The New York Mets might have to rethink their trade deadline plans as Zack Wheeler heads to the injured list.
There’s no question that the New York Mets were planning to trade Zack Wheeler to the highest bidder at the trade deadline. But, it just got a lot more difficult for the Mets to move Wheeler before July 31.
Breaking: Zack Wheeler is being placed on the injured list with right shoulder fatigue, a source says.
The IL move is retroactive to Friday, so the soonest he can return is July 23. That leaves Wheeler with two starts max before the trade deadline.
— Tim Healey (@timbhealey) July 15, 2019
The best case scenario for the Mets would be if Wheeler is able to return from the IL a week or so before the deadline. The 29-year-old will need to prove he’s fully healthy before the Mets will be able to trade him.
Not too mention, the Mets won’t be able to receive quality players in return for Wheeler if teams aren’t sure about his health. Wheeler was one of the top pitchers on the trade market before this injury.
Through 19 starts this season, Wheeler is currently pitching with a 4.69 ERA, 1.277 WHIP, 3.66 FIP, and a 9.8 SO/9.
But, the Mets could be forced to keep him for the rest of the season if he’s unable to return to the mound before the deadline.
Person close to Zack Wheeler says that he's fine and should be back pitching in time to be traded by July 31. Being seen as a blip. We shall see.
— Andy Martino (@martinonyc) July 15, 2019
Hopefully, this recent report is true and Wheeler will be able to return to the Mets with plenty of time for him to build his trade value back up.
If Wheeler requires just the minimum 10 days on the IL, then he would be eligible to return on July 23. This would allow Wheeler to make two starts before the deadline.
Before Wheeler’s injury, the Mets were reportedly setting the price high for the soon-to-be free agent. The Mets may have to significantly lower their asking price on Wheeler or risk receiving nothing in return if he doesn’t re-sign this offseason.