The New York Mets figure to be in buying mode as the Aug. 2 trade deadline approaches considering they are in first place in the National League East and attempting to hold off the defending champion Atlanta Braves.
That said, a potential blockbuster with the Chicago Cubs is reportedly far from being finalized.
According to Andy Martino of SNY, talks about a trade that would send catcher Willson Contreras and reliever David Robertson to the Big Apple are "preliminary" at this stage, with neither side exchanging "concrete trade proposals."
Chicago and New York made headlines last year when the Cubs traded Javier Baez and Trevor Williams to the Mets. Baez, like Contreras, was an integral part in the North Siders' ability to snap their championship drought and win the 2016 World Series, which made him a fan favorite in the Windy City.
Martino noted that trade was almost more extensive, as the Cubs explored moving Contreras and Craig Kimbrel to the Mets as well.
There has been plenty of back-and-forth between the front offices, although Martino suggested "the Mets' unwillingness to further deplete their top-heavy farm system could ultimately be a roadblock" even if they do include catcher Tomás Nido in a deal.
Chicago is still in rebuild mode after trading franchise legends Baez, Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant last season. It would surely need prospects back in any swap to further accelerate that rebuild, so any unwillingness to engage on that front from New York could be a deal-breaker.
Contreras would be a notable addition as a three-time All-Star who brings power on offense and a strong arm behind the plate on defense.
He is slashing .258/.373/.470 with 14 home runs and 37 RBI this season and is a playoff-tested performer who is accustomed to playing in the spotlight of a major market. All of that plays for a New York team that is in championship-or-bust mode.
Robertson is also used to playing in New York, considering he was a member of the Yankees from 2008 through 2014 and again in 2017 and 2018. The 2009 World Series champion and 2011 All-Star has a sparkling 1.83 ERA, 0.99 WHIP and 50 strikeouts in 39.1 innings this season.
The right-hander could help shorten games near the back end of the Mets bullpen come playoff time if a trade is completed.
Yet it seems as if there are still some obstacles to overcome to make that happen.