Sorting things out ….

BAY: Still on Mets' radar, but they'd better hurry.

BAY: Still on Mets' radar, but they'd better hurry.

The Mets are dealing with the fall out from the bombshell dealings of yesterday.

I don’t know if stonewalling Jason Bay was a ruse by the Red Sox to get John Lackey. I didn’t think they were going to get him anyway, and it has nothing to do with them misreading the pitching market.

Even so, they should be more aggressive in their pursuit for him if he’s their target. Let’s face it, he has to be because they aren’t going to give Matt Holliday what the Cardinals are reportedly willing to do.

If the Mets think Bay will “fall back” to them like Johan Santana did, they could be mistaken. The first impression, and I had it yesterday, was Seattle wouldn’t go for him because they’ll need the money for Cliff Lee.

Perhaps that was premature.

Wouldn’t Seattle be a little more enticing to Lee if there was power in that line-up? Maybe, with Lee, the Mariners see an opening to win this year and will still pursue Bay. Truth is, the Mariners haven’t said Bay is no longer an option.

And, what about the Angels? With Lackey gone and Halladay no longer an option, they have to be looking to do something. Bay was on their radar before. He might still be on it unless the Angels are bent on those middle-tier arms the Mets have been talking about. Truth is, for what they saved in Lackey, they might be able to swing both Bay and a pitcher. And, Bay has to be a better option than Hideki Matsui.

Another option for the Bay camp has to be the Yankees. With what Johnny Damon is asking (he must be joking thinking he’ll get $39 million over three years) and Matsui doing some heavy necking with the Angels, left field is looking open in the Bronx. Plus, isn’t one-upping the Red Sox something the Yankees live to do?

I’m concerned with the Mets’ lack of aggressiveness, which obviously isn’t a problem in Philadelphia. Again, if they want Bay, put their best option on the table and be done with it.

PINEIRO: Best pitcher left on market.

PINEIRO: Best pitcher left on market.

The Mets will now have more competition for guys like Joel Pineiro and Jason Marquis. Pineiro is the best pitcher left on the market with Lackey gone. The Mets are deluding themselves if they believe the price will drop for those two. Remember, as the supply of pitching shrinks, the price has to increase to meet the demand.

The Phillies have improved, and arguments can be made both the Braves and Marlins are better. The Mets, meanwhile, have loaded up on reserve catchers and still covet Bengie Molina.

The Mets are playing the Hot Stove Season much the way they did the regular season. If this continues much longer, the results will be the same.

22 thoughts on “Sorting things out ….

  1. Actually, we don’t really know if Bay wants to play for the Mets. It could be any amount they throw at him wouldn’t be enough. My problem with Bay if I were the GM< is that he isn’t worth much more than what I already offered. So do you react to the fanbase? Or do you play it smart and not overpay? I would tend to bump it up to 5 years for 80 mil and that would be my limit.

  2. Steve (1): The longer this drags on the more the Mets will be enticing to him. That’s what the Mets seem to be banking on. But, somebody will step in before this is over. … Your limit is what I estimated it would take to land him.-JD

  3. 1. The fan base is already turned off. Jeff Wilpon opened his mouth on the FAN and said money is no problem for Omar. Well, they didn’t get Lackey and I agree with Delcos they ain’t matching the Holliday offer. Now if the Mets don’t get Bay they have totally lost the average fan. The die hard, well guys like you and me are stuck with them forever but we don’t fill stadii. nThe average guy isn’t studying whether or ot Lackey got too much. He’ll only think Met tickets are a rip off. Unless Omar has a blockbuster deal coming he has to get Bay. He can’t take the chance on the Yankees taking him and his big sign, literally and figuratively is Bengie Molina. An empty City dump in only year 2!! Joel Piniero or Kelvim Escobar or Carlos Delgado aren’t selling any tickets.

  4. 4. Chiti, If the purpose of signing Bay is to fill seats, they will be sorely mistaken. He isnt going to be a gate attraction either. I say sign Nady cheap and wait a year to bring along some minor leaguers to fill your holes or be trade bait. The owners have forgotten that this country is in a deep recession. The contracts they are handing out this year are not in line with reality. Molina thinks he can get 3 years now. Bad timing for Omar.

  5. 6

    What minor leaguers? there are no OF in AAA. FMart does not count.

    I want to see FMart play one year without going to the hospital.

    The only other guy we have just got to AA and may or may not be worth it.

  6. 8.Dave, Sometimes you have to take a step backwards before you can take 2 steps ahead. Its time to see what you have with FMart. If he misses a large part of another season you have to write him off. Last time I looked Thole was hitting close to .400 in winter ball and Ike projects to be ready in 2011. They say all the talent is in the lower minors, well another year and some of them will advance and some falter. Its not what I want either, but overspending for Bay and Molina is going to clog those positions for years with bad contracts and its not going to put us over the top. We also need to see if our major league players are healthy now.

  7. I just saw the Sox are interested in Nady. Can someone please wake Minaya from his coma?

  8. Nady is no better than Pagan. I think they’ll end up with Bay. As for filling the stadium that’s done with wins and contending down the stretch, not marquee players. If everyone comes back healthy the Mets will contend, at least for the wildcard. By the way swapping Lee for Halladay really doesn’t leave the Phils with a dominant rotation so don’t give the the NL East crown just yet.

  9. 11. TMS, I like Pagan,too. But after only flashing his talent for half a year, Id like to see a backup plan. Nady could also platoon with Murphy at first base.

  10. I think the difference for me is that I am truly ok if the Mets let Bay and even Holliday go this year. They still need to improve, but I don’t need to see the big splash on this team because I am more worried about 2011 than I am in 2010 right now. If we can get the right player that will make a difference for the next 4 years at the right price then pull the trigger. If we can’t then get the Spackle out and do some patchwork with 1 year deals to fill some holes and got to bat.

    My worst fear is that we significantly overpay for an existing free agent for “splash” value and to show that we are “not cheap” (whatever that means for the 4th highest payroll or whereever we are now).

    There are still guys that would be a great fit for this team and have that value, Bay could be one of them if we don’t have to go nuts for him, so I am okay with the not too aggressive approach for him personally.

  11. BTW, on Piniero/Marquis. I personally like Marquis better and the price doesn’t have to go up if the demand isn’t driving it. It is not like we are seeing all these teams giving Piniero the 4 year deal he is reportedly looking for. And if some team does, then as I suggested in my last post, then let him go.

  12. JamesSC (16): Pineiro might be the best available pitcher on the market. He is also a lifetime 87-79 pitcher with a career 4.39 ERA. I don’t see Don Drysdale here. I wouldn’t break the bank for him. You also have to wonder how much of Pineiro winning 15 games last year had to do with pitching coach Dave Duncan.-JD

  13. 11. TMS you are living in a past reality. Yes, it used to be that you filled seats by winning games and having a pennant race and a filled up stadium in August and September was enough. With the costs today your philosophy is a loser. Teams need to sell as many season tickets as possible so they have sell out or near sell outs in April and May. You do that two ways. You either win the year before and sell tickets on your past excitement or you buy players who are advertised as big name and are drawing cards. (Except Boston and Chicago Cubs and NY Yankees who are unique to the world)
    6. Sadecki, you may be partially right but I think some tickets get renewed with hm because people will say at least they’re trying to stay competitive with the rest of the NL East.

  14. Thats why I like Marquis better, he is 94-83, only 30 years old and with the same ERA and has pitched for a number of good team (admittedly not always fantastically or in key roles, but his teams have done fairly well).

    He is a quality #3 guy to me and has some value for next year and the next 3 years has some decent value. Piniero is the same age but wants 4 years and is mostly vying on last years results to get that which I agree worry me outside of the Cardinals.

  15. #17, yes if the Mets dont make a big move this off season they will pay for it in season ticket sales next year. They just have to decide if the costs of making that big move will be worth that. If they finish stronger next year and have more momentum going for them into 2011 and make deals they will get those season tickets back and some.

    Thats why I think the Mets will be willing to spend this year, but I think they are also willing to not spend if the right deal doesn’t come out.

  16. 15. How do you know he won’t get what he wants?? Did you think Wolf would get a 3 year deal for @ 10 mil each? Did you think Lackey would get Burnett money without a bidding war even? I won’t go on. You know the high contracts better than I do. There’s no reason to make an assumption that the market is going to collapse now. Last year was the year of the bargain and Omar passed on the bargains. This year Omar was looking for the bargains and they aren’t there.
    I suspect he gives Bay 5 years about 16 per or 5/15 with a vesting option. Then Met fans hope he doesn’t become DH material for quite a while! If you don’t think the fan reaction on talk radio is important to the club then I say you are wrong. A team down doesn’t need more bad publicity. The stadium isn’t new and unique any more. Omar needs to sell tickets and win. He’s not doing it with Igarishi.

  17. 9 Ray

    Thole has had one good year. His defense by all accounts needs work. Ike has had a good year. I want to see more.

    Let us say they get called up at end of 10. They will be young. I would not count on them driving this club for 2 or 3 years. I have mostly given up on FMart. I think he is too injury prone. I hope he works out, but..

    Also we have no pitching. Our single biggest issue is no pitching. We have Niese and Holt, although Holt seems to have regressed. What else do we have? Nothing top line. Nothing to help Santana before he retires.

    I say we get Bay. That will add some offense. It will also lessen the load on the other players. If FMart actually comes up he will have to fight for time rather than being given it. That is a good thing. Adds depth and competition.

    I want to see the team add to its minors. I don’t have a lot of hope for that though.

  18. 21. Dave, I never said the minors were loaded. Every year Omar fixes what was wrong last year. Then 2 more holes appear. Its not working. It may be time to change direction but as Chiti and others have noted they need to sell tickets so I expect them to overspend for not premium players who we will be waiting for thier contracts to expire in a few years if that long. Holliday is the exception. I believe He is a premium talent who can be productive for a long time yet.