The New York Mets had a very disappointing 2021 campaign, considering the huge preseason expectations.
Injuries, under-performances, disciplinary issues, and even a small feud with fans were part of the menu.
However, the organization is still shooting for the stars and aims to start over in 2022.
To have a chance, they need to make a statement signing or three.
These players can help.
3. Noah Syndergaard
It’s fun to think about the Mets’ rotation next year with a healthy Noah Syndergaard.
‘Thor’, who missed all of 2020 and most of 2021 while rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, returned in September to pitch a couple of relief innings.
Doctors recommended him to throw only fastballs and changeups, because curveballs and sliders would represent a risk to his surgically-repaired elbow.
However, those restrictions are expected to be lifted come spring training.
That means that Syndergaard should have a normal spring and occupy a rotation spot next year.
That is if the ream re-signs him.
A multi-year deal is probably out of the question, since teams, including the Mets, would probably want to see how he bounces back from surgery.
He currently has a one-year, $18.4 million offer from the Mets: the qualifying offer.
It’s easy to see the pitcher taking it, returning for one more season, and rebuilding his value before testing the market next fall.
I expect Syndergaard to accept the QO, but I’m into him.
— Scott Mitchell (@ScottyMitchTSN) November 8, 2021
After all, he is a career 3.32 ERA pitcher who should be in line for a huge multi-year pact if he proves he is healthy in 2022.
If someone offers a multi-year pact worth something close to that $18.4 million average annual value, he may leave; but in the event of a one-year deal, he is likely to stay.
2. Marcus Stroman
Retaining Marcus Stroman should be the Mets’ number one priority this winter.
There is a lot of uncertainty surrounding Jacob deGrom’s elbow, and the team needs someone they can rely on to pitch big innings in a huge market.
Stroman confirmed this season that he can handle the bright lights.
He had a shiny 3.02 ERA in 179 frames, with a solid 21.6 strikeout rate and a healthy 50.8 percent groundball rate.
He carried the rotation at times in the absence of deGrom, and the Mets really need all the quality arms they can get if they are going to mount a challenge for the division.
1. Kris Bryant
The Mets have been flirting with Kris Bryant for quite some time now.
His name came up in trade rumors before the 2021 season and also prior to the trade deadline.
That’s because he is a top hitter, a good and versatile fielder, and has the resume you would look for in a free agent signing.
Yes, it’s not hard to see the Mets allocating resources to re-signing Javier Baez instead of Bryant.
But they do have Robinson Cano returning next year and a huge hole at third base.
Third base happens to be Bryant’s primary position.
The former NL MVP was very good in 2021, hitting .265/.353/.481 with 25 dingers between the Chicago Cubs and the San Francisco Giants.
The Mets absolutely should be in on Kris Bryant. Bryant’s one of the top free agents on the market, and he’d vastly improve the Mets lineup, while also possessing the versatility to play third base and both corner OF positions. If they like the price the Mets should sign him https://t.co/rivX1gE0up
— Scott Long (@scott_long5) November 10, 2021
He could be the missing piece in the Mets infield.NEXT: 3 Potential Landing Spots For Michael Conforto In Free Agency