J.T. Realmuto, who just happens to be one of the better catchers in baseball.
Realmuto’s name was prominently featured front and center in trade talks with the New York Mets.
The Mets had a glaring need at the position, and Realmuto is one of the best in baseball.
It seemed like a match made in heaven, except for the cost.
The Miami Marlins have floated Realmuto’s name in trade rumors in the past, but the asking price has been extravagant and outrageous.
In a potential three-team trade, the Mets could have landed their man behind the plate, but it would’ve cost them one of their aces on the mound in Noah Syndergaard.
It was a debate that was lighting up the phone lines at WFA, and as interesting water cooler chatter around the office.
Would you trade Noah Syndergaard for one of the best catchers in baseball? Thankfully, the Mets had the same answer that I did.
If the Mets are serious in being a “win now” team, it will be impossible to do that without Syndergaard and 2018 NL Cy Young winner Jacob deGrom at the top of the rotation.
The Mets were wise enough to realize that if the asking price for Realmuto was going to be Syndergaard, there is no way to make that deal.
That said, the Mets could not have a successful offseason without a significant upgrade behind the plate.
On Sunday, the Mets put their pursuit of Realmuto in the rearview mirror and signed one of the better free agent catchers on the market in Wilson Ramos to a two-year, $19 million contract.
Ramos is exactly what this team needs. He has hit his entire career, he has experience playing – successfully - in the National League East, and last year he was selected to the NL All-Star squad.
The difference between Realmuto and Ramos is not as drastic as the difference between Syndergaard and the best available free agent pitcher.
There is still much work to be done for the Mets this offseason. They still need a left-handed reliever and a center fielder who hits from the right side of the plate.
However, with the additions of Robinson Cano, Wilson Ramos, Edwin Diaz and the return of Jeurys Familia, they are a much better team than the one we saw at the end of last season.
But in order to make this a complete roster that has a chance to legitimately compete in the National League, those final touches to the roster are crucial for a return to respectability.
You can listen to me Wednesday, Thursday & Friday in for Mike Francesa from 3 to 6:30 p.m., Sunday from 2 to 6 a.m. & Monday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with Bart Scott on WFAN Sports Radio 660/1019 FM. You can also watch me Sunday at 11 p.m. on Geico Sportsnight on SNY.
JJ’s Week 16 Unlocks
• Baltimore +4.5
• Cleveland -7
• Indianapolis -9
• Seattle +2.5
• Philadelphia -1