Today: 21.08.2018
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20.08.2018

Mets own complete control of Jacob deGrom’s destiny.

WASHINGTON — Jacob deGrom elevated himself from an already outstanding starter to something more than that this year by commanding inner-half fastballs better and throwing his slider and changeup more frequently and with greater precision. He mentioned “control” of any pitch at any time for showing up as an All-Star with a major league best...
Time: 22:56     Date: 16.07.2018
Last US Sport News: Mets own complete control of Jacob deGrom’s destiny. NY Post 24 - US News

He mentioned “control” of any pitch at any time for showing up as an All-Star with a major league best 1.68 ERA.

Yet he lacks control over of what is most important to him — his baseball life. So, to that end, deGrom’s representative, Brodie Van Wagenen, tried to gain clarity and, perhaps, leverage by using the mega-scrutinized All-Star Monday proceedings to declare the Mets should make a strong statement with his client by either inking him to an extension and building around him or trading him and reconstructing with what they get in return.

“If that [signing deGrom long term] is not the direction, it would only make sense for them to explore opportunities with his peak in the marketplace,” Van Wagenen said.

Those are the two choices that best fit deGrom. Yet, current signs are the Mets will pick Door No. 3. Behind that is holding deGrom through this trade deadline and leaving the question of an extension for the next GM, a person who likely is not currently employed by the team.

But the Wilpons also are hesitant to go where it will be necessary to buy out the final two years deGrom has before free agency and then maybe three or four more. Part of that is deGrom already is 30 and has had Tommy John surgery and the Mets — perhaps more than any other club — have endured just how fragile and volatile starting pitching can be these last few years. However, there also is that the Mets have signed four $100 million contracts in their history — Carlos Beltran, Johan Santana, David Wright and Yoenis Cespedes — and none have worked as ownership had hoped. And retaining deGrom for the long term is going to mean another investment of $100 million-plus.

The Mets can do nothing and retain deGrom, Syndergaard and Matz through at least 2020 and hope they stay healthy enough to thrust the Mets back toward contention. That would mean the Mets almost certainly are missing the best window there ever is going to be to maximize deGrom in a trade.

Like deGrom, Toronto’s J.A. Happ is at the All-Star Game. He is all but certain to be traded in the next two weeks and just might be the best starter moved. But not all All-Stars are created equal. Happ, a No. 3-ish starter in his walk year, will bring the Blue Jays a nice return.

DeGrom is among the greatest starters in the world, plus he would be available to an acquiring team for three pennant races. This is the difference between Kevin Durant being available for three years or Rudy Gay for one. If executed well, the Mets could make a mammoth improvement to their 25- and 40-man rosters — and their future.

DeGrom will still have value in the offseason, just not as much.

But you also understand why deGrom — through Van Wagenen — wants clarity. If he is not going to get paid long term, he might as well go to a winning environment now. Of course, the best option is to be paid now and remove the uncertainty, especially at a time when major league teams have become more leery of handing out huge deals to players already in their thirties. DeGrom would not be a free agent until finishing his age-32 season.

DeGrom was teammates with Matt Harvey, so he saw how in a matter of a few years Harvey went from projecting to maybe a $200 million free agent to one who might have to battle to get a tenth of that this coming offseason.

So it is understandable why he wants the sure money now or, at worst, a good team to play for the rest of this year. Unfortunately for deGrom, as opposed to when he has the ball in his hand on the mound, he has no control over the matter.

Sport

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Opinion

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Living

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Business

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Metro

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Sport

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