Disappointed with the Mets’ decision to trade closer David Robertson, a de facto surrender on the season by the front office, Max Scherzer wants answers.
He said Friday night that he needs to “have a conversation” with “Mets brass” about their vision for the organization, but he acknowledged that the team’s poor play “put ourselves in this position.”
With the Mets outside the playoff picture, owner Steve Cohen and general manager Billy Eppler decided to turn the team into sellers ahead of the Tuesday trade deadline. Eppler said early Friday that he is communicating regularly with teams interested in acquiring other Mets.
“I mean, look where we’re at in the standings,” Scherzer said after allowing one run in seven innings in the Mets’ 5-1 win over the Nationals. “Our record is our record. Obviously, the front office has decisions to make. Steve has decisions to make. We gotta understand what the direction of the organization is going to be.”
For weeks, Scherzer has avoided commenting publicly about the Mets’ approach to the deadline, but with the Robertson move made, that changed. He declined to specify what he seeks to talk about, calling it “everything.”
“You have to understand what they see, what they’re going to do,” he said. “I told you I wasn’t going to comment on this until Steve was going to sell. We traded Robertson. Now I need to have a conversation. I haven’t had that conversation yet, but I will.”
Eppler said: “Any conversations that I’ve had with Max or will continue to have with Max I want to keep between us.”
Scherzer’s rant began in response to a question about his reaction to the trade of Robertson, whom the Mets (49-54) sent to the Marlins on Thursday for a pair of lower-level prospects. He named Cohen three times but didn’t mention Eppler specifically.
“Disappointed, obviously,” Scherzer said. “We put ourselves in this position. We haven’t played well enough as a team. I’ve had a hand in that, for why we’re in the position that we’re at. Can’t get mad at anybody but yourself. But it stinks.”
Asked if he thinks there still is a run to be made by the Mets, Scherzer said: “Umm. I’ve probably gotta have a conversation with the front office. You’re trading our closer away. I’m sure a bunch of people are going to have to have conversations with the front office.”
Scherzer drew a distinction between this season and 2021, when he wanted to get traded by the Nationals — the team with which he spent seven seasons and won a World Series championship in 2019 — to a better club.
Notably, he mentioned that he is “not going to be a free agent.” Scherzer is owed a $43.3 million salary in 2024 but can opt out of his contract after this season. Also, because of his no-trade clause, he would have to approve any deal he is a part of.
“This isn’t like the trade for me out of Washington,” Scherzer said. “When I was with Washington, I was about to be a free agent. Our season was going south. I wanted to get traded to a playoff contender. That was the calculus for me with the Nationals.
“This time around, I’m not going to be a free agent. I have another year here. I came here, we did great things last year, won  ballgames last year. Unfortunately, this year it’s not.
“But with Steve and the rest of this organization, you can see a path forward. You can see a path to contend next year. That’s where the calculus is different.”
Does the trade of Robertson impact that?
“Gotta have a conversation with the front office,” he reiterated.
Despite the actions of that front office, some Mets players have said they aren’t giving up.
“It doesn’t matter where people go. Our job remains the same no matter who is in this locker room,” said Pete Alonso, who drove in all five runs with his 29th and 30th home runs, both with two outs. “We’re going to keep fighting. The season doesn’t end at the trade deadline. The season ends Oct. 1. That’s a huge message that we’ve been relaying to each other.”