It didn't take long for new Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen to be asked about the future of his now-former client Jacob deGrom.
"I believe Jacob deGrom is an incredible talent and I hope to keep him for a long time," Van Wagenen said during his introductory press conference at Citi Field on Tuesday.
Van Wagenen insinuated this past summer during All-Star week that the Mets should either trade deGrom or sign him long-term.
"The inertia of the current situation could complicate Jacob's relationship with the club and creates an atmosphere of indecision," Van Wagenen said at the time.
DeGrom, who is expected to win his first Cy Young award on Nov. 14, is under team control through the 2020 season and currently arbitration-eligible in 2019 and 2020.
Regarding the potential conflict of interest when it comes to Van Wagenen being directly involved with contract negotiations for former clients, Mets COO Jeff Wilpon said the team has "provisions" in Van Wagenen's contract to "deal with any conflict of interest."
"I would love to play here for my whole career," deGrom said in July. "I think it's just kind of deciding what we see as the future. It's something that's in the Mets' control, and kind of out of mine."
The Mets considered trading deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, and Zack Wheeler during the season, but talks never progressed. Prior to hiring Van Wagenen, the club suggested the plan was to compete in 2019. And if that remains the plan, deGrom remaining will almost certainly be part of it.