The Mets surprised many and were buyers at the deadline, acquiring RHP Marcus Stroman from the Blue Jays for a pair of pitching prospects in Anthony Kay and Simeon Woods-Richardson. Breakdown of the players involved, courtesy of CSB, below:
Career Stats (6 years):
W/L - 47-45
ERA - 3.76
K/9 - 7.2
BB/9 - 2.5
WHIP - 1.28
IPS - 5.2
W/L - 6-11
ERA - 2.96
K/9 - 7.1
BB/9 - 2.5
WHIP - 1.23
IPS - 6.0
Yes, IPS stands for Innings Per Start and I just made it up. It's a good stat. Welcome to Sabremetrics.
While Stroman's 2019 record leaves much to be desired, any Mets fan can tell you that W/L records don't mean shit for pitchers, especially on shit teams. Jacob deGrom was 10-9 last year with a 1.70 ERA. Go figure that.
Outside of his record, Stroman is having about an on-par year with his career stats. A sub-3 ERA in the 2019 AL East is impressive and Stroman's first half was good enough to be named an American League All Star. He brings to the mound a mid 90s mph fastball, low 80s mph curveball, 85 mph slider, mid 80s changeup, and a high 80s/low 90s mph cutter. Standing at 5'8" on a good day, Stroman is one of only six pitchers under 5'10" to make a start at the MLB level since the turn of the century.
Stroman's most notable accomplishment to me comes from 2016 playing for team USA when he mowed down Puerto Rico for 6 shutout innings in the WBC Championship game, earning himself the tournament MVP award. USA! USA! USA!
And of course, no Stroman-to-the-Mets blog would be complete without mentioning that Marcus played High School baseball in Long Island as a rival to Steven Matz. So we've got that going for us. Which is nice.
Welcome to the Mets Marcus. I'm sure you'll hate it here like the rest of us.
Blue Jays Acquire:
Anthony Kay is a hefty lefty who dominated AA ball this season but has struggled since his promotion to AAA Syracuse. Kay was drafted by the Mets with their second 1st round pick (31st overall) of the 2016 draft (the other 1st rounder that year was Justin Dunn who Brodie traded to Seattle for Cano/Diaz) out of UConn. Kay suffered from elbow soreness and underwent Tommy John surgery after being drafted, which lost him a year of experience in the pros. He has since recovered and shown no signs of lingering fatigue.
Kay can hit mid 90s with his fastball and has nice break on a low 80s mph curveball. He was due for a call-up late this season or early next season, but at 24 years old with no historical success at any level above AA, the Mets decided it was time to move on from the former 1st round pick to make room for a potential ace in Stroman.
Simeon-Woods Richardson was drafted by the Mets in the 2nd round of the 2018 draft out of Kempner High School in Sugarland, TX. The 6'3" 210 lb righty throws upwards of 97 mph with his fastball with an effective curevball and changeup off-speed. He's only 18 years old, with no experience beyond Single A, so his story is yet to be told. The Blue Jays believe in his potential and he certainly has the build and makings of an MLB starter a few years down the road.
Who won the trade?
Overall, as a Mets fan I am happy with the trade. Giving up on prospects when the team is 5 games under .500 in basically August is usually a bad sign from the front office, but losing Kay and SWR is worth it for a return of a potential ace who has 1.5 years of arbitration control left. If nothing else, adding Stroman projects well for the Mets in 2020 and potentially beyond if they can sign him to an extension.
For the Blue Jays, they sold high on Stroman and returned two young pitchers that both have potential to make an MLB rotation. Kay is 24, which is on the older end for a prospect, but I wouldn't be surprised to see him make his MLB debut this season. And if the Jays trust their development system, SWR could be a guy that redeems the Blue Jays front office for trading Syndergaard to the Mets for RA Dickey.