Kris Bryant is drawing curiosity from a number of groups because the commerce deadline approaches, with MLB Community’s Jon Heyman (Twitter link) reporting that the Mets are one of many golf equipment contemplating the previous NL MVP. There isn’t any indication that the Cubs are near a cope with the Mets or every other group about Bryant, although tonight’s commerce of Joc Pederson signifies that the Cubs are certainly open for enterprise with greater than two weeks to go earlier than the commerce deadline.
This isn’t the primary time that Bryant has been linked to the Mets, as Chicago and New York reportedly had discussions involving Bryant throughout the offseason (although Cubs president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer mentioned reviews of these talks had been inaccurate). Speculatively, if J.D. Davis was certainly mentioned as a part of a possible commerce return and if he’s nonetheless on the Cubs’ radar, it might be that nothing may get executed between the Mets and Cubs about Bryant till Davis makes his anticipated return from the injured listing Friday and exhibits that he’s wholesome. A pair of accidents to Davis’ left hand has restricted him to solely 14 video games this season.
It isn’t a shock that the Mets (or any contender) could be checking in on Bryant, contemplating his potential worth as a difference-maker for a group in October. Bryant has rebounded from an injury-plagued 2020 to hit .271/.353/.502 with 16 homers over 329 plate appearances this season, with the caveat that almost all of that manufacturing got here throughout the first two months. Since June 1, Bryant has solely a .568 OPS and 4 residence runs in 117 PA, and his Statcast numbers are stable total however middling on the subject of laborious contact numbers.
With free company looming this winter, Bryant has loads of incentive to step up massive over the rest of the season and put himself in good place for an enormous free agent contract. Given the commerce hypothesis that has swirled round Bryant for over two years now, it wouldn’t actually be stunning to see him take off on the plate if/when he lastly did get dealt.
The Mets’ projected luxurious tax quantity is roughly $13.5MM beneath the $210MM threshold. Bryant’s remaining wage (he’s owed $19.5MM in 2021) would eat up an enormous chunk of that remaining house and depart the Mets with little wiggle room to make additional additions whereas staying beneath the edge, except another contracts had been moved to the Cubs or in different trades. That mentioned, Mets proprietor Steve Cohen has expressed an openness for crossing the tax threshold in the precise circumstances, and would seemingly relatively blow by the $210MM determine than solely exceed it by a small quantity. If Cohen did authorize such an enormous go-for-it push, the monetary facet of a Bryant commerce won’t be a problem for the Mets.
On the sphere, Bryant clearly brings loads of worth to the NL East leaders. As Heyman notes, Bryant’s means to play a number of positions (each nook infield spots and all three outfield spots) provides to his worth, notably for a New York group that hasn’t gotten a lot manufacturing and has been seeking to solidify third base.