Mariners Commerce Trevor Gott, Chris Flexen To Mets; Mets Designate Flexen For Task

The Mets added to their bullpen Monday afternoon, buying Trevor Gott from the Mariners. New York additionally acquired Chris Flexen, whom they instantly designated for project. Seattle receives lefty reliever Zach Muckenhirn, whom New York had designated for project earlier in the present day. The Mets transferred righty Edwin Uceta to the 60-day injured record to clear roster area for Gott.

New York is taking over a good amount of cash to plug Gott into the bullpen. They’re reportedly assuming the rest of the contracts for each Flexen, whom Seattle had designated for project final week, and Gott. That’s about $3.9MM for Flexen and about $587K for Gott.

Initially a Mets draftee again in 2012, Flexen discovered success abroad pitching within the Korea Baseball Group and returned to North American ball on a two-year take care of the Mariners. He made good on Seattle’s modest funding, pitching to a pointy 3.66 ERA in 317 1/3 innings over the primary two seasons of the contract. Flexen labored primarily as a starter — although he was dropped to the ’pen final yr after the Mariners’ acquisition of Luis Castillo — and shouldered a heavy sufficient workload that he triggered an $8MM vesting possibility for the present season.

Whereas Flexen didn’t have a rotation spot heading into the season, he was locked in as a protracted reliever and sixth starter — the primary man up within the occasion of a rotation damage. The Mariners incurred such an damage early within the season when Robbie Ray went down with an arm damage that ultimately resulted in Tommy John surgical procedure. Flexen, nevertheless, scuffled within the rotation when trying to fill that void and hasn’t generated good leads to the bullpen both. He’s appeared in 17 video games for the Mariners and logged an unsightly 7.71 ERA over the course of 42 innings.

Flexen’s 3.66 ERA from 2021-22 by no means fairly lined up together with his pedestrian strikeout price (simply north of 16%), however a downturn of this magnitude nonetheless couldn’t have been anticipated. He’s been terribly homer-prone this yr (2.36 per 9 innings) however has additionally been stricken by a .350 common on balls in play.

The Mets’ willingness to tackle the rest of his wage will successfully enable them to buy the veteran Gott within the midst of a stable yr with Seattle. The 30-year-old Gott has to date posted a pedestrian 4.03 ERA however with a lot stronger secondary marks: 24.8% strikeout price, 6.2% stroll price, 0.62 HR/9, 42.5% ground-ball price, 3.01 FIP, 3.47 SIERA. He’ll give the Mets an skilled center reduction possibility to assist bridge the hole to veterans David Robertson and Adam Ottavino.

Gott can also be nonetheless controllable by means of the 2024 season by way of arbitration. If he pitches nicely for the rest of the season, he’d be owed a elevate on this yr’s $1.2MM wage however would nonetheless be extremely inexpensive — particularly for a high-payroll membership just like the Mets.

The entire gambit underscores Mets proprietor Steve Cohen’s willingness to spend. Not solely are the Mets taking over about $4.5MM in complete wage, they’ll additionally pay a 90% tax given their standing as luxurious tax payors who’re within the newly created fourth tier of penalization. It boils all the way down to a roughly $8.55MM in further spending — a reasonably beautiful quantity to accumulate a journeyman reliever.

It’s additionally certainly a irritating sequence of occasions for Flexen. He’s already spent every week in DFA limbo questioning the place he’ll land, and he’ll now restart that course of. The Mets might shortly place him on waivers somewhat than taking the utmost 5 days to take action, nevertheless it’s hardly a direct journey by means of the DFA course of.

MLBTR confirmed with a supply final week that Flexen can reject an outright project and retain his wage, even supposing he doesn’t have 5 years of Main League service time. That’s attributable to the character of the contract he signed when coming back from the KBO, which additionally stipulates that he can’t be despatched to the minors with out his consent and that he would grow to be a free agent on the deal’s conclusion regardless of being shy of six years of MLB service.

Due to that contract, Flexen will grow to be a free agent if the Mets aren’t capable of finding a commerce associate of their very own. Barring a commerce, Flexen will hit waivers and certainly clear, as different golf equipment aren’t going to wish to be on the hook for that $3.9MM or so in wage. As soon as he clears, a brand new staff would have the ability to signal him and solely owe Flexen the prorated league minimal for any time spent on the MLB roster. The Mets would stay on the hook for the remainder of that wage.

As for the Mariners, they’ll save greater than $4.5MM on that pair of relievers and likewise add an optionable lefty within the 28-year-old Muckenhirn. The southpaw signed a minor league take care of the Mets over the winter and made his large league debut earlier this season. He’s tallied six innings within the Majors, yielding 4 runs on 11 hits and a pair of walks with three strikeouts.

Muckenhirn’s work in Triple-A has produced much better outcomes. He boasts a sensational 0.88 ERA in 30 2/3 frames, though his 15.7% strikeout price and 10.7% stroll price don’t precisely help that minuscule quantity. Muckenhirn has induced grounders at a hearty 50% clip, however he’s additionally benefited from a .230 common on balls in play and a mammoth 95.2% strand price in Triple-A to this point. He’ll give the Mariners a 3rd left-handed bullpen possibility on the 40-man roster, becoming a member of Tayler Saucedo and Gabe Speier in that regard.

Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic first reported the Mets had been buying Flexen and Gott for Muckenhirn. Andy Martino of SNY was first to report the Mets deliberate to designate Flexen for project. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported the Mets had been assuming the rest of Flexen’s and Gott’s offers.