Let’s be realistic, half a season worth of Marlon Byrd is not going cause a contending team to part with a top prospect. Buster Olney pretty much hit the nail on the head with this tweet last week:
Yes, NYM could trade Marlon Byrd. But nobody is going to give them anything close to a significant piece for him–a rental w/a .313 OBP.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) July 14, 2013
If Byrd’s performance to date hasn’t caused other teams to view him as a ‘difference maker’, then it makes sense that the Mets front office appears unmotivated to move their 35-year-old outfielder. As Jorge Castillo of the Star Ledger wrote:
The Mets say they will need to be overwhelmed with an offer to move the right fielder.
“A guy like Marlon, he’s not costing us a lot of money, there’s the question then of what kind of talent we might be able to get back,” Alderson said. “It’s still very important for us to try to be competitive because, regardless of what happens, this has been about changing perception and about what people can anticipate going into the future.”
Alderson is right, plain and simple. The goal of any trade should be to help the club in the short or long term and trading a player that has been one of your more consistent weapons on offense throughout the year for a low level prospect does not fall into either category. Byrd is an inexpensive starter in New York’s outfield, so moving him also does nothing to help the team from a financial standpoint. If trade interest remains as low in the coming days as it has been leading up to this point and there’s simply not enough interest to drive his price tag up, then there’s no reason to dump him and force fans to endure an even more punchless offense.
Regarding the trade deadline, a team official says the Mets "haven't had any action yet," on Byrd or Parnell.
— Mike Puma (@NYPost_Mets) July 18, 2013
Let’s face it, right now the New York Mets are a better team with Marlon Byrd and there’s something to be said for winning games in the second half, even if the playoffs appear out of reach. Some fans pay good money for their tickets, for their concessions at the game, for their beverages throughout the day. They sweat through 9 innings of baseball in the Summer heat and sometimes the only thing that makes it all worth it is a Mets win.
Photo by Michael G. Baron
Those wins may be hard to come by these days in Queens, but Marlon Byrd has done his part to help the cause. If the team can get someone who they believe will do the same down the road, then moving their current team leader in home runs is understandable, but absent of that scenario, holding onto Marlon Byrd makes sense.