The Curious Case Of Trying To Trade R.A. Dickey


If GM Sandy Alderson spent as much energy trying to sign R. A. Dickey as he has trying to trade him, the contract would be done by now.

Alderson told reporters in Nashville he’s seeking a “difference maker,” for Dickey, which means a power-hitting outfielder, preferably from the right side. A difference maker, by definition, would mean a proven commodity, as Alderson said he’s seeking immediate help, not somebody the team will “hope” be a player in two or three years.

Alderson is apparently hitting a wall when it comes to asking for other team’s prospects, and he’s viewing this as an exchange of $5-million contracts.Trouble is, where is Alderson going to find such a presence for only $5 million?

Reportedly, the Mets have talked with Boston, Kansas City, Toronto and Arizona, but their asking price is too high in terms of prospects.

Timing is everything, and unfortunately for Dickey his is muddled and mixed. On one hand, he’s coming off a Cy Young Award season. However, the other hand is 38 years old and grips what many in the game still regard as a gimmick pitch.

Dickey has only had one star year, with two decent years prior. As brilliant as he was last season, and for what he brings a team, there’s not a large enough sampling to warrant a monster pay-day. It just won’t happen.

That’s also the reason why the Mets are reluctant to sign him. Giving Dickey $30 million over three years just won’t happen. For as intelligent as Dickey is, he just doesn’t understand that, or like countless before him, won’t accept his position in the market.

It has been reported Dickey could be willing to accept less, but if true, why haven’t the Mets jumped at the opportunity? Answer: They are determined to trade him.

If Dickey were 28, none of this would be an issue. He could take less, prove himself again and get a better deal down the road. Preventing Dickey from doing that is the thought he might not be able to duplicate 2012, that maybe last year was all smoke and mirrors. Dickey might have doubts himself of doing it again, and certainly doing it again with those numbers.

At 28, Dickey could net the “difference maker,” Alderson covets.

“What we’ve tried to say to ourselves is that we have to get back difference makers,” Alderson told reporters. “It doesn’t have to be a catcher. It doesn’t have to be an outfielder. It doesn’t have to be anything. But it has to be a difference maker. Because R.A. is a difference maker.”

If Dickey is a difference maker, and last year he was, then dealing him would leave a huge void, one the Mets would have a difficult time filling. Dealing Dickey could leave the Mets in a worse position than they are now, especially, if all their projected young pitching doesn’t pan out.

As it is unfolding now, this doesn’t look like a win-win situation for the Mets or Dickey.




7 thoughts on “The Curious Case Of Trying To Trade R.A. Dickey

  1. Why is there a surprise. This hideous GM wouldn’t trade Hairston unless he could get a top three prospect , did he really think anyone would overpay in the Winter for Dickey when there are lots of good pitchers available for merely money? Maybe in July loser GM.

    • Nathan: You’re right on a lot of levels. The FA market is the way to go know because there’s no reason to spend players and money on a player when you only have to spend money. Hairston was one of the few players they could have traded last July and received something. Now, he’s gone.-JD

  2. I agree that the Mets seem intent on trading their Cy Young winner.

    I just saw an interview of RA where he seemed thoughtful and said all the right things. He said that Sandy’s job is to make the team better and if they trade him he understands. He wants to be traded to a winner. To a team that wants to win. This may not be the Mets.

    I also understand the gimmick pitch and yes it is fickle. But he is a veteran and seems to know what he is doing. How does a gimmick pitch net the strike outs and walks that he did this year? He has been remarkably consistent even in the two other years ( where his record could be better with a better team around him ). I understand the bias against his pitch but really he throws it and throws it for strikes. That shows control. The other team knows it is coming and he still strikes them out.

    When Greinke gets signed there will be many GM’s talking to Sandy to get RA. That is when he will be traded and that is when we get an elite prospect to join our team. RA will be a steal if he signs for 3 years at $30M.

    • dave: (Your first comment). I can’t explain the gimmick pitch. I don’t even know if Dickey can. He had an extraordinary year command wise with that pitch. It would be rare for him to duplicate it. … I agree, Greinke is the first domino when it comes to pitching.-JD

  3. “There’s a hundred different factors that went into this decision,” Wright said during a news conference to announce the deal at the winter meetings. “But before any of them could be taken into consideration, number one had to be that commitment to winning. And I got the answers that I wanted to hear.”

    Either they don’t believe RA deserves the pitching award or they lied to David. If they care about winning the next few years RA needs to be signed.