Jan 23

Mets sign Alex Cora

Alex Cora is finally official, being announced to a one-year, $2 million deal by the Mets. The veteran infielder, 33, can play any where in the infield save catcher.

Cora will give manager Jerry Manuel a quality rest for David Wright and Jose Reyes. I know what most of you are thinking: He’ll most likely spend a lot of time at second base.

Cora hit .270 last year at Boston, so he’s not automatic out.

Said GM Omar Minaya: “You win championships with a 25-man roster.”

Jan 23

Mets sign Garcia

GARCIA: Worth the gamble.

GARCIA: Worth the gamble.

GM Omar Minaya said a team can’t have enough pitching, that he’s always interested in stockpiling bodies for spring training.

Freddy Garcia, 34, who has pitched in just 14 games the last two seasons because of an injured shoulder, qualifies more as a body than he does certified pitching. He’s logged only 73 combined innings with Detroit and Philly the last two years, but was worth the risk to be signed to a minor league deal last night that could balloon to $7.5 million with incentives (starts and/or innings).

Garcia won 17 games for the 2006 White Sox, and the Mets had some interest after that season.At this point, Garcia is another body, but a good signing if he’s healthy for that cost. It also sends a message to Oliver Perez they aren’t waiting.

Jan 22

What about Griffey?

Ken Griffey, like a lot of people, is looking for work. He’s not ready to retire, and hitting 18 homers last season with 71 RBI in 490 at-bats. Not great, but good enough in a part time role.

While the Mets aren’t in it for Manny Ramirez, and I don’t believe they’ll be able to make a trade with the Yankees to reaquire Xavier Nady. They apparently, and this is too bad, aren’t interested in Adam Dunn.

Why not give Griffey a year? The guy still has his moments, and for one year, he’d be a good fit in left field.

Jan 21

Maine, Mets at salary odds again

MAINE: Meet in the middle.

MAINE: Meet in the middle.

Last spring, after negotiations failed to produce a deal, the Mets renewed John Maine as is their right. They are $800,000 apart this year.

Maine wants $3 million after going 10-8 last year in 25 starts, his year cut short by a shoulder injury that required surgery. The Mets are at $2.2 million.

Here’s a thought: Why not meet in the middle?

I can see both sides on this one. Mets: Maine won five less games and is coming off an injury. Maine: Regarded as a rotation key with big expectations.