Over the final week or so, with Kelenic set to face the Mets for the primary time for the reason that commerce, a bunch of various iterations of “The Mets’ trade of Kelenic doesn’t look so bad now” and “Have the Mets won the Kelenic trade?” have been popping up.
The drawback? The Mets’ commerce of Kelenic can by no means be good. Before we dive into why, let’s make a journey again in time to November of 2018…
At first, the concept that the Mets have been even discussing the opportunity of together with Kelenic within the commerce that introduced Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz to New York appeared like a joke.
The thought on the time went like this: The Mets should not even ponder together with some of the extremely considered prospects in baseball in a deal that quantities to a wage dump for the Mariners — a deal that might have the Mets doing Seattle an unlimited favor by ridding them of the ultimate 5 years of Cano’s deal whereas taking over a lot of the monetary burden.
For the Mets, their reward for taking over most of Cano’s contract whereas additionally dealing Jay Bruce — with Cano getting into his age-36 season only one 12 months faraway from a PED suspension — can be Diaz. There was no cause why they must surrender such a precious asset (Kelenic) whereas taking over such a distressed one (Cano).
Now, for individuals who assume I’m partaking in my very own revisionist historical past, that isn’t the case. And there are receipts.
Here’s what I wrote on Nov. 29, 2018, earlier than the commerce occurred:
In iterations of this deal that had the Mets getting Cano and Diaz whereas unloading Bruce and giving up a prospect of the non-Kelenic selection, it appeared too good to be true. A deal that has the identical normal parameters however consists of Kelenic? That can be too unhealthy to be true.
The thought of getting Cano (who’s 36 years outdated however nonetheless extremely productive) whereas unloading Bruce and including arguably the perfect nearer in baseball is tantalizing. But if it comes on the expense of Kelenic, the Mets ought to transfer on and easily signal one of many many high-impact relievers accessible on the free agent market.
Yes, many prospects flame out. But so do relievers. And buying and selling the form of high-impact participant Kelenic might be within the deal for Cano is senseless. Justin Dunn? Sure. Andres Gimenez? Sure. But Kelenic ought to be off limits.
At this level, I’ll notice how precious Diaz has been as a Met. They ought to be extremely grateful they’ve him and ought to be making a robust effort to increase him. But once more, it mustn’t have taken Kelenic to get Diaz — not when the Mets have been taking over Cano’s contract. Another prospect with a lot decrease worth? Fine. But not Kelenic.
And that brings us again to why the Mets buying and selling Kelenic within the Cano and Diaz deal won’t ever be good, regardless of how Kelenic’s profession seems.
If Kelenic flames out so badly that he is out of the league in a couple of years? The Mets nonetheless made a mistake by buying and selling him within the deal for Cano and Diaz.
If Kelenic turns into a median participant? The Mets nonetheless made a mistake by buying and selling him within the deal for Cano and Diaz.
If Kelenic rebounds and turns into a star? The Mets nonetheless made a mistake by buying and selling him within the deal for Cano and Diaz, and it’ll sting that rather more.
To reiterate, the Mets traded a prime prospect with big worth in a deal the place his identify should not have even been allowed to be mentioned. It was a horrible allocation of sources, and that may’t be erased.
That doesn’t suggest the Mets should not be thrilled by what they’ve gotten from Diaz (and what they will hopefully proceed to get from him past this season).
And it doesn’t suggest that they have been unable to soak up the hit of Cano’s sunk value. Steve Cohen giving the Mets clearance to maneuver on from Cano (who will land with the San Diego Padres) earlier this season was monumental, and helped blunt the error that was buying him within the first place.
But you’ll be able to’t get again worth that was wasted. And regardless of how Kelenic’s profession seems, the Mets buying and selling him within the method that they did will at all times be a waste.