The New York Mets have reportedly had preliminary trade discussions with the Detroit Tigers about second baseman Ian Kinsler. Kinsler is a four-time all-star, last appearing in the all-star game in 2014. With a need at second base, is Ian Kinsler a good player for GM Sandy Alderson to target this offseason?
Ian Kinsler was once a very good baseball player, however at 35 years old he has begun to regress. His batting average dropped from .288 to .236 compared to the previous season, the worst of his career. Kinsler did still manage to hit for 22 home runs, and 50 over the last two years. His power fluctuates a lot season to season, and those numbers would likely decline next year at 36 years old and in Citi Field. He did also steal 14 bases and have his highest walk percentage since 2011 last year as well. Off the field, Kinsler is known to be an outspoken player, who is sometimes surrounded in controversy for things he says to umpires and fans. If his play was good enough, that would be okay, however I question bringing a player like that to New York on the downside of his career. Additionally, a big part of why Detroit is trying to trade him is because of is $11 million contact. With the Mets only looking to add 30-40 million in salary, they would likely try to get Detroit to eat some of the contract.
What would it take?
There are three different route this trade could go if it were to get done:
- The first would be the Mets sending a low to mid-level prospect to Detroit for Kinsler. Detroit would be looking for a player with upside but isn’t a sure thing. It makes sense for Detroit because they would add an upside prospect to their system, and cut Kinsler’s salary. For the Mets, they wouldn’t be giving up much, and would be getting their starting second baseman, and likely would slide Astrubal Cabrera over to third base.
- The second type of trade that could happen would be the Mets sending a good, upper-level prospect to Detroit for Kinsler with Detroit eating salary. With this type of trade, Detroit takes on some of Kinsler’s $11 million contract in order to get a better prospect. The Mets would be giving up a better prospect, one who is likely close to the majors, in order to save money.
- The third would be a swap of major league players, with Juan Lagares likely being the only player who fits the mold. This is the least likely of the options, as the Mets like Lagares and he is a valuable piece to this team.
Should the Mets do it?
Personally, I do not think the Mets should trade for Kinsler. He is an aging player, on the backside of his career, and makes too much money. The Mets have a small budget, and they should not invest this much money into a player like Kinsler. If Detroit would eat money on his deal for a low-level prospect, I would be more willing to do this deal, however moving a young prospect like Peter Alonso for Kinsler doesn’t feel worth it. There are better options available on the trade market like the Marlins’ Dee Gordon and the Indians’ Jason Kipnis. Via free agency there are also better options, like former Met Neil Walker and former Yankee Eduardo Nunez, who can also play third base.
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