There is a better chance the Brewers trade OF Ryan Braun for Mets 1B Ike Davis than deal OF Norichika Aoki for Davis, according to people familiar with the team's thinking.
Milwaukee is trying to make room for OF prospect Khris Davis, and they're also looking for a left-handed power bat at first base (Sherman).
"They’ve indicated that they have extra first basemen, and we have a need,” Brewers GM Doug Melvin said during the GM Meetings (MLB.com).
The Mets could be able to pull the trigger on a one-for-one deal that can move Davis for a medium-talent outfielder, according to people aware of his market. The Rockies, Rays and Brewers seem to match up best. However, I assume Sandy Alderson will first try to package Davis with other players to get a more reputable bat to hit behind David Wright. If all else fails, he could turn to the Rays (maybe Matt Joyce), Rockies or some other team.
Braun is guaranteed $113 million over the next seven seasons, and buzz from Milwaukee suggests they'll pay a good chunk of it to force a change of scenery. Braun was suspended without pay for the final 65 games last season after admitting to violating MLB's performance-enhancing drug policy. Braun tried to discredit the man who collected his urine sample in 2011 by telling peers he was a Cubs fan and anti-Semitic (Passan). He spent part of his September off calling season-ticket holders to apologize for the incident.
The thought of delivering Braun to New York's conflict-driven media is a bit frightening, but I'll consider anyone with power potential at a discount. I mean, his worst season was still better than anyone in Alderson's current outfield.
In either case, team insiders say it's very possible Davis will get traded and it's clear the Brewers have interest - as do other teams. Again, Alderson has options. He's looking to be creative, mix things up and add more than one new bat to his lineup. And, he may soon find he'll get more bang for his buck when taking discounted, damaged players on the trade market than paying premium prices for overvalued talent on the free-agent market.