Sep 29, 2018; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners relief pitcher Edwin Diaz (39) throws against the Texas Rangers during the ninth inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Several reports emerged on Thursday about the New York Mets and Seattle Mariners being in serious discussions on a blockbuster trade. The reports have Edwin Diaz and Robinson Cano going to the Mets, and Anthony Swarzak, Jay Bruce, and multiple prospects going to the Mariners.

And it appears the trade will indeed happen.

Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports reports that the trade “is expected to be completed by Friday,” with “at least two prospects” going to Seattle in the deal.

MLB.Com’s Anthony DiComo adds that the Mets “have begun informing players in the deal,” and no other Mariners are involved in it.

The Mets are doing this to try to win games in 2019. The Mariners are doing this to save money and enter a full-on rebuild.

Cano, 36, has five years and $120 million remaining on his contract. He has a no-trade clause, but Fancred’s Jon Heyman doesn’t think Cano — a former Yankee — will hesitate to waive the clause and allow a trade to New York.

The prize of the deal is Diaz, who’s just 24 and is under team control (likely “cheaply”) for four more years. Diaz is coming off a ridiculous 2018 season in which he had 57 saves in 61 attempts, with 124 strikeouts in 73 1/3 innings (15.22 K/9), a 1.96 ERA, and 1.61 FIP. FanGraphs has Diaz at 3.5 WAR in 2018, behind only Blake Treinen (3.6) among MLB relievers.

Bruce and Swarzak are veteran players that neither team likely wants, but they go to Seattle to offset some salary in the trade. The Mariners are attaching Diaz to get the Mets to take on — at least a lot of — Cano’s salary, and to receive top prospects. Those prospects may include two former first round picks in outfielder Jarred Kelenic and right-handed pitcher Justin Dunn.

So, we know why the Mariners are doing it, even if there’s plenty of reason to debate if it’s the right move. Like, Diaz has a ton of value on his own, and it’s possible — without knowing the full-on prospect details of this trade — that he could’ve gotten Seattle a better haul at some point.

But their side of the deal is much less interesting than New York’s side of the deal. And it would be the first significant move under new general manager and former agent, Brodie Van Wagenen.

Here’s the thing with the Mets: they’re probably still not a playoff team (even if they make another substantial move or two this offseason). And this is the kind of trade you should only make as a team with realistic title chances.

Diaz is an elite closer, but who cares about saves on a fourth-place team (which is where the Mets would be projected to be right now behind the Braves, Phillies, and Nationals in the NL East)?

Cano had an .845 OPS and 136 wRC+ in 2018, and probably has a couple more good offensive seasons in him, but he’s old and his defense isn’t what it used to be either. It’s possible his offense drops off a ton immediately because this is usually what happens when players get into their late 30s.

Sure, maybe deGrom repeats his 2018 NL Cy Young season, maybe Noah Syndergaard stays healthy for a full season and dominates, etc. You can see the path to the Mets being a contender again, and it’s understandable that they would like to try to take one more shot in the deGrom and Syndergaard window.

But you could also argue the Mets would be better off rebuilding themselves, or at least not making trades like this.

About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

He can be followed on Twitter at @Matt2Clapp (also @TheBlogfines for Cubs/MLB tweets and @DaBearNecess for Bears/NFL tweets), and can be reached by email at

2 thoughts on “The Mets and Mariners are on the verge of a weird blockbuster trade

  1. Matt,

    Virtually wrote the same in another post. Absolutely agree!!! Does the Mets’ FO actually believe that they have a shot at the playoffs this year? They still have the weakest lineup in the NL East except for the Marlins. So why the heck do you make a closer the centerpiece of a deal when you can’t hit your way out of a paper bag (and still lack a catcher and 3rd baseman): Diaz will not get that many save opportunities. And now you have Cano’s salary as an albatross for the next four years!

    A message to the Mets FO:

  2. Just another case of the Mets being the Mets. As a Mets fan I learned very early that you have to laugh to keep from crying.

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