The New York Mets may not have a good shot of making the 2023 playoffs, but they do have money.
A lot of money.
This financial flexibility was put on display at the trade deadline.
What does trading players have to do with money?
Well, it’s simple: if you are a contender looking for impact players but don’t have too much financial flexibility, you will look for cheap players who can actually perform.
The less contenders have to pay for an impact player (in dollars), the better the prospects they are required to give away to acquire this talent.
Take the Justin Verlander deal, for example: why did the Mets net two top-100 prospects in Drew Gilbert and Ryan Clifford if they were dealing a 40-year-old pitcher with a high salary and a recent history of shoulder and elbow issues?
Because they agreed to pay most of his contract.
This has resulted in a shocking financial reality, as illustrated by Front Office Sports on Twitter.
“The Mets are now paying former players over $150 million. That would rank 17th among 2023 MLB payrolls,” they tweeted.
The Mets are now paying former players over $150 million.
That would rank 17th among 2023 MLB payrolls.
— Front Office Sports (@FOS) August 2, 2023
The Mets are 17th in MLB payroll… if we only count players not currently on the roster.
That’s both unbelievable and amazing at the same time.
The same thing they did with Verlander was applied to the Max Scherzer negotiations.
Why did the Mets acquire Luisangel Acuna, a quality prospect in Double-A?
Because they are eating a large portion of Scherzer’s deal.
The same happened with other players they traded.
Some people call it “buying prospects”.
It’s more like clever use of resources at hand.NEXT: Mets Insider Offers A Positive Spin On The Trade Deadline