Mancuso: Time Of Year To Be GM

You hear the names: Robinson Cano, Noah Syndergaard, Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Patrick Corbin, And then you begin the process of becoming the general manager this time of year and that is expected.  But not all of this trade and free agency talk is true until the transaction is complete.

Believe or don’t what you read and hear.

Baseball and the offseason, and what has become a new season from now until that first pitch on Opening Day.  

One rumor leads to another as does one report lead to another. When the baseball world assembles at the annual Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, December 10-13th, there should be a clearer picture as to the direction where teams are going.  

From sources, and we all have some, here is what has been gathered about the constant talk of Syndergaard moving and Cano relocating again to New York:

Noah Syndergaard: Chances are Syndergaard talk for the moment is where it has been. Rumors and teams still inquire. That proposed move to the Padres is at a standstill as a reliable source confirmed San Diego is not willing to part ways with top prospect Fernando Tatis Jr.

The Mets have been talking about Syndergaard in a potential deal but in return want Major league ready players. Austin Hedges which would end their search for a catcher, Left-hander MacKenzie Gore, a No. 2 prospect  is the other who could fill in a rotation spot.  So this is at a standstill and obvious the Mets will think twice.

If you had to bet, Noah Syndergaard remains in New York. Again, the Winter Meetings could change that thought if the Mets indeed get blown out with an offer they can’t refuse.

Robinson Cano: The topic of discussion. You heard as of Thursday the Mets and Mariners are continuing the work on a possible acquisition of Cano. The Mariners taking on the bulk of his lucrative contract that remains at $120 million through 2003.

A 36-year old Cano does not make the Mets younger. And with Jeff McNeil, who has proved to be a valuable position player at second and at the plate, logic says it makes no sense to add Cano who comes with baggage off a steroid suspension. And this is not the Robinson Cano who once was with the Yankees.

However the logic here is for the Mets to get the closer. Edwin Diaz off a 57-save season, 24-years old, that is enticing and more valuable than Robinson Cano. Mariners want to get younger in their process to rebuild and the Mets reportedly  are contemplating what prospects or current position players to move.

McNeil, as much as his value, could be the key player here. And late Thursday the Mets re-signed Dilson Herrera, to a minor league deal. An old friend who once was going to be their second baseman of the future , Herrera could be the insurance  and we never got to see his real talents during that brief stint with the Mets at Citi Field and in Triple-A Las Vegas.

We can report this deal for Robinso Cano is close. Diaz would be  the key for the Mets. Other players involved are not certain. Reportedly the Mets would part with 2018 No. 6 draft pick Jarred Kelenic and Justin Dunn their top pitching prospect. In a few days this can be official and McNeil could still be a key player headed to Seattle.

Like it or not, Cano on the other side of town,  the Mets need a closer and the beginning to revamp the bullpen is a step closer to reality.

Patrick Corbin: Yankees made their pitch Thursday to the free agent left-hander. And with James Paxton a part of the rotation, this is the other prize if the Yankees get this done. The Phillies and Nationals made their pitch and still in this.

But the Yankees, and with the money available to do this, could eventually be the winner and get the other pitcher for their rotation.  Corbin could be in the Bronx sooner than expected. Enough said here because don’t the Yankees always get what they want, and Corbin has always been sold on the Yankees with his rooting interest always in he Bronx.

Machado and Harper: Here again is the theory of rumors and talks. Yes, the Yankees and Mets have inquired and are keeping their ears open. More and more neither of the top two free agents on the market are making New York as their new home.

A prevailing theory, and also discussed with those in the know, Harper has the best offer from the Phillies and this will all play out. Yankees and Machado could be a good or a bad mix and at some point they could sit down and discuss a move to the Bronx.

Again, money not a factor for the Yankees. With a commitment to spend and a new GM that knows how to wheel and deal, Brodie Van Wagenen has made it known this will be a creative and active offseason to assure the Mets will spend in 2019.

This is not a Yoenis Cespedes situation for the Mets. They were aggressive in their pursuit of Cespedes and not once but twice.  It hasn’t been a perfect marriage for the Mets and Cespedes. It could be with Manny Machado.

If the Mets get Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz, and for the heavy price of top prospects, forget about Manny Machado. You be the GM here and decide.

Remember, rumors at this point. But this is why it is called Hot Stove season.

Comment: [email protected]  Twitter@Ring786 Mancuso


About the Author

Rich Mancuso

Rich Mancuso is a regular contributor at NY Sports Day, covering countless New York Mets, Yankees, and MLB teams along with some of the greatest boxing matches over the years. He is an award winning sports journalist and previously worked for The Associated Press, New York Daily News, Gannett, and, in a career that spans almost 40 years.

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