Colorado Rockies: They may be able to get rid of some bad contracts in a trade for Syndergaard

CHICAGO, IL - AUGUST 27: Noah Syndergaard #34 of the New York Mets delivers the ball against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 27, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The Cubs defeated the Mets 7-4. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - AUGUST 27: Noah Syndergaard #34 of the New York Mets delivers the ball against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 27, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The Cubs defeated the Mets 7-4. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported on Twitter recently that the Colorado Rockies may be a suitor for New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard. Thomas Harding on speculated on some people that the Rockies could try to send to the Mets in this article from Wednesday but not particularly on the prospects. We joined in the speculation as well a few days ago as our own Tyson Crocker also examined some potential packages to get Syndergaard but the Rockies could, perhaps, unload some of their bad contracts while still getting Syndergaard…but they may have to pay in another way.

There is no question that the Rockies have more than their fair share of bad contracts (at least based on some player’s 2018 seasons). They include Ian Desmond, Bryan Shaw, Jake McGee, and Mike Dunn.

Combined, the four of them will be awarded at least $87.5 million (including buyouts but it could be more depending if the Rockies exercise their team options, which they almost certainly will not) over the next two to four seasons.

Obviously, the Rockies wold not be able to unload all four players and all of their contracts for Syndergaard but, perhaps, as Harding speculated in his article, the Rockies could get rid of two of them.

The two that he speculated that could be included in a deal are Ian Desmond and Bryan Shaw.

Desmond, who is owed the most of the four players with bad contracts as he is owed $38 million between 2019 and 2021 plus at least $2 million in 2022 for a buyout of the contract, would provide the Mets with a versatile bat either off the bench or everyday. Given the Mets current depth chart, which mainly has one person at each position, that is some depth they could really use.

It should also be noted that Ian Desmond’s agency is CAA Sports and his specific agent was Brodie Van Wagenen, who is, coincidentally, the Mets new GM.

For Shaw, he is owed $19.5 million over the next two seasons including the buyout for $2 million for the 2021 season. Harding mentions Shaw as a potential piece in the deal because of his relationship with Mets manager, Mickey Callaway. Callaway is entering his second season as Mets manager but from 2013 through 2017, he was the pitching coach of the Cleveland Indians.

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For all of those seasons, Shaw was in the Indians bullpen, where he the AL in appearances 3 times and pitched to a 3.11 ERA. For comparison, his ERA was nearly doubled that in 2018 as his ERA was 5.93 in 60 appearances.

With being at a lower altitude and with his former pitching coach that he was successful under, Shaw could show that he could rebound for the Metropolitans.

The Rockies dilemma, though, is that they would also have to include some major league ready talent in a deal for Syndergaard, especially if the Mets were to assume all or the vast majority of Desmond’s and Shaw’s contracts.

Harding doesn’t mention anybody in particular but he does say that the Mets “are likely to demand at least one more young impact player whose contract is under club control, and maybe even a prospect or two to sweeten the deal.” In my mind, that means two to three young, major league ready (or very close to major league ready) players. The players that would fit that bill include Brendan Rodgers, Peter Lambert, Ryan McMahon, Garrett Hampson, Raimel Tapia, Tom Murphy, Jeff Hoffman, and Josh Fuentes.

As Patrick Saunders noted, however, Rodgers would be “untouchable” so the Rockies would have to give up more quantity than quality. I think that at least one of McMahon or Hampson would have to be in the deal and either one or two the the others, depending on if both McMahon and Hampson were in the deal and if Lambert was in the deal.

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But it should definitely be something for them to consider. If the Rockies can pull off a trade for Syndergaard that a) keep Brendan Rodgers with the Rockies; b) gets rid of some of the bad contracts; and c) keep one of McMahon and Hampson, with the priorities being in that order, it should be something that they should pull the trigger on.