mets trade rumors justin verlander
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As we sit here on Tuesday morning, we’ve finally made it to trade deadline day. Mets trade rumors are running rampant, but not the ones we would’ve expected back in February. Of all the rumors swirling, the biggest ones involve starting pitcher Justin Verlander.

UPDATE, 8/1/23 11:55 a.m. EDT: As more rumors fly, it seems like the Padres are that “mystery team” referred to below, while the Dodgers, Astros, Orioles, and Braves (barf) are also in the mix. 

On Monday morning, it seemed like the Dodgers were the only logical landing spot for JV. But here we are 24 hours later, and there are at least four different possibilities being tossed around.

The Astros have been connected to Verlander for a while, but it didn’t seem like Houston and New York would match up on a trade. The Mets don’t want to pay down his salary a ton while netting two top prospects. Houston doesn’t have any Top-100 prospects right now, so a deal hasn’t appeared likely. Even though many people were trying to will it to.

But over the past day or so, the Astros have reportedly jumped back into the rotation market, and Verlander is apparently someone they’re focusing on. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic also said this would be JV’s preferred destination. Since he has a full no-trade clause, he’s in the driver’s seat.

The Dodgers boast a loaded farm system and the ability to handle a high salary. Rosenthal said on Tuesday morning that Los Angeles is still involved, but they’re “seemingly discouraged by their chances”.

A third known team in the Verlander sweepstakes is the Baltimore Orioles. They also have a loaded farm system, lots of payroll flexibility, and their near-term outlook appears to be fantastic. But then again, would Verlander OK a trade to Baltimore? There are some connections, at least:

Last, but most certainly not least, the Padres are apparently involved. Despite a disappointing year, A.J. Preller is at least seeing if they can get reinforcements to keep up with the Dodgers:

Jon Heyman of the New York Post is also reporting there are multiple mystery teams involved:

Now, the following is purely speculation from me. Mostly because it showed up right underneath Heyman’s tweet. Could one be the Los Angeles Angels?

It’s anybody’s guess at this point. We know Mets general manager Billy Eppler is “open-minded” on players under team control through 2024, but who knows how serious they are about trading Verlander at this point?

There are lots of variables and unknowns right now. Mets trade rumors will continue to fly throughout the day. So, we’ll have to take things with a grain of salt before they get confirmed. But based on everything that’s been reported thus far, Mets players to keep an eye on prior to this evening’s deadline include Justin Verlander, Tommy Pham, Brooks Raley, Adam Ottavino, and Omar Narvaez.

You can reach Matt Musico at You can follow him on Twitter: @mmusico8.

Matt Musico is an editor for ESNY. He’s been writing about baseball and the Mets for the past decade. His work has been featured on numberFire, MetsMerized Online, Bleacher Report, and Yahoo! Sports.