Mets acquire LHP Joey Lucchesi in 3-team trade

Entering this week, the Mets boasted an enviable top of the rotation but an uncertain back end. They made a significant move to change that equation on Monday, acquiring left-hander Joey Lucchesi from the Padres as part of a three-team deal, according to multiple sources.

The Mets have not confirmed the trade, which would send catching prospect Endy Rodriguez to the Pirates. From New York’s perspective, it is a one-for-one swap, though the actual transaction is much larger.

TRADE DETAILS
Mets get:
LHP Joey Lucchesi
Padres get: RHP Joe Musgrove
Pirates get: OF Hudson Head, RHP David Bednar, LHP Omar Cruz, RHP Drake Fellows from the Padres and OF Endy Rodriguez from the Mets

Lucchesi, 27, gives the Mets a young lefty capable of starting and relieving; the team intends to stretch him out in Spring Training, according to a person with knowledge of its thinking. He is under team control for four more seasons, will make close to the Major League minimum this year and has accessible Minor League options, making him a cheap, flexible roster piece for a club in need of precisely that.

The Mets also believe Lucchesi features plenty of upside, despite his issues in 2020. From 2018-19, Lucchesi went 18-19 with a 4.14 ERA, striking out 303 batters in 293 2/3 innings. He struggled in two starts for San Diego early last summer, running into some rotten luck as he allowed a .542 batting average on balls in play despite a relative lack of hard contact. The Padres subsequently sent Lucchesi to their alternate site, calling him back up for nothing more than an isolated relief appearance in September.