The Time To Trade Billy Wagner Is Now

Phil HoopsCorrespondent IAugust 10, 2009

NEW YORK - JULY 15:  National League All-Star Billy Wagner #13 of the New York Mets pitches during the 79th MLB All-Star Game at Yankee Stadium on July 15, 2008 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Every day that goes by that the Mets hang onto Billy Wagner, they decrease the trade value of the Hall of Fame closer.

As it stands now, the Mets will not make the playoffs, and are a club looking forward to next season.

Even before their financial and managerial woes, the Mets have made it pretty clear that Wagner’s tenure with the club would end after this season.

So why are they holding onto him?

Teams may step back from Wagner until he fully rehabilitates, but he topped out in the mid 90's and pitched five scoreless innings in his last minor league outing.

If he were traded now, the Mets could possibly net one or two decent prospects from a team in need of bullpen help.

A perfect trading partner would be the Rays, who have bullpen struggles as Troy Percival is on the verge of calling it quits due to injuries.

Tampa has a slew of young talent, whom the Mets could really use to help improve their porous minor league system.

But only time will tell whether or not Omar will swing a deal.

However, if he allows Wagner to walk at the end of the year and get nothing in return, than Minaya too deserves to be on his way out as well.