While listing the Top 25 pending free agents and guessing where they might sign, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports had the Mets connected to just two players -- 3B Todd Frazier, who he ranked 18th, and LHP CC Sabathia, who he ranked 19th.
Part of Heyman's predictions for where the top free agents might end up were sourced, where others appeared to be guesses (informed or otherwise).
Heyman did not have the Mets as potential landing spots for starting pitchers Jake Arrieta, Yu Darvish, Alex Cobb, or Lance Lynn, or relievers Wade Davis or Greg Holland.
As far as the top position players, the Mets weren't listed among likely landing spots for third baseman Mike Moustakas or outfielders J.D. Martinez or Justin Upton (who has an opt-out).
Former Mets Jay Bruce and Neil Walker are also pending free agents, and Heyman lists the Orioles and Phillies as potential landing spots for Bruce, and the Angels, Rays, Brewers, and Blue Jays as potential landing spots for Walker.
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The Mets arguably need to acquire a third baseman, second baseman, starting pitching help, and a back-end reliever this offseason.
That third base or second base acquisition may already be here, with the team holding an option on Asdrubal Cabrera. And signing Moustakas off a career-year would be a risky bet. Meanwhile, they have Wilmer Flores in-house, who can play second base. The crop of position player free agents also leaves a lot to be desired, so it would be understandable if the Mets didn't bite.
But with the state of their pitching staff, they should be involved in the bidding for the best starters and relievers available.
Jake Arietta has regressed significantly and seen his velocity drop in a big way since 2015, but there's no reason why the Mets shouldn't try to land the 31-year-old Yu Darvish, whose ERA has risen but whose velocity has been as strong as ever.
Signing free agent pitchers to long-term deals isn't Sandy Alderson's modus operandi, but it's fair to say the Mets have exactly one guarantee in the rotation heading in to next season. And that's Jacob deGrom. To go further, deGrom isn't just the only pitcher the Mets can reasonably expect to perform well. He's also the only one they can reasonably expect to be on the field. Hopefully Noah Syndergaard will be his usual dominant self, but he's missed almost the entire season due to a torn lat and has had hiccups while attempting to come back.
Seth Lugo seems to be proving that last year -- when his advanced stats suggested he was pitching over his head -- was a fluke. Robert Gsellman has dealt with injury and ineffectiveness, Matt Harvey has been so bad that the Mets have been asked about non-tenerding him (and said they won't be), Steven Matz went under the knife again after pitching through injury, and Zack Wheeler struggled as he pitched for the first time in roughly two years, before being shut down due to injury.
For a team hell-bent on contending next season, as Alderson has stated on numerous ocassions, the state of the starting rotation is frightening. Regarding the bullpen, the Mets should be interested in signing either Wade Davis or Greg Holland, especially when you consider how Jeurys Familia has pitched this season since returning.
The bullpen issue is a secondary one, though. The main thing the Mets need is major rotation help. And they need a pitcher -- perhaps even more than one -- who can be counted on to both absorb innings and be above average while doing so. If they don't want to go after Darvish, the 30-year-old Lynn is a solid option, though his career-low 7.23 K/9 this season is a bit alarming.
Whatever they do, the Mets need help in the starting rotation next season. And the easiest way to find that help will be via free agency. CC Sabathia, the only free agent pitcher Heyman has the Mets linked to, won't cut it.