Cincinnati Reds ace Trevor Bauer is going to be the most highly-touted starting pitcher available on the free-agent market this winter after putting together a Cy Young Award-worthy campaign this season.
Perfect timing, too, considering it’s about to yield him a big-time payday and both the New York Mets and Yankees could use an additional top-end starting pitcher looking ahead toward 2021.
However, the outspoken hurler has created a whirlwind of speculation just from what is coming out of his own camp.
After originally stating that he would only take a one-year deal, his agent, Rachel Luba, took to Twitter saying that “we are open to and will be considering ALL types of deals,” when free agency begins in November.
Should he take a multi-year deal, sources told SNY’s John Harper that the 29-year-old righty’s next contract could be similar to that of Washington Nationals ace Stephen Strasburg, who inked a seven-year, $245 million pact prior to the 2019 season.
It’s a big-time deal for a pitcher who hasn’t necessarily spent much time on the elite stage when it comes to starters in Major League Baseball.
Bauer’s 1.73 ERA and 0.795 WHIP in the truncated 2020 season with Cincinnati came just one year after he combined to post a 4.48 ERA with the Cleveland Indians and Reds in 2019.
There also comes the prospect of Bauer’s outspokenness creating waves in a big market like New York, which could see the star wear out his welcome quickly in the Big Apple.
That already has some around the New York City baseball scene sounding off about the idea of Bauer getting such a big payday.
A source with knowledge of Steve Cohen’s situation and impending takeover of the Mets bristled to amNewYork Metro upon the idea of a potential $245 million deal for Bauer.
“For a headache?” he asked about the Mets doling out such a deal. “Forget that.”
That doesn’t reflect what the front office or soon-to-be owner Cohen thinks, but it does provide some insight.
The Mets are expected to be in the market for a starting pitcher this offseason given the uncertainties in the rotation behind Jacob deGrom.
Noah Syndergaard will not be ready to return from Tommy John surgery until a few months into the 2021 season, at the earliest, while Marcus Stroman will test the free-agent market after opting out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns.
The bottom of the Mets’ rotation provided little to no consistency as Steven Matz, Michael Wacha, and Rick Porcello struggled. However, rookie left-hander David Peterson showed signs of promise in his debut campaign.