a home for one of the older rotation pitchers (Niese, Dillon Gee, Bartolo Colon) and this would be the perfect solution until the time Noah Syndergaard is ready to come up.

At least (projected) $2mil could be saved by DFAing Ruben Tejada and making Wilmer Flores UT infielder #1.

This would work big time in my book.

Hey Brennan… here’s a Matt Reynolds story[ii]

I found this on a pre-ROY article about Jacob deGrom[iii] -

                       It wouldn’t be shocking to see deGrom struggle in 2015. Sophomore slumps are existent, especially in pitchers that are now analyzed and studied through a full offseason for the first time. Of the five pitchers to win their league’s Rookie of the Year award since 2009 — Andrew Bailey, Neftali Feliz, Jeremy Hellickson, Craig Kimbrel and Jose Fernandez — all but Kimbrel and Fernandez saw a significant decrease in their WHIP and K/9 value in year two. Of course, Kimbrel and Fernandez are both regarded as top-tier pitchers now — but they needed that sophomore success to prove it, right?  

DeGrom is also 26, and while he doesn’t have as much stress on his elbow or shoulder that a former high school pitcher would now have, he’s going to have to develop his repertoire further or hope he can still reach mid-90s speed as he nears 30 years old. His best hope to maintain that velocity might be to put on weight. He still has the physicality of a rangy shortstop, standing 6’4” and not even weighing in close to 200 lbs. He strides fluidly and with length off the mound, but could ease burden from his elbow with more weight behind his pitches. Put it this way: Clayton Kershaw is an inch shorter but has 45 pounds on him.

I was surprised to read about this in the NY Post about Brandon Nimmo[iv]

                        Brandon Nimmo has inched closer to the major league radar. The club’s first-round draft pick in 2011 is expected to play at Triple-A Las Vegas this season, and could soon give the Mets another lefty-swinging option in the outfield.

Nimmo hit 10 homers and had an .820 OPS split between Single-A St. Lucie and Double-A Binghamton last season.

“The nice thing is we don’t have to push him, with what we have as a starting outfield going into next season and what we have with guys like [Kirk] Nieuwenhuis and [Matt] den Dekker, we don’t have to push him,” Alderson said. “To me he’s right on track. If what happens [next] year is similar to what happened in Binghamton this year, and more of the power is evident, he’s right on track.”

            I guess I have been too conservative about Nimmo.


Thomas Brennan said...

Morning, Mack
I can't imagine a Niese and Leathersich deal for Ramirez would not work, if Niese alone is not enough. In my opinion.
I keep seeing management push Nimmo. But they won't push him onto the Mets until ready. Nothing I've seen, tracking him game by game, suggests more than a late inning call up at best.

Thomas Brennan said...

I meant late season callup for Nimmo, as a pinch hitter/runner if they are in pennant race.

Thomas Brennan said...

Read the Matt Reynolds article. Coming fast. If they get a Ramirez, he is a chip, or delayed, but he made enormous strides in 2014, certainly capable of further growth in 2015. Tejada or Matt today to start at SS? I pick Matt.

Thomas Brennan said...

Lastly, and I apologize for multiple post, deGrom's stuff is superior, multiple effective weapons, and I do not see league catching up to him.

Brian Joura said...

Niese has averaged 28 starts per year over the last five seasons and had 30 starts in 2014. He's had more starts in that span than Jordan Zimmermann, Adam Wainwright, Matt Garza and Johnny Cueto.

In his last nine starts of the year, he had 7 Quality Starts, a 3.18 ERA with a 4.36 K/9 and only an elevated BABIP kept his numbers from being even better.

And he's one of the few players with the stones to say FU to the manager. What's not to like?

Mack Ade said...

Brian -

CRusso REALLY tore into Niese yesterday on MLB-TV... said he has 'done nothing'...

Ernest Dove said...

No reason to trade Niese in 2015. For the same reasons people brought up after my cuddyer effect post yesterday. Its time the Mets finally play for the here and now. I love Matz, Noah and Montero, but they can't all enter the rotation and back end bullpen immediately and help this team win 90 games and go to the playoffs In 2015..........unless they all FORCE the teams hand, ala Lagares and degrom.
As for Nimmo, the team can kinda treat him like Dodgers did Joc Pederson. Maybe he DOMINATES in Vegas, but if u winning and no injuries, leave his ass there and have em show up on bench in September to watch playoff chase big league ball for experience.

Mack Ade said...

I mean - Russo

Herb G said...


I agree that Niese + a prospect (preferably not named Jack) would get a deal for Ramirez done. Actually, I don't even see why Niese alone isn't good enough. Jon is a good mid rotation pitcher and Alexei is not an elite SS by any means.

I wouldn't count Puello out of the outfield mix. He had been more highly regarded than Lagares in the past. and he might just re-emerge as a possible mate with either dD or Capt. Kirk as our 4th and 5th outfielders in 2015.

Regarding Matt Reynolds, he had the one stellar year in 2014 after a few so-so years. He needs to repeat in 2015 before I would annoint him as a possible 2016 starter.

Anonymous said...

Forget any of the retread SS's.........if we cannot land a young, "blue chip" SS (Owings, for example) that is a major upgrade (with the bat and glove), they we should stand pat.

Flores is coming into his own with the bat and his defense isn't as bad as advertised. We will be fine with Wilmer at SS........some of the other garbage being thrown around as a replacement at SS will be a sideways step at best and it will cost valuable assets that should be used for other needs.

Don't forget, we also have some talent in the lower levels of the minor leagues that may be ready in a two or three years (or right about the time Wilmer has further established himself and would be a valuable trade chip).......Rosario comes to mind.

Wouldn't want to block him with a player that is not much of an upgrade.

Chris Owings would be my target.......try to get him for a Gee or Niese (and other lower level parts), or move on with Wilmer, IMO.

bob gregory said...

I just don't get it.

Niese's value is speculated as being so low because of his recent injury history.
Cuddyer was such a great signing even with his recent injury history?

Trade values for hitters is so high when it comes to anyone the Mets may target
Murphy has little value in a trade?

Makes no sense

Ernest Dove said...

Definitely interesting that guys like Murphy and Wilmer seemingly have no value, after healthy seasons, but the organization is willing to shell out over $80mil to corner outfielders coming off 50 or so game seasons instead of 150.

Thomas Brennan said...

Young players are better. I would not weep if Flores was our everyday SS. If Alexei is a real upgrade, I'd consider it as a bridge to Amed. If not, breaking out my finest Latin, "status quo" is the way to go.

Stephen Guilbert said...

Joura are you cherry picking meaningless stats for effect? If so then I agree. The guy is not an upgrade in this rotation to pretty much any other internal option. Problem is everyone else is a righty. He stays until we either trust Matz, sign Lester or Liriano, or replace the lefty presence in the rotation. You can't survive with five RHSPs. Especially in the NL East

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