BRONX, NY – There’s a lot going in under the MTM Sports Wagon hood… We’ve got the MLB Trade Deadline, a potential Mets/Yanks deal, Roger Clinton rumors and NHL moves. Let’s get to it.
We’re three days away from the MLB trade deadline and the New York Yankees, whom have already made one big trade, should be looking to make a couple more. Aroldis Chapman left the Big Apple for the Windy City in a deal that sent a boatload of prospects to the Bronx. Andrew Miller and Carlos Beltran have been trade fodder for months and Brett Gardner has been mentioned as a possible addition to the Nationals or Dodgers. I say trade ’em all. Stock the farm system with prospects.
The Mets are coming into this final weekend before the trade deadline in third place in the NL East and six games behind the first place Nationals. They’re a game and a half out of the second Wild Card spot at the time of this writing and should be looking to bolster their roster. With Jeurys Familia suddenly looking squiffy, the Amazin’s may be looking for some bullpen help. Could Andrew Miller be moving to Flushing to provide some cover for the suddenly shaky Familia? The Mets could also use a big bat to bolster their lineup. Could Carlos Beltran be headed back to Queens? Could the Mets make a deal with the devil to bring a pair of Yankees in for the playoff push? Stranger things have happened.
Puck Fair… Now, since it’s almost August I think it’s time to talk hockey. July 1st is usually the busiest day on the NHL calendar – being the start of free agency. But on July 2nd, I was feeling eerily unsatisfied. While all of the big name free agents had signed lucrative contracts, the New York Rangers failed to make a splash. They signed a couple of fourth line wingers and a few defensemen that will get well acquainted with the “healthy scratch” role. But a couple of weeks ago the Blueshirtsmade a bit of a big move, shipping center Derick Brassard to Ottawa for center Mika Zibanejad.
The tale of the tape is pretty even in terms of skill. But Zibanejad is several years younger than Brassard and comes at half the price. With the extra cap room, the Blueshirts locked up a few of their restricted free agents including JT Miller and Chris Kreider. With Dylan McIlrath and Brady Skjei set to log some significant time on the blue line, the Rangers are set to make another push.
I think the early exit from the playoffs this past year will help the Broadway Blues going forward. They played the most games of any team over the past few seasons with deep runs to the Eastern Finals and one Stanley Cup Final appearance. Henrik Lundqvist will benefit from the extra rest.
I think the Rangers are in good shape going forward. They didn’t pull off a heist like the Devils did, landing Taylor Hall for a bucket of pucks and some replacement Zamboni parts, but I like the way the team is shaping up. The main ingredients are still there. While they’ll sacrifice some offense from the defensive core with the departures of Dan Boyle and Keith Yandle, I think they’ll be better defensively by giving more playing time to Skjei and McIlrath. If Zibanejad can get acclimated quickly into Alain Vigneault’s system, the Rangers will be in good shape.
That’s it for me today. Come back tomorrow for a man that allegedly slept with one of the Clintons, Ben Whitney. And please follow us on Twitter – @Different_Matt & @MeetTheMatts and like our Facebook page, Meet The Matts.