Just a over a week after the Padres made big splashes in acquiring starters Blake Snell and Yu Darvish, one New York team made an even bigger one. According to MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo, the Cleveland Indians have sent superstar slugger Francisco Lindor and starter Carlos Carrasco to the New York Mets. In return, the Indians will get prospects Josh Wolf and Isaiah Greene, as well as Andres Gimenez and Amed Rosario.
Carrasco instantly helps the Mets rotation, who needed another arm to support Jacob DeGrom, Marcus Stroman and an injury-ridden Noah Syndergaard. The Mets rotation ranked 26th in ERA last year, and Carrasco finished his 2020 shortened season with a 2.91 ERA.
Lindor has been one of the best shortstops in baseball since 2017. He had a down year in 2020, only hitting .258 with 8 home runs, but it was a shortened season. From 2017-2019, he hit at least 30 home runs each season, finished top-10 in MVP voting twice, winning two Silver Sluggers and one Gold Glove. Lindor will be a free agent after the 2021 season and there’s a great chance they’ll re-sign him to a huge contract. The Mets offensively and defensively just got a whole lot better.
So…how does this affect the Phillies?
Let’s address the elephant in the room. J.T. Realmuto. Considered by many as the best catcher in baseball. The Mets were rumored to have interest in signing Realmuto, until they signed James McCann earlier in the offseason. And now with their National League East rival trading for two marquee names, the pressure is on for the Phillies to re-sign Realmuto. The fans have been screaming all year to give Realmuto an extension. Even Bryce Harper has been vocal for his teammate and good friend to be re-signed by the team that gave him a record setting deal in 2019.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Matt Breen, new President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski said this week that the team’s focus is upgrading the bullpen and determining who their starting catcher and shortstop will be. So, not only does this ramp up the pressure on the Phillies to sign Realmuto, it may do the same for Philadelphia to re-sign Didi Gregorius. Gregorius was a big reason why the Phillies had a productive offense in 2020. He hit .284 to go along with 10 home runs and 40 RBI. Not to mention he has a solid glove.
If the Phillies want to even remotely compete in the NL East in 2021, they may need to put all their chips in for Realmuto & Gregorius.
Featured Image credits: YONG KIM / The Philadelphia Inquirer