The New York Mets are one of the most perplexing teams in baseball.

In their first 36 games of the season, the team has lost five games in a row, while also winning six games in a row. They've beaten the Los Angeles Dodgers multiple times, and they've lost to the San Francisco Giants multiple times.

Their season has been a rollercoaster far more frequently than you'd think, considering they hold a record of 18-18 (a .500 winning percentage) entering play on Friday.

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The manner in which they've achieved such mediocrity has also been surprising. Their already-thin starting rotation took a major hit during spring training, when ace Kodai Senga went down with an arm injury.

How have they responded? Their remaining pitchers have a combined 3.72 team ERA, the 12th-best in baseball. For context, last year's World Series champion, the Texas Rangers, rank 16th in ERA.

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To their credit, the Mets' offense has the 15th-best team batting average in baseball, but none of their stars deserve any credit for that performance. Star shortstop Francisco Lindor is hitting a whopping .211 this season, while star first baseman Pete Alonso is hitting .212.

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Lindor is here for the long-haul because of his contract, but Alonso's future with the franchise is not nearly as certain. He is a free agent after the 2024 season, and with super-agent Scott Boras representing him during negotiations, it will not be a smooth process.

So, the Mets have a power-hitting, clubhouse-friendly player on an expiring contract, who is going to command a small fortune in order to remain in Queens. If New York is not in contention by this year's trade deadline, and Alonso won't be helping them win a World Series, might another team want to rent his services instead?

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We ran the once-ludicrous idea of trading Pete Alonso by ESPN's Buster Olney on The Drive with Dan Bahl on Friday. Here is what he had to say on Alonso's status, as well as a number of other baseball topics, during his weekly appearance on our show:

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