The Mets are still in touch with free agent starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel, SNY's Andy Martino reported Wednesday, noting that the situation "is worth watching." But Keuchel isn't the only high-end free agent the Mets are still considering.
"By the way, they're keeping in touch with Craig Kimbrel too," Martino said Thursday night on Baseball Night in New York on SNY.
But while the Mets are still in touch with Kimbrel, Martino explained why he feels the team signing Keuchel is more likely.
"The reason I have a hard time seeing that (signing Kimbrel) happening is because if you're gonna convince a guy like that to come in and not be the closer. ... You have to pay him closer money anyway. They're signing these guys if the price gets down to like desperate to get a job stuff. And I see that being more likely with Keuchel than with Kimbrel."
Kimbrel began the offseason seeking a six-year deal worth more than $100 million, which was an absurdly high ask and one that was not in the realm of reality. Since then, there haven't been many reports of what his expected contract will wind up being.
It can be argued that the Mets' bigger need is Keuchel, with Jason Vargas currently holding down the fifth spot in the rotation and the potential replacement options in Triple-A not being ideal.
It can also be argued that the Mets adding Kimbrel would have a very big ripple effect since it would theoretically turn every game where the Mets' starting pitcher doesn't last long into kind of a six-inning game, with Jeurys Familia pitching the seventh inning, Kimbrel the eighth, and Edwin Diaz the ninth.
In any event, both Keuchel and Kimbrel remain out there a week into the regular season, and the Mets are doing the right thing by keeping in touch. If they take it one step further and sign one of them, it could dramatically improve the team and their hopes of reaching the postseason.