Report: Mets wouldn't include McNeil in potential Betts trade
Lizzy Barrett / Major League Baseball / Getty

The New York Mets made an effort to acquire former MVP Mookie Betts from the Boston Red Sox this offseason, but their offers fell short of the one Boston ultimately accepted from the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Mets were offering one of Brandon Nimmo or J.D. Davis along with one of their top shortstop prospects - either Andres Gimenez or Ronny Mauricio - in exchange for Betts, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.

However, New York was reportedly unwilling to include versatile hitter Jeff McNeil. Betts is scheduled to hit free agency next offseason, but the 28-year-old McNeil is under club control for five more years. Over 133 games in 2019, McNeil posted a .916 OPS while playing outfield, second base, and third base.

Furthermore, to make a Betts deal work, the Mets would likely have needed to include either Jed Lowrie or Yoenis Cespedes to counteract the salary they'd be acquiring, Sherman added. Lowrie is owed $10 million for 2020, while Cespedes' restructured deal guarantees him $6 million plus incentives. Boston was looking to get under the luxury-tax threshold, which would have been very difficult if Lowrie or Cespedes was included.

The Red Sox wound up trading Betts to the Dodgers along with high-priced veteran pitcher David Price and cash for a package that included outfielder Alex Verdugo and shortstop prospect Jeter Downs.

Nimmo's hit .254/.387/.440 across his first four MLB seasons. Last year, the 26-year-old authored a .783 OPS with eight home runs and three steals over 69 games. He entered arbitration this winter and will be eligible for free agency following the 2022 season.

Davis was acquired from the Houston Astros via trade last winter and has yet to qualify for arbitration. The 26-year-old became a full-time player for the first time in 2019 and broke out with a .307/.369/.527 slash line and 22 homers.

Mauricio, 18, is currently listed as the top prospect in the Mets' system and ranks 62nd overall in baseball, according to MLB Pipeline. Gimenez, 21, ranks 84th.

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Report: Mets wouldn't include McNeil in potential Betts trade
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