Reese Kaplan -- NL East Trade Targets (Part 3 of 6)


Washington Nationals

There is a reason they’re in first place.  As a team they’re hitting over .280.  There’s not a real weak link anywhere except last year’s rookie sensation Trea Turner who is only at .248 thus far.  However, coupled with this offense is a standout starting rotation from 1-4 with auditions apparently still being held for the 5th starter.  The bullpen was expected to be a weakness going into the season.  34 year old Matt Albers is having the best stint of his career and young Koda Glover is looking pretty solid.  After that it’s a crap shoot as they indulge in a closer by committee approach.  I can’t see the Mets and Nationals making major league player type deals that would help one another nor do I see a good match between them.  

Philadelphia Phillies

This team bears watching because they are getting below normal production from some regulars, including Maikel Franco, Osdubel Herrera, Freddy Galvis and Michael Saunders.  Yet despite their minimal contributions the Phillies find themselves in third place ahead of both the Marlins and the Braves (and just 1.5 behind the Mets).   Zack Eflin has contributed 5 excellent starts and Jeremy Hellickson is doing his usual credible job.  After that it’s been pretty dismal.  Veteran sinkerballer Pat Neshek is having an excellent season but the rest of the bullpen is not too impressive.  Given his age of 36 he might be available in some kind of deal.  

Atlanta Braves

They need a shortstop badly.  The incumbent is hitting .174.  All of the starting pitchers are over 4.00 ERA with Bartolo Colon over 7.00.  Jim Johnson doing a credible job as a closer.  2-3 others in setup roles doing alright but the last few relievers are awful.  You should inquire about relievers Jose Ramirez and Arodys Vizcaino.  If they are willing to cough up some payroll dollars, no one would be disappointed to see either R.A. Dickey or Bartolo Colon return to the Mets.  As a young club they probably are more interested in what the Mets have on the farm rather than their payroll dumps like Curtis Granderson, Neil Walker or Lucas Duda.  Despite his poor performance thus far you might be able to parlay Jose Reyes into something, too.  

Miami Marlins

They have one of the better young rosters in baseball, but all the hitting they can produce will be for naught until they address their pitching woes.  Right now Jose Ureña is the only man pitching to a sub 5.00 ERA and that’s through a total of just two starts.  Dan Straily, Wei-Yin Chen and Edinson Volquez have been mediocre at best.  Tom Koehler has been awful.   Other than closer A.J. Ramos, the bullpen has struggled.  I’d target Kyle Barraclough as someone who has turned in three credible seasons in the reliever role.  However, the one player on the Marlins for whom I would give up quite a bit is catcher J.T. Realmuto.  Unlike Travis d’Arnaud, he’s actually improved each year he’s been playing.  Last year he finished with a .303 average and is duplicating that thus far this year.  He may not have d’Arnaud’s power but what he does do is get on base.  More importantly, he stays on the field.  A trade package including d’Arnaud plus other parts (lower level quality pitching prospects such as P.J. Conlon plus some wildcards like Tyler Pill or Tommy Milone) might get it done.  That would solve the Mets catching woes for several years and add a high batting average to a mostly low batting average lineup.  


Mack Ade said...

If Atlanta was truly looking to the future and building a team with young blood,they would looking for a shortstop to breakthrough to the major league level in either 2018 (Gavin Cecchini) or 2019 (Luis Guillorme).

P Sean Newcomb or Max Fried would be a good exchange item

Thomas Brennan said...

It is getting closer to Bart's return to the Mets, by the day.

Thomas Brennan said...

The poor outing of Matz and really poor outings of Lugo and McGowan make this a situation where help for the Mets' staff is not right around the corner, except for Pill.

Dr. Sandy may decide to prescribe a Pill every 5 days.

Mack Ade said...

he torch gets passed back to Gsellman

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