Free Agent Target: Jon Gray

The Mets lost out on Steven Matz, which had some bad blood between Steve Cohen and the Mets and Matz and his agent. In the end, it’s time to move on and the Mets need to act in the quick moving starting pitching market. Billy Eppler said on MLB Network that the Mets have discussions with a lot of starting pitching and Jim Morrosi followed with a tweet that Jon Gray will likely sign soon. Mets and Jon Gray talking? I think so.

The 30 year old righty was a first round pick (3rd overall) in 2013 for the Rockies and has pitched his entire career with the organization. Gray pitched to a 4.59 ERA over 829.1 innings in his career, pitching at Coors Field half of the time.

Aces of the staff 2nd coming

In 2021, his ERA was equal to his career ERA at 4.59, but worth noting is that in the last two months, his ERA went from 3.67 to 4.59. That could be because of fatigue after the short 2020 season?

It’s also no surprise with pitchers for the Rockies, that they have to adjust to pitching in high altitude. While Gray had a better home ERA than Road ERA, you still have to adjust your way of pitching. Gray throws a 4 seam fastball, Slider, curve and change-up. His slider is his best pitch, getting minus 13 run value, while his fastball got hit hard (16 run value).

The Baseball Nerd

Overall his numbers are around league average. His XERA was 3.98 in 2021. In most years Gray his expected ERA was lower than his ERA, which could indicate a better performance outside of Coors Field. Another thing to note is that Gray his Fastball has solid velo but bad spin rates, which again, can be explained thanks to high altitude at Coors.

Baseball Savant

MLB Trade Rumors has Jon Gray signing for 4 years at 56 million dollars. If the Mets sign him, he would likely be the Matz type move for the Mets. Probably not the biggest arm to add this offseason, but a solid mid rotation arm.

I am very curious what Gray can do outside of Coors. I think his overall numbers would definitely get better and for that mid-back rotation spot, he has my preference. Upside is definitely there with Gray.

Gray is expected to sign next week, so the answer to the question if he becomes a Met, could get an answer soon.

Pitching Ninja

Photo Credit: theScore MLB

Giving Stroman a qualifying offer, is a no brainer

The World Series is almost there and that means, giving out QO’s is getting close. The Mets have one option, Marcus Stroman. And it’s an absolute no brainer to do so.

As we are all aware, Stroman decided to opt-out. Many aren’t happy about it, but how can you blame him? Even the talk with him staying on the IL, until he gets his money, is something I don’t see as wrong. It’s within the rules and honestly, wouldn’t you do it?

Also read: Hello, is it me (Jon Gray) you’re looking for?

That being said, I would be very happy to resign Stroman, espacialy on a 1 year 18.9m dollar deal. We need a number two behind Jake and Stroman is one of the two best starting pitchers coming into free agency. So he definitely fits the need.

Odds are that Stroman will decline and look for a multi year deal and I would be interrested in resign him for a longer deal. Stroman has pitched to a 3.76 ERA/3.64FIP in his career and collected 4.6 bwar in 2019. In this free agent class, that’s one of the main free agents out there. And we know how much the Mets need pitching so that’s were I would pay up.

So to conclude. It’s obvious the Mets need to make Stroman a qualifying offer. If he takes it, great. If not, you get a draft pick compensation, if he doesn’t resign. Plus, with the draft pick attached to him, other teams might be more carefull? Mets won’t lose a draft pick when they resign him, so that makes a return little more likely. Win-Win if you ask me.

Also read: Burning Questions: Session 1

Photo: Jim McIsaac

Hello, is it me (Jon Gray) you’re looking for?

Finally! A pitcher as the main addition in a trade option. Probably not the name you would like to see? But yes, I would consider Mr. Gray.

Jon Gray was a big prospect coming up thru the Rockies system, but besides a few good seasons, it has been underwhelming. Like most pitchers for the Rockies, pitching half your games at Coors Field doesn’t help. Although Gray has been almost equal in his career in home/road splits.

Reason why I would call the Rockies is that Gray is in his final contract year and coming off a terrible 2020. With 2020 being such a fluke season, with just 60 games, I rather look at his 2019 season and he was very good that year. In 150 innings he pitched to a 3.84 ERA/4.06 FIP, very solid if you ask me.

With his bad 2020 and him being in his last year of arbitration, diminishes his value. According to Baseballtradevalues.com, Gray gets a 2.4 value (equal to a trade pakage of Will Toffey and Ali Sanchez). While I don’t think that would do it, I would say, value wise, it wouldn’t cost a lot in terms of prospects and money.

Baseballtradevalues.com

Him leaving Coors Field and get away from the Big prospect, that didn’t work that well status, could help Gray. Get him back on track and increase his spin rate, would be something I would work on with him. To me this is a low risk-high reward type option, I would definitely see as a fifth starter.

Also read: Hello, is it me (Harrison Bader) you’re looking for?