Pending R.A. Dickey‘s coming to an agreement on a contract extension with Toronto, the reigning NL Cy Young Award winner is on his way from the Mets to the Blue Jays in exchange top catching prospect Travis d’Arnaud, top pitching prospect Noah Syndergaard in what will end up a seven player deal. Dickey was asking the Mets for a two-year, $26 million deal, but could seek slightly more from Toronto in a deal that must be reached by 2 p.m. Tuesday.
But before Dickey leaves the Mets are doing what one member of Red Sox Nation said Boston is so very good at namely dragging a departing player’s name through the mud. As Tyler Kepner so astutely wrote in today’s New York Times:
Dickey is unfailingly polite and respectful, the way we wish all players would be. His compelling back story, and willingness to share it, broadened the Mets’ appeal. He has peeled off painful wounds from his past in an effort to help others deal with child sexual abuse, appearing on the cover of the latest Sports Illustrated in an article about it. Yet this is the man the Mets chose to malign.
Trading him might make sense, if the prospects help the Mets start winning again, someday. Smearing him in the process was utterly classless. For all he gave the Mets, on the field and off, Dickey deserved better.
According to Baseball America, D’Arnaud, 23, and Syndergaard, 20, are the Jays’ numbers 1 and 3 prospects. D’Arnaud is the one who is major league ready in spite of having to overcome a number of injuries: back trouble in 2010, two concussions in 2011, and a torn posterior cruciate ligament last season. D’Arnaud hit .333 with 16 homers and 52 RBI in 303 at bats for Las Vegas in the hitting friendly Pacific Coast League. There were 72 players with at least 143 at bats in the PCL last season who hit over .300, but D’Arnaud’s .595 slugging was the 10th best in the league. Syndergaard was 8-5 with a 2.60 ERA for Single A Lansing with 122 strikeouts in 103.2 innings in 2012.
Here are the nine lowest batting averages (min. 800 at bats) 2011-12
The Jays are also wisely picking up Josh Thole, Dickey’s primary battery mate in 2012, to help catch Dickey’s knuckleball.
Here are Dickey’s 2012 numbers throwing to Thole
R.A. Dickey could prove to be another key component in the Jays drive to win the AL East, the big question will be whether Dickey proves to be a 38-year old pitcher or a Cy Young Award winning pitcher.
Over the last three seasons, there have been 10 pitchers (min. 600 IP) with below 3.00 ERA