Originally written on Fangraphs  |  Last updated 11/1/14
Being raised in New York Mets fan, I gradually lost my affinity for the team once Darryl Strawberry donned Dodger blue. Should the Mets acquire catcher Travis D’Arnaud and center fielder Anthony Gose from the Toronto Blue Jays, it may rekindle the love I once had for the blue and orange. Back in 1994, my family moved to Knoxville, Tennessee. A subplot of our move was to showcase my baseball talents in front of college coaches from the southeast. I headed into my senior year on the radar of the University of Tennessee Volunteers, R.A. Dickey‘s college team. Dickey, one of the best pitchers in the nation, was used liberally by head coach Rod Delmonico. The right-hander would throw a complete-game on Friday night and earn the save on Sunday afternoon.On a recruiting visit, Coach Delmonico brought me down to the locker room prior to a conference game against Arkansas if I remember correctly. None of the players acknowledged my existence other than Dickey. In a moment made for a Thursday night sitcom, Dickey walked by me and tossed his shower towel onto my shoulder as if I were the towel boy. It was a reminder of just how far away I was from being a Tennessee Volunteer. And while I didn’t end up signing with Tennessee, I continued to follow Dickey’s career loosely. From being a first round pick, to the Rangers finding Dickey was missing an elbow ligament, to his rebirth as a knuckleball pitcher, the ups and downs were extreme. For the Mets, Dickey’s transformation from minor-league free-agent to premium trade chip in the acquisition two potential franchise cornerstones must rank him as one of the most valuable Mets in team history. As for Gose and D’Arnaud, my first look at the pair was with the Lakeland Blue Claws of the South Atlantic League. And while 2009 seems like an eternity ago, I’ve yet to see a better all-around catching prospect or better tools from center field prospect since. Readers may be taken aback by my reference to the pair as franchise cornerstones, but I believe this to be true. Adding Gose solves the Mets center field dilemma for a number of years. It’s likely Gose will struggle at the plate early on, but his profile of speed and plus defense will allow for positive value while he adjusts to major-league pitching. Add to this his ability to draw walks at a league average pace and what’s left is a higher floor than prospect followers focusing on his lack of polish give him credit for. If Cameron Maybin was worth 2.7 WAR behind a .656 OPS and plus defense in 2012, Gose can be as valuable. The last above average catcher to take the field for the Mets was Paul Lo Duca in 2006. At the time, former first-round pick D’Arnaud was a junior in high school. After posting a combined .938 OPS in Double-A and Triple-A, he has nothing left to prove at the minor league level. Add to this a strong defensive profile and what I perceive as the advanced ability to manage a pitching and D’Arnaud will be the best Mets catcher since future Hall Of Famer Mike Piazza. If this deal if finalized, I commend the Blue Jays for going all in a year when the American League East should be down. However, this trade is a coup for the Mets organization. At present, they have no catcher or center field prospect to label as the “player of the future” (Brandon Nimmo projects as a corner outfielder). If the Mets fill multiple up-the-middle holes in a single deal, consider the corner turned and expect the Mets to begin working their way back up the National League East food chain.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Brad Stevens: LeBron 'looks like the MVP to me'

Le'Veon Bell tees off on Mel Kiper Jr. over Twitter

Report has McCoy headed to Bills, Rosenhaus says no deal

Murray would reportedly give Cowboys hometown discount

Report: Giants ‘considering a run’ at Ndamukong Suh

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Darnell Dockett reportedly visiting 49ers on Tuesday

David West on Brian Shaw being fired: ‘That’s bulls–t'

Hamels trade talk motivating Red Sox pitching staff

Spiller: EJ Manuel learned not to be 'buddy buddy' with everyone

Yankees fire employee over Curt Schilling's daughter tweets

Ravens settle grievance, pay Ray Rice $1.6 million

Lupul, Phaneuf, Cuthbert threaten lawsuit against TSN

Report: Adrian Peterson has trade list of five preferred teams

Murphy disagrees with Billy Bean’s homosexual 'lifestyle'

Trent Cole has ‘no respect’ for Eagles after release from team

Ronda Rousey lands free ticket to Pacquiao-Mayweather bout

Report: Celtics to pursue Love, Monroe and Gasol this summer

Trying to solve the Alex Guerrero problem

Mets to host families of slain NYPD officers at spring training

Teams that should be on NCAA Tourney upset alert

SpongeBob SquarePants: The newest NASCAR race sponsor

Winners and losers of the NHL trade deadline

Andrew Luck shaved beard, left mustache

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Spiller: EJ Manuel learned not to be 'buddy buddy' with everyone

Ten most underrated NFL free agents

Five potential landing spots for Andre Johnson

Texas-Baylor fight leads to 7 ejections

Mark Cuban will be Prez in 'Sharknado 3'

Report: Redskins interested in Suh

Report: Revis likely to hit free agency

Steve Spurrier joins Twitter

MJ makes Forbes billionaire list

Nick Young fires back at Robert Flores

Sad LeBron literally looks in mirror after loss to Rockets

MLS 2015 season preview

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.