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MLB Insider Predicts Mets To Add 4 Out Of Top 40 Free Agents This Offseason

Find out which of the top 40 MLB free agents are predicted to sign with the Mets this offseason.

The Mets are coming off a losing season in Steve Cohen's first year as majority owner of the team.

And now, the billionaire's club is expected to be highly active in free agency this winter in order to improve their roster.

This leads us to The New York Post's Ken Davidoff, who ranked his top 40 free agents on the market this offseason and gave his predictions of where each player might wind up.

According to Davidoff, the Mets will retain three players of their own, while also looking for outfield help as well.

First, Davidoff believes the Mets will re-sign infielder Javier Báez to a seven-year, $150 million deal. 

After the Mets acquired Báez from the Chicago Cubs at the trade deadline in exchange for first-round pick Pete Crow-Armstrong, the 28-year-old showcased his unique skillset by making a major impact on his new team.

In 47 games, Báez slashed .299/.371/.515 with a .886 OPS, nine home runs and 22 RBI. And once his good friend Francisco Lindor came back from the IL in late-August, Báez shifted from shortstop to second base, which is where he will play for the foreseeable future if he decides to stick with the Mets.

Although Báez has a reputation for being a free swinger, he showed tremendous improvement in regards to his plate discipline upon joining the Mets, drawing 13 walks in 167-at bats, which is only two less than what he had in 91 games with the Cubs.

By keeping him, the Mets would have star studded middle infield duo consisting of Báez and Lindor for close to the next decade.

Beyond Báez, Davidoff sees Noah Syndergaard accepting the $18.4 million qualifying offer to remain with the Mets for another season. Syndergaard has thrown a total of two innings at the big-league level in the past two years after undergoing 2020 Tommy John surgery.

But late in the 2021 season, he made it clear that he wants to stay with the Mets, and is confident a deal will get done. He also said he would be "grateful" to receive the qualifying offer, and his dream has now come true, as the Mets extended this offer to him over the weekend.

Now, Syndergaard has until Nov. 17 to either accept or reject the QO. And given his recent injury history, all signs point to him accepting the one-year prove it deal.

An additional name who Davidoff believes the Mets will re-sign is left-hander Aaron Loup, who just produced one of the best seasons of all-time for a relief pitcher last year.

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The soon-to-be 34-year-old posted a 0.95 ERA and 57 strikeouts across 56.2 innings, which sets him up for a significant raise. As Davidoff mentioned, Loup could be in line to get a three-year deal, worth up to $27 million to return to Queens.

So what about some of the external candidates out there? Keep in mind, the Mets just lost 85 games a season ago and are in need of some outside help from a personnel standpoint.

Well, Davidoff predicts the lone outsider they bring in from his top 40 players will be outfielder Starling Marte. The 33-year-old led the league with 47 stolen bases last year, is a natural center fielder and can also play in the corner outfield spots as well. 

On the other hand, Brandon Nimmo took major strides in center last season with four-defensive runs saved, and Marte might not be able to play there much longer given his age.

The Mets could sign Marte and potentially stick him in one of the corners. And on another note, his versatility wouldn't hurt a team that was decimated by injuries in 2021.

Regardless, the Mets will likely need another outfielder after Michael Conforto rejected the qualifying offer in order to become a free agent.

With Conforto seemingly on the way out, Davidoff thinks the Mets will sign Marte to a three-year, $75 million deal this winter.

And speaking of Conforto, The Post projects him to receive a six-year, $140 million contract to join the Mets' NL East rivals in the Philadelphia Phillies.

It would also reunite him with his first major league hitting coach in Kevin Long, which could be exactly what the 28-year-old needs after a career-worst season in 2021.

While the Mets could have Syndergaard back in their rotation next year, Davidoff expects them to lose their most durable starting pitcher, Marcus Stroman.

Stroman took the $18.9 million qualifying offer last offseason, and it paid off for the right-hander, who led the big-leagues with 33 starts while posting a 3.02 ERA in the process.

Now, Stroman should be highly sought after in free agency, and The Post predicts the Houston Astros to sign him for five-years, $100 million.

The Mets must be aggressive in trying to retain Stroman this offseason, given the question marks surrounding ace Jacob deGrom, as well as Syndergaard. 

Unfortunately, keeping Stroman might not be realistic due to the stellar year he endured a season ago.