Well, you can’t say the Mets didn’t make an offer to one of the Big Three. They are in at a $65 million over four years for Jason Bay. Considering the initial Red Sox offer was for $60 million and he’s reportedly asking for $80 million indicates the Mets are in an auction they have no chance of winning.
The Mets will need to up their offer by at least 50 percent to be a serious contender for Bay.
The Mets are expected to offer catcher Bengie Molina a contract before the winter meetings break up this afternoon. If so, they obviously won’t get a response today. Just because the Mets will leave Indianapolis without making a splash it doesn’t mean they won’t get something done.
Omar Minaya said the Mets are talking and laying the groundwork for the future. It’s usually like this during the winter meetings. Not too often does the blockbuster happen during the meetings as it usually is an information gathering process. For free agents, there’s usually the obligatory visit to the new city and stadium to be wined and dined.
Minaya said the Mets would be “players,” but he didn’t say big players and there’s a difference.
Reports out of Boston has the Mets interested in Jason Bay. Why wouldn’t they be? However, interest and willingness are two different things. Omar Minaya said they are in contact with agents and general managers.
This would include the agent for Bay.
Because Bay would be the cheapest of the Big Three – John Lackey and Matt Holliday – he would be a more probable signing. Even so, the reported numbers are still steep at $!6 million a season for five years. That’s an $80 million chunk of change, and my impression is if the Mets spent that kind of money they’ll spread it over several areas.
Bay is a good player, but not that good.
Omar Minaya just finished with us. Among the highlights. Or lowlights, as the case might be:
* Said the Mets’ needs for a starter and catcher are more likely to be filled via free agency than the trade market.
* Despite rumors of Randy Wolf being close to a deal, Minaya said it was his understanding the lefty “is still on the board.”
* Said nothing has changed since yesterday and the team isn’t close to making a move. Today was spent exchanging information. “Nothing is close,” he said.
* For the most part believes the pitchers are on the high side in terms of the years they are asking. That includes Wolf wanting three years.
* To the news Ryan Church was designated for assignment by Atlanta, meaning the Mets won that deal. “I haven’t had many W’s lately. I’ll take it,” he said.
Despite how last season unraveled, and the collapses of the previous two years, Mets manager Jerry Manuel insists his team doesn’t have a delicate psyche and said a fast start wasn’t essential for a good year.
MANUEL: He needs a fast start.
It is, however, important for something else.
“If they want to keep me around it is,” Manuel joked.
Manuel also admitted the Phillies are the team to beat in the National League.
“How can I say we’re the team to beat,” Manuel asked. “We haven’t won anything. The Phillies are the team to beat.”