Yoshinobu Yamamoto Aug 4, 2021; Yokohama, Japan; Team Japan pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto (17) throws against Korea in a baseball semifinal match during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Yokohama Baseball Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports

It’s never a good idea for sports teams to rely too heavily on a single player or strategy. However, the New York Mets appear to be heavily invested in securing Yoshinobu Yamamoto. While it’s hard to fault the Mets for their approach, given that they were planning to “retool” in 2024, having the backing of one of the wealthiest owners in professional sports certainly doesn’t hurt.” it certainly helps to be armed with one of the wealthiest owners in professional sports.

Steven Cohen and Mets’ President of Baseball Operations, David Stearns, have expressed interest in the highly sought-after Japanese star, Yamamoto. According to reports earlier this week, the two officials traveled to Japan to meet with Yamamoto and his mother at a French-Japanese restaurant.

Not only do the Mets want to pair Yamamoto with Kodai Senga, but they’re in desperate need of a frontline starter. And that’s why the team’s offseason hinges, according to Newsday’s Tim Healey.

“It’s gonna be interesting,” said Healey about the team’s offseason plans during an appearance on Foul Territory Friday. “Because if the Mets don’t land Yamamoto, I’m not sure they’re going to be after the other elite starting pitchers on the market: Blake Snell — two-time Cy Young Award Winner; Jordan Montgomery, had a great year last year, especially in the playoffs. Those guys are going to get big deals. I’m just not sure the Mets are gonna be big players for them.

“So, a lot of their hopes ride on Yamamoto. He’s only 25 years old, so he fits their timeline perfectly; a little bit of a reset in 2024 before really trying to win in ’25 and ’26 and beyond. So, a lot of the Mets offseason plan rides on Yamamoto.”

Essentially, the Mets aren’t going to spend money to spend it. If they lose out on Yamamoto to the New York Yankees, they may have to pivot to an entirely different market of pitchers, as it sure sounds like the team won’t be in on the Snells and Montgomerys of the word; that’s at least as of now.

Yamamoto has been a beast in Japan, winning three straight Sawamura Awards, which is Japan’s equivalent to the Cy Young Award. The 25-year-old pitcher has put up video-game-like numbers during that span, highlighted by a 1.44 ERA.

[Foul Territory]

About Sam Neumann

Since the beginning of 2023, Sam has been a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. A 2021 graduate of Temple University, Sam is a Charlotte native, who currently calls Greenville, South Carolina his home. He also has a love/hate relationship with the New York Mets and Jets.