On the heels of a four-game losing streak, the New York Mets made two very questionable trades at the deadline to boost their playoff chances.
The New York Mets beat the trade deadline buzzer to acquire three veterans in two trades. According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the Mets traded top pitching prospect Kevin Smith and a player to be named later to the Baltimore Orioles for Miguel Castro.
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) August 31, 2020
This is a questionable move. Kevin Smith is one of the Mets’ best pitching prospects and could have made his debut as soon as 2020. He would likely have been nothing more than a backend starter, but given the team’s lack of pitching depth, especially starting pitching, Smith was an incredibly valuable asset.
He goes to the Orioles in exchange for a Miguel Castro, who is a mediocre reliever. Castro, 25, has a 4.02 ERA, 3.71 FIP, and 13.8 K/9 in 2020. This has been by far Castro’s best season. For his career, Castro has a 4.30 ERA, 4.94 FIP, and 7.23 K/9.
Castro throws three pitches, a fastball, slider, and changeup. His fastball is his best pitch sitting at 98 mph and his changeup is his best secondary pitch sitting at 91 mph. His slider usage is up in 2020, and he’s throwing it harder than ever at 86 mph.
The Mets are hoping that Castro becomes a staple in their bullpen. The righty is under contract for both 2021 and 2022.
According to John Blake of the Texas Rangers, the Mets also acquired Robinson Chirinos and Todd Frazier for two players to be named later.
Prior to today’s 3 pm CT trade deadline, the Rangers completed 2 separate trades with the New York Mets: C Robinson Chirinos and cash considerations for a PTBNL. INF Todd Frazier for a PTBNL. A
— John Blake (@RangerBlake) August 31, 2020
Whatever the Mets gave up for Frazier and Chirinos is too much. Neither player has played well in 2020. Frazier has seemingly lost his power, he’s slugging just .380 in 2020, and has provided poor defense. He’s worth -0.2 fWAR.
Chirinos is even worse. The 36-year-old catcher has never provided much offensively, but he’s been a nightmare in 2020 hitting just .119/.224/.143. He used to make up for that with his defensive prowess, but that’s gone. Chirinos is 76 in catcher FRAA in 2020. He’s worth -0.5 fWAR.
Both players aren’t likely to play more than one season with the Mets. Making the move even more confusing.
The Mets added negative value to the team while shipping out prospects in two trades today. Considering the team is five games below .500 and on a four-game losing streak, these deals make even less sense.