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The Mets Really Should Look to Trade Jose Reyes

The Mets are 35-38 and just at 10.5 games back in the competitive NL East, but it might as well be closing time on their season. Ike Davis is probably out for the season and may need dreaded microfracture surgery. There’s still no timetable for the return of their best pitcher, Johan Santana. Is it impressive they’re only three games under .500? Certainly. Smoke and mirrors and Reyes and Beltran and something called Dillon Gee = mild success.

Two Reasons to trade Reyes before it’s too late:

* Upcoming schedule: at Texas (first place), at Detroit (second place), vs. the Yankees (tied for first place with a win tonight), at the Dodgers, at the Giants (second place). The Mets come out of the All-Star break to host the Phillies for three games. Including their next two games against a putrid Oakland team, 13 of the Mets’ next 19 games will be against teams with winning records. Is a 6-13 record during that stretch too optimistic?

* Reyes gave the Mets the stiff-arm when they tried to negotiate with him recently.

Why not start the rebuilding now? Spare me the, “but if you trade Reyes, nobody will come to the ballpark!” line. The longer you wait to trade Reyes, the less you’re likely to get in return because once the season is a lost cause, and New York dangles their shortstop to the highest bidder, they’ll have zero leverage. Not to mention the number of teams in the postseason mix will dwindle at the All-Star break.

This idea that the Mets are in the wild card hunt is a myth. Pure fiction. They’re 6.5 back, but there are seven teams ahead of them in the Wild Card race. They should run to anyone on the cusp of the playoffs (Giants, Cardinals, Reds, Tigers, etc) and offer Reyes for MLB-ready prospects. Given those four options – I left the Blue Jays out because not even they think they have a shot of overtaking the Yankees or Red Sox – I’d probably start with the Reds, and then work my way down the list. The Tigers have a very good prospect in Jacob Turner, but little else. Ditto with the Giants (Zack Wheeler, but not much after him). Think the Angels would like an upgrade at shortstop to inject life into that listless offense?

 

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