Just before the MLB trade deadline clock struck its proverbial midnight toll at 6 p.m. ET on Wednesday, the Mets got some bullpen help that they had been desperate for, acquiring right-hander Mychal Givens from the Chicago Cubs.
The Mets are sending 22-year-old right-handed reliever Saúl González, currently playing in Low-A ball, to the Cubs in exchange for the 32-year-old.
In what was his debut season with the Cubs, Givens posted a 2.66 ERA with a 1.254 WHIP and 51 strikeouts in 40.2 innings.
He has plenty of familiarity with Mets manager Buck Showalter, as the two were together with the Baltimore Orioles from 2015-2018. During that time, Givens posted a 3.12 ERA and a 1.131 WHIP in one of the more successful stretches of his career.
In recent weeks, he had been performing as the Cubs’ eighth-inning man, which certainly gives the Mets another option to consider for late-inning assignments ahead of All-Star closer Edwin Diaz.
As it stood prior to the deadline, New York was down to two dependable relievers outside of Diaz in Adam Ottavino and Seth Lugo while awaiting the return of Trevor May, who has been out for nearly three months with a triceps injury.
The need to bolster the backend of the bullpen was at the top of general manager Billy Eppler’s list, but it does not fulfill the void that is the Mets’ lack of a go-to left-handed relief option.
Joely Rodriguez, acquired from the Yankees in the trade that sent Miguel Castro to the Bronx, has a 5.72 ERA over 35 appearances this season.