While two of the Mets’ free-agent pitchers are of decent quality, their price tags make them not worth pursuing for the KC Royals.
Rick Porcello is just four years removed from a Cy Young Award season and two years ago posted a 17-7 record with a 1.18 WHIP. His pitching has suffered the last two campaigns but even a low-end $6 million contract—and he could get close to $10m—seems to be a stretch.
While Justin Wilson has had three very good seasons in his career, the low ERAs the last three years mask the WHIPs at 1.33 and above. Relievers need to be able to come in and close out rallies, but as late as 2019 he allowed 38% of inherited runners to score. A $5-$7 million cost is too much to pay for that.
A steady presence from the bullpen, Jared Hughes will turn 36 next summer. His numbers cratered in 2020 from where they had been and the KC Royals’ bullpen is not an area that needs to be fixed, essentially rendering Hughes unnecessary.
Multiple backstop options
Three catchers who saw playing time for the Mets this summer all have the ability to move elsewhere this offseason. The big name is Wilson Ramos, who has provided double-digit home run power and good defensive skills for most of his career.
While he could be a nice plug-in for Salvador Perez, it appears Kansas City has no intention of moving its Silver Slugger catcher to a new position in the near future. Hunter Dozier will be given every chance at first base and Jorge Soler has the DH spot locked in. Neither side should want to reach an agreement for a part-time player.
One might think more attention would be paid to Robinson Chirinos. Prior to 2020, he averaged 17 home runs in just about two-thirds of a season playing time. He also throws out roughly 25% of would-be base stealers. He is worth taking a look at for the backup role.
Also on that list is Rene Rivera. A 12-year major league veteran, he is used to being option No. 2 behind the plate. He will not blow anyone away offensively, but he has been successful throwing out runners 36% of the time.