Immediate speculation is this deal would enable the Cubs to free up some of their young pitching to re-start trade talks with San Diego for Jake Peavy.
Mets manager Jerry Manuel was in New York the other day at a charity function and was asked about Manny Ramirez. He wants him, but knows it’s not happening.
Said Manuel: “We have to deal with what we have. And, we have a pretty good team. We feel like we have enough tools to make it to the playoffs.”
Do you agree? As they are comprised now, do you believe the Mets are a playoff team?
You would think with less than three weeks before spring training there would be a market for a 27-year-old lefthander who throws heat.
If Oliver Perez were to get five years as agent Scott Boras wants, he would have gotten them by now. A combination of Perez’s wildness, his agent, and perhaps the prevailing thought he’d always wind up with the Mets is keeping teams at bay.
C’mon, let’s cut through the smoke. Give him three years at $12 million each with an option for a fourth year, and get this thing done.
I spoke with Boras this summer when the Mets were in LA and remember him telling me Perez wasn’t erratic. I didn’t believe him then and I don’t believe him now. If Boras really had that much faith in his client, he’d take two years and jump at the chance to do this again when Perez is 29.
Why do you think he hasn’t?
Manny Ramirez is still floating out there, his thundering right-handed bat a temptation 29 teams have managed to resist. Only the Los Angeles Dodgers have an offer on the table, and Ramirez’s refusal of $45 million over two years seems stunningly arrogant considering the line
Nobody knows which.
Last week, Jeff Wilpon told Bloomberg News the Mets weren’t interested, but he wasn’t speaking for manager Jerry Manuel, who, during a TV interview, said he’d love to have Ramirez on his team.
“To have a shot at managing him would be exciting for me,” Manuel said. “I’d love to have the opportunity to watch Manny hit every day.’’
Manuel called Ramirez “one of the best right-handed hitters in our generation,’’ and broached the topic of his reputation with the confidence of a snake charmer.
Manuel is convinced he would avoid this serpent’s tooth.
“I don’t have a problem with people that produce in the form and fashion that Manny Ramirez produces,” Manuel said. “We don’t spend, shouldn’t spend that much time in the locker room, anyway.’’
Players start drifting into the clubhouse five hours before game time, far longer than the time of game. But, if not concerned about the clubhouse, how about the field?
If Ramirez’s stars aren’t all aligned he’s been known to dog it on the bases and give up at-bats. Even though they won two World Series with him, Ramirez had no allies in the Red Sox clubhouse late last summer, including David Ortiz.
Jose Reyes has enough problems maintaining his attention as it is. Do you really want him looking up to Ramirez? And, for the money Ramirez is asking, they can sign a pitcher and a bat such as Adam Dunn.
They’ve resisted temptation so far. Hope they keep that strength.
Aaron Heilman could have ripped the Mets, but took the high road when asked about his time in New York when questioned by The Seattle Times.
“Playing in New York is the only existence I’ve known and I think you get used to it,” Heilman said. “You learn to accept the fact that you are dealing with a very passionate, very knowledgeable fan base. … New York’s one of those markets where unless you win the World Series, it’s not a good year.”
Clearly, Heilman wanted to start, but the Mets valued him in the bullpen. It was always presumed he would have left when he became a free agent. However, the Mets beat him to the punch and included him in the J.J. Putz trade.
“I certainly didn’t look at it as I really wanted to get out of New York,” Heilman told the paper. “I was kind of looking forward to going back and showing that last season was an aberration and to get back to what I normally can do.”
When he’s on his game, and he wasn’t for much of last season, he’s capable of getting hitters out from either side of the plate.
Heilman had productive stretches both in 2007 and last season, but didn’t come close to his 2006 effectiveness. Especially, when it came to keeping the ball in the park.
More than a few times he denied he was scarred by giving up the Game 7 homer in the NLCS.