This offseason the Milwaukee Brewers unfortunately had to part ways with starting pitcher Brandon Woodruff. The 30 year old underwent shoulder surgery, may miss the entire 2024 season, and was entering his final year of team control. This trio of reasons led to him being non-tendered and becoming a free agent.
Prior to the mid-November non-tender deadline the Brewers likely explored other options such as trading him or signing him to a two year extension. A trade would have at least guaranteed Milwaukee some players in return whereas a two year contract extension would have provided him one year to focus on rehab with the security of knowing where he will pitch in 2025.
Sadly the end result was him being let go the Brewers. His name has remained off of the hot stove for most of this winter, but recently a MLB Insider reported that the New York Mets were considering him. If this were to occur it would reunite him with executive David Stearns.
Ex-Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher Brandon Woodruff is being considered by the New York Mets.
Joel Sherman recently wrote that the Mets were looking to be active in the starting pitching market. He listed a few players that New York was interested in including Hyun Jin Ryu, Sean Manaea, Shota Imanaga, Dylan Cease, and Brandon Woodruff.
Given David Stearns' history with Woodruff it is not surprising that the two have been linked in free agency rumors. The familiarity between the two could play an important factor. Already this offseason Stearns has reunited with Adrian Houser, Tyrone Taylor, Cam Robinson, Jorge Lopez, Cooper Hummel, Tyler Heineman, and Victor Castaneda,
Looking at this further, the Mets are currently believed to be going through a transition year in 2024 with a plan of competing in the near future. Adding Woodruff to a two year deal would match with their competitive timeline. Additionally he has postseason experience and a track record of success when pitching in meaningful games.
When healthy Woodruff can be a Cy Young contender. He finished fifth in voting in 2018, has been to two All-Star games, and has a career ERA of 3.10 across 680 innings pitched. In a typical season he comes at hitters with a bulldog mentality and he frequently saves bullpens by working deep into games.
Given the financial resources that David Stearns has at his disposal in New York it would not be out of the question to see the Mets sign him to a two year contract. The Brewers remain open to a reunion, but it'll be difficult to compete financially with Stearns and the Mets.