The relief pitcher market is a dangerous one to enter, since predicting year to year success is nearly impossible. Still, the Mets bullpen continues to cost the team wins, making the risk more and more necessary as the season continues. If there is a trend for relief success, it seems to be younger power arms with starter pedigree. Here are 5 names for the New York Mets to consider.
Alex Colome, RHP, Tampa Bay, 28
Colome has electric stuff. He came up as a starter for the Rays in 2013. His WHIP this year is under 1. All the makings of a can’t miss reliever. The Mets would have to pay quite a bit to acquire him. Of course, Conforto and Rosario are absolutely off limits.
Rasiel Iglesias, RHP, Cincinnati, 27
The native of Cuba came to the States as a starting pitcher in 2015. The Reds decided he would be better as a reliever last year because of injury concerns. It has paid off. Iglesias currently sports 0.89 ERA and is averaging more than a strikeout per inning. Like Colome, it would take an impressive collection of players to get him.
Felipe Rivero, LHP, Pittsburgh, 25
Unlike Colome and Iglesias, Rivero has been a relief pitcher his entire Major League career. He came up with the Nationals in 2015, so the Mets know first hand how good his stuff is. The Pirates have turned him into an elite reliever and his ERA for the season is under 1. With the Pirates struggling, the Mets could be willing to part with elite prospects (Not Rosario) for Rivero.
Kelvin Hererra, RHP, Kansas City, 27
The Mets saw Herrera during the 2015 World Series. He has one of the best arms in baseball but is struggling a little bit this season with a 3.38 ERA, and less than a strikeout per inning so far. The Royals are in last place in the AL Central, and could eventually be willing to part with Herrera for younger players. The Mets may have to look into acquiring the right hander at some point if they intend to compete for the NL East.
Arodys Vizcaino, RHP, Atlanta, 26
If the Mets want to go a tier lower in the relief market, Vizcaino could be a player to watch. They see him quite a bit being in the NL East. Vizcaino can hit 100 MPH on the radar gun, is young at 26, and could be expendable to team unlikely to compete for a playoff spot. Would Atlanta be willing to trade him in division? That remains to be seen. But the Mets could sure use an arm like his in the back of their pen.
Who would the Mets trade?
Many fans will say, well who are we going to trade? Since Rosario and Conforto are off limits, and Dominic Smith and Justin Dunn are too valuable to trade for a relief pitcher, that leaves names like Thomas Szapucki, Brandon Nimmo, Gavin Cecchini, Andres Giminez, and Tomas Nido. As far as Major League players, Steven Matz, Juan Lagaras, Kevin Plawecki and Robert Gsellman could all be names to watch.