The New York Mets have found their man. Steve Cohen has long been coveting David Stearns and the Mets have landed him as their new president of baseball operations, according to multiple reports.
The Athletic’s Tim Britton explained why Stearns is such a great hire for the Mets during his appearance on the Audacy original podcast “Baseball Isn’t Boring” this week.
“One source I talked to mentioned that he’s a guy who goes head-to-head in transactions with other teams and wins at an alarming rate,” Britton said (12:45 in player above). “The Willy Adames trade with the Rays. Obviously, Drew Rasmussen went the other way. That’s a pretty good arm going back to Tampa Bay but Adames has been such a valuable piece to the Brewers since that time.
“You go back to two of the trades the Marlins made when they were giving up their outfielders. You look at what they got back for Christian Yelich from Milwaukee – which wasn’t a whole lot – and what they got back from St. Louis for Marcell Ozuna – which was Sandy Alcantara, who won the Cy Young last year, and Zac Gallen, who might win it this year.”
Back in 2018, the Brewers traded No. 13 overall prospect Lewis Brinson in a package with three other minor-leaguers for Yelich. Yelich went on to win the MVP in Milwaukee while Brinson and the rest of the Marlins’ catch fizzled out in Miami.
It’s just not trades, though. Stearns does well to make the most out of his roster.
“He maximizes his 40-man roster in a way that – we’re used to seeing the Dodgers very good at that. Tampa’s very good at that. The Mets have not been good at that for a long time,” Britton continued. “This is a team that generally you look at pieces 31 through 40 on their 40-man roster, that’s really where they fall behind a lot of their peers in the National League, and it’s what’s cost them this year that they don’t have the depth to take over for underperformance or injury from their main guys.”
The Mets’ depth was exposed this season after a few key injuries along with players underperforming. They’re hoping Stearns can rectify that moving forward, especially with the budget that comes with the New York market.
“I think that’s what the Mets look at and say he fits what we’re looking for in terms of building a sustainable winner and we’re intrigued,” Britton said. “If he’s able to unearth certain gems with the restrictions you had in Milwaukee… let’s see what happens when we give him the purse strings of Steve Cohen and what he can do in free agency.”