Is Freddie Freeman a Good Fit for the Mets?

Major League Baseball is back, bay-bay! After the MLBPA and the owners have come to an agreement, teams are now again allowed to negotiate deals with free agents. One of those free agents that are set to garnish a lot of attention is first baseman Freddie Freeman.

The feeling and perception around the league is that Freeman has played his last games with the Braves and plans to be moving on, as reported by Joel Sherman.

There aren’t too many MLB teams that would refuse Freddie Freeman and what he has to bring to the table, offensively as well as defensively. While Freeman is already at the age of 32, he hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down just yet.

It’s been rumored that the Tampa Bay Rays have shown interest before the lockout took place, as well as the Los Angeles Dodgers even offering Freeman a multi-year deal.

The first baseman hit .300/.393/.503/.893 in 600 AB’s for the Braves in during the 2021 campaign, along side 31 home runs and 25 doubles. Freeman took home the Silver Slugger Award while also leading the league in runs scored in what could be his final season in Atlanta.

The Braves did put an offer of $135M on the table throughout five years, however it’s said that the former MVP has his eyes set on at least a six year pact.

The deal is going to take some serious commitments in the form of cash and the amount of years involved. But with Steve Cohen seemingly willing to go the extra mile, it isn’t completely out of the question.

What if the Mets made a deal? How would it effect them?

It would give the Mets a number three hitter for at least two to three years in the form of a solid defensive glove at first. Former Mets catcher and current analyst on SNY, Anthony Recker has stated in a segment that Freeman is the type of player that still wants to be on the field.

It’s a valid statement considering we’ve heard the same from Pete Alonso, also a first baseman. With the DH set to take over, it does give the Mets the option to have both players in the lineup.

However, this would likely force Dom Smith off of the Mets roster. While he’d be an obviously great bat off the bench, a trade would give the team the chance to acquire a middle of the rotation arm or even replenish the MiLB system.

But the answer is “Duh!”, Freeman is a great fit for the Mets.

Photo: Fox Sports

Mets to acquire Rich Hill

The New York Mets are finalizing a deal to acquire Rich Hill from the Tampa Bay Rays. The deal is said to be done and is pending a physical.

In 19 starts, the left-hander is 6-4 with an ERA of 3.87 while having struck out 91 batters in 95.1 innings pitched. Hill will likely be slotted behind Marcus Stroman as the teams number two pitcher until Jacob deGrom returns, and then likely pushed to the number three starter.

In his career, Hill is 73-48 with an ERA of 3.80 in 1071.1 innings pitched.

In return, the Mets will send the Rays pitcher Tommy Hunter and catcher Matt Dyer.

McNeil exits game

New York Mets second baseman Jeff McNeil, who was serving as the DH on Sunday afternoon, has been taken out of the game. McNeil will be replaced by catcher Patrick Mazeika as the DH.

McNeil is leaving the game due to tightness is his left hamstring.

Conforto exits game

New York Mets right-fielder Michael Conforto has exited Sunday afternoon’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays. Utility-man Jake Hager has come in to replace Conforto.

Conforto pulled up lame at first base after grounding into an inning ending double play to end the top of the first.

Hager has never played a game professionally in right-field.

MetsJunkies Recap: Mets stung by Rays

Rays starter Tyler Glasnow came firing out of the gate as he pretty much breezed through the first three innings. However, the Mets would tag Glasnow in the fourth as Kevin Pillar would single to reach base after retiring the first 14 batters.

Jonathan Villar would follow Pillar with a two-run shot to give the Mets the 2-0 lead.

David Peterson would put on a clinic of his own. The left-hander retired 17 straight at one point, then came along catcher Mike Zunino with a solo shot in the Eighth. While Peterson was pitching an excellent game, Luis Rojas mysteriously had no one ready in the bullpen.

Kevin Padlo would follow Zunino with his first Major League hit, a double. Rojas would eventually bring in Trevor May to relieve Peterson and May labor in 0.2 innings.

After getting Randy Arozarena to line out to Villar at third, Manuel Margot would go down the same line but with a double to tie the contest at two. Margot is now currently hitting an astronomical .388 against the Mets.

Shockingly, Rojas would still not have any arms ready in the pen. Fortunately, May would finally put down Austin Meadows via strike out to end the bottom half of the eighth.

After a two-out hit by Pillar as well Villar reaching base via error, James McCann would ground out to first base to end the inning and rally.

While we’ve given Miguel Castro a ton of praise on MetsJunkies.com, this evening Castro would load up the bases. With left-handed hitting Joey Wendle coming up to bat, that would get Luis Rojas to bring in lefty Aaron Loup.

However, Brett Phillips would turn out to be the hero for the Rays as he hit a single into right field to win the game. Castro would get the loss as the Mets fall to 18-14, however still hold a lead over the Phillies in the NL East.

David Peterson-7.1, 4 H’s, 2 ER’s, 2 BB’s, 9 K’s.

Kevin Pillar-2-4, 1 run.

Friday’s Pitching Preview & Lineup 5/14

The 18-13 New York Mets will play a two-game set against the Tampa Bay Rays to kick off the series down in Florida.

The Mets plan to send left-hander David Peterson to the bump, making his seventh appearance of the campaign. The Colorado native is 1-3 with a 5.54 ERA with 32 K’s in 26.0 innings pitched.

Peterson picked up the “No-Decision” in his last outing against the Diamondbacks on the 7th of May. He only pitched 1.2 innings while having surrendered three runs on three hits, as well as walking three.

The Tampa Bay Rays will have 27-year old Tyler Glasnow on the hill, a right-hander coming off of a loss against the Oakland Athletics on the 8th. This will be the Mets’ fourth time seeing Glasnow since the 2017 season.

This season, Glasnow owns a 4-2 record with a 2.37 ERA, while striking out 75 in 49.1 innings of work.

First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM EST and will be televised locally on SNY.

Friday’s Pitching Preview 5/14

The 18-13 New York Mets will play a two-game set against the Tampa Bay Rays to kick off the series down in Florida.

The Mets plan to send left-hander David Peterson to the bump, making his seventh appearance of the campaign. The Colorado native is 1-3 with a 5.54 ERA with 32 K’s in 26.0 innings pitched.

Peterson picked up the “No-Decision” in his last outing against the Diamondbacks on the 7th of May. He only pitched 1.2 innings while having surrendered three runs on three hits, as well as walking three.

The Tampa Bay Rays will have 27-year old Tyler Glasnow on the hill, a right-hander coming off of a loss against the Oakland Athletics on the 8th. This will be the Mets’ fourth time seeing Glasnow since the 2017 season.

This season, Glasnow owns a 4-2 record with a 2.37 ERA, while striking out 75 in 49.1 innings of work.

First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM EST and will be televised locally on SNY.

Mets recall Drew Smith

Per Anthony DiComo, the Mets have called up right-handed reliever Drew Smith. The Fort Worth, Texas native has yet to appear in the Majors during this 2021 season however pitched to a 6.43 ERA in 2020.

Throughout his career, Smith has posted a 1-2 record with a 4.11 ERA in 35 innings pitched. Smith was of course acquired from the Tampa Bay Rays for DH/First Baseman Lucas Duda.

In return, the Mets have decided to send down reliever Trevor Hildenberger in order to make room.

Mets Claim Catcher from Rays

The Mets have claimed catcher Deivy Grullón from the Rays. The 25 year old from the Dominican Republic has played 5 total games in the majors hitting .167/.231/.250 with one RBI. With the Mets having an open spot on the 40 man roster, they don’t need to DFA anyone.

The right handed hitting catcher was part of the Phillies Top 20 Prospects as recently as 2019.

During the spring in 2021, he hit .231/.333/.692 in 13 at bats. He collected three hits, 2 of them went out of the Park.

Throughout his minor league career, Grullón hit a combined .253/.305/.405 with 70 homeruns in 606 games.

According to scouts Grullón provided above average power on the pull side with a strong throwing arm. He would be the fourth catcher on the 40 man roster with McCann, Nido and Maizeka already on the 40 man.

Photo by: MLB Pipeline

#MetsCrushMonday: Sam McWilliams

The first thing that jumps out at you when you look at Sam McWilliams is that the right-hander is a big guy, standing tall at 6’7”. The Orlando, Florida native would make his way up to Nashville, Tennessee to play high-school baseball before being drafted by the Phillies in the 8th round of the 2014 draft.

While he’s already played for three organizations during his MiLB career, the Mets signed McWilliams to a Major League deal. This may have come as a surprise to some fans, however when you hear that the right-hander had offers from half of the league, not so much of a surprise.

The first thing that jumps out at you after you have a conversation with Sam McWilliams is “Damn, this dude is smart AF!” In a small interview I had with McWilliams on The Mets Junkies Podcast, he gets into how he improved with the Rays organization due to information and analytics.

McWilliams has started in 94 games throughout his MiLB career and in 2019 in 19 starts, the tall righty pitched to a 4.46 ERA as he owned a 2.83 ERA as a reliever that same campaign. Him being able to start games comes of great value to him and the Mets but I think his bread and butter might end up being him working from the bullpen.

He’ll likely start off in Syracuse as he has three of his options remaining, but I’d imagine that we’ll be seeing a lot of McWilliams in the Majors. He very well could be one of the unsung heroes of 2021, if all work outs accordingly.

Sean Connor Flannery:

In 2019, I had the great pleasure of working with the Montgomery Biscuits the AA affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays in a data collection role. During that season McWilliams was named to the Southern League All Star game.

McWilliams is nothing flashy but anytime you can poach an arm from the TBR system and player development is usually a good thing. He doesn’t have an “electric” fastball but uses his 6’7/6’8 height to get pretty good extension and it allows the FB to play up. The slider is his best pitch and he’s got a passable change and fringey curve.

I see him being like the 8th SP on the 40 behind guys like Szapucki/Oswalt/Kilome. While he doesn’t have the upside of the first and last guy on that list he’s got the command and full repertoire like Oswalt. He should be solid depth in Syracuse in ‘21.

Photo from ESPN.com