On a sweltering Thursday afternoon last week, Mets fans in attendance for a 'camp day' game against the St. Louis Cardinals gave outfielder Carlos Beltran a light standing ovation when he came to the plate in the 9th. The fans realized that it would likely be Beltran's last at bat as a Met, and rightly so.
Despite playing above expectations considering the injuries they've dealt with, the New York Mets are not a playoff contender this year. After the front office declared that Jose Reyes would not be moving at the deadline, Beltran became the new focus of trade rumors. In the last year of a 7-year contract, Beltran has found some of the pop that enticed the Mets to bring him to Queens following 2004. Now that he's on the verge of departure, five teams are contending for his services.
This article will go through those five teams and highlight who the Mets could possibly expect to get back in a trade with each club.
With Jarred Cosart reportedly untouchable and Brody Colvin at about the same level, the Mets could look to land Trevor May (RHP). May's considered a solid prospect, but doesn't have the scouted ceiling of Cosart or Colvin. With the Mets looking to load up on pitching for the future, the 21-year-old May would be a good place to start.
Additionally, the Mets could look at young lefty Jesse Biddle. Only 19, his ceiling has been said to be a number one or two starter in the bigs. A left handed ace is always nice to have.
If the Mets want an outfielder, they could take a stab at Domingo Santana or Aaron Altherr, both very raw prospects with loads of potential.
The Giants have long been rumored to be the favorite to land Beltran, but it might cost them a pretty penny. Stud pitching prospect Zack Wheeler might be the star of any deal, with strong secondary pitches and years to develop.
High risk center fielder Gary Brown's name has also been thrown around, as the Mets seem to be set in the corners for the future but are looking to lock down the middle of their outfield. Acquiring Wheeler or Brown would be solid for the Mets.
If neither are made available, they could look for a package involving 2B Charlie Culberson and/or pitcher Eric Surkamp.
The Braves are the Mets' other eastern rival angling on Beltran. Like the Phillies, the Mets would most certainly demand a higher price for trading within the division. Julio Teheran seems untouchable, but the next step down in terms of Atlanta pitching prospects seems within reach.
Arodys Vizcaino, Mike Minor or Randall Delgado would be a great return in any Carlos Beltran deal. However, if Frank Wren is not willing to part with them, the Mets could turn to Philadelphia for a deal, as the other top prospects in the Braves' organization don't really fit the Mets needs.
Although Beltran would prefer to stay in the National League, the Mets are still fielding interest from a pair of big time contenders in the junior circuit. One of those teams is the Boston Red Sox, where Beltran would fit nicely into right field.
Any trade with Boston could start with Josh Reddick, as the young outfielder would be squeezed out of regular playing time if Beltran were acquired. Reddick would have a decent chance to start in New York right away with the new void in right field and the only other young option on the Mets roster to play that corner being Lucas Duda.
The Mets could also try to snag pitchers Anthony Ranaudo or Stolmy Pimentel, or possibly second baseman Oscar Tejeda.
The clear outsiders in the Beltran sweepstakes, the Texas Rangers would almost certainly have to part with a top pitching prospect to add the switch-hitting slugger for the pennant race.
The Mets would almost certainly start any talks with Martin Perez, but would be wise to look at the glut of young arms Texas has, such as Tanner Scheppers or Robbie Ross, or possibly outfielder Jake Skole.