Mets Trade Rumors: Starling Marte Talks Revisited with Pirates

Blake SchusterContributor IIIJanuary 19, 2020

PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 07:  Starling Marte #6 of the Pittsburgh Pirates in action against the St Louis Cardinals at PNC Park on September 7, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

The New York Mets have reengaged the Pittsburgh Pirates in trade talks for outfielder Starling Marte.

According to MLB insider Robert Murray, no deal is imminent. The Arizona Diamondbacks are also believed to be involved in talks for the 31-year-old. 

Marte slashed .295/.342/.503 last season with 23 home runs and 82 RBI. 

Notably, an outfielder isn't the Mets' biggest need. After parting ways with Carlos Beltran because of his 2017 involvement in the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal, New York does not have a manager as the Feb. 12 spring training report date for pitchers and catchers looms. 

Clearly the replacement interview process hasn't stopped general manager Brodie Van Wagenen from trying to retool his roster.

The Mets were last connected to Marte in late December, when MLB Network's Jon Heyman reported they were exchanging names with the Pirates. As Heyman noted, the Mets were willing to part with Brandon Nimmo, but the Pirates were looking for prospects rather than a 26-year-old coming off an injury-filled year.

Aside from the D-backs, the San Diego Padres and Texas Rangers were also making calls regarding Marte in late December.

Marte enters this season with an $11.5 million salary and a club option for 2021. Those two seasons of control aren't as exciting for prospective trade partners as the offense he provides in the middle of a lineup. For teams looking to contend in the next few years, it's a gamble worth taking. 

Depending on how serious the Mets are about acquiring the outfielder, they have the young pieces to entice Pittsburgh. Shortstop Ronny Mauricio is the No. 80 prospect, according to MLB Pipeline, and third baseman Brett Baty is right behind him at No. 81.