So, I'm reading Metsblog.com as I do every morning, and I see that the Mets are close to a deal for Livan Hernandez. At that very moment, I'm thinking to myself: 'after checking the site yesterday and finding out that the Mets may include Ryan Church in a deal for Johan Santana, things may begin to look good for the Mets'. So I keep reading, and I discover that Aaron Heilman may be added to the trade as well, and then I begin to think: 'The Mets are really on to something here'. Then I check out mlbtraderumors.com to see how credible the report is (not that Matt Cerrone and his guys at Metsblog aren't reliable...They're actually my first source for Mets news) and I find that they're repoting the same thing. So, the wheels begin to turn a bit more in my head and finally I'm thinking: 'The Mets are going to make a deal for Johan Santana!'.
This is what I think may be going on with the Mets front office and I like it:
1) Sign Livan Hernandez. He wants to play in Queens beside his brother, El Duque. This is not a bad move considering he is only 32, he has pitched nearly 200 innings or more in the last couple of seasons, and would replace the effort the Mets got from Tom Glavine in 2007. This deal however wouldn't preclude a trade for Santana though because,
2) The Mets should move El Duque or Mike Pelfrey to the Bullpen. If Aaron Heilman is included in a deal for Santana, there would be a conspicuous hole in the middle relief. Many people have said Mike Pelfrey may be best suited for this role so that he can gain more confidence and develop further. El Duque on the other hand, has bullpen experience and such a move may prove to be valuable as far as his durability is concerned. At this point, I'm becoming more optimistic about a deal with the Twins. I you had asked me yesterday around noon, I would have said 'no way!' Nevertheless, by making these moves, the Mets so far would have added their ace and solved and further strengthened their bullpen/rotation issues. Not too shabby, huh?
3) Include Fernando Martinez in this deal! We cannot afford to give up either he or Carlos Gomez, but with Gomez being closer to 'The Show' than Martinez, he would be needed to replace Ryan Church in right field this season. F-Mart isn't due to crack the majors until 2009 or '10, so a supplementary move would be to re-sign Shawn Green for one year to platoon with Gomez. Although Green doesn't have the 'pop' of old, he was adequate last season and to me is a better alternative than Brad Wilkerson.
4) Also include one of Kevin Mulvey or Philip Humber with Deolis Guerra. I'd hate to see Guerra become as dominant as he's projected to be with another club, but I could stomach it if he's included with one of Mulvey or Humber. The Mets will need to keep at least one of them around with Pedro Martinez, El Duque and Oliver Perez all coming off the books after this season.
If this Johan saga ends with him coming to Flushing, I'd love to see the makeup of the lineup and rotation. If it were done, I could see it looking like this:
1) Johan Santana
2) Pedro Martinez
3) John Maine
4) Livan Hernandez
5) Mike Pelfrey
The makeup of this team is not bad at all. In fact, I think they would have a pretty good time rolling through the National League; the only conerns I do have however, are what happens for 2009 when Moises Alou and Carlos Delgado are done? Mark Teixeira is an option, but he may be staying put in Atlanta (he just bought a home there); and I gather finding serviceable outfielders is not too big a deal. Perhaps this may work out. Just perhaps.