Feb 05

Is Torre right about Beltran?

In his book, Joe Torre took a jab at Carlos Beltran, calling him soft mentally and questioned his leadership capabilities. It’s a rap that resurfaced during the Mets’ pennant race fades the past two years.

Torre said Beltran wanted to come to the Yankees for a discount, but was talked out of it by his agent, Scott Boras, who got him an extra year and $19 million more with the Mets (seven at $119 million).

Said Torre: “Beltran wanted to come to us, so he could hide among the trees. Nobody wants to be that guy to lead.”

Not surprisingly, Beltran refuted Torre at last night’s Thurman Munson Dinner.

“First of all, I don’t know Joe Torre personally, so I don’t know what kind of person he is,” Beltran said. “The second thing I have to say is that when I met with the Yankees when I was a free agent, he wasn’t there, so you know, he didn’t know that we talked, so I didn’t meet him. So if he did say what he said, then that’s his opinion. I don’t have to comment on that. I feel very happy where I am.”

Beltran said Torre will have one less sale.

Jan 27

Smoke coming from the Perez camp

PEREZ: Get it done.

PEREZ: Get it done.

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.

There’s not.

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?

Jan 21

Wondering about Perez ….

PEREZ: What's he thinking?

PEREZ: What is he thinking?

We all know about Oliver Perez’s inconsistency and propensity for losing concentration on the mound. For him to be out there this long I’m starting to think his agent, Scott Boras, isn’t doing him any favors.

Perez’s mind must be all over the place, just like one of those days when he can’t find the plate. It appears Perez isn’t going to get what he wants and you have to wonder how much he’ll let it affect him on the mound.

Maybe a better strategy instead of going five years is to go two, and if he produces over that time he can do this again and cash in. Remember, last season was a walk year for Perez, and although he pitched well in spurts he still had too many moments when he didn’t and won only ten games.

Jan 15

Santana endorses Perez return

Oliver Perez is 27, lefthanded and can throw the hell out of the ball. He is also inconsistent and for all his natural skills was 10-7 with a 4.22 ERA last season. This after a seemingly breakout year in 2007.

Mets ace Johan Santana endorsed his return to GM Omar Minaya in a conference call yesterday.

“I think has learned a lot from last year,” Santana said. “I had a great time with him and hopefully Omar will be able to keep him. He matured. He learned every game is important.

“I told him from the beginning, it doesn’t matter what you do tomorrow, you have to learn from today. Sometimes he lets his emotions take over, so he could be more mature this year. Hopefully, Omar and his agent will find a way to keep him in New York. He’s not just a great guy, but a good pitcher, too. He’s going to be a good one.”

The Mets’ current thinking is $30 million over three years, but Perez’s agent, Scott Boras, wants more in both money and years, with reports of $52 million over four years.

That’s more money than Perez is worth based on production, but the thing about these contracts is they are also based on potential.

Do you believe Santana? Do you believe Perez has learned enough to take the next step? Is he worth the fourth year?

Jan 08

Mets talking with Boras ….

BORAS: Talks with Mets.

BORAS: Talks with Mets.

Scott Boras was in town the other day. Had a tour of Citi Field. Spoke with the Mets about Derek Lowe and Oliver Perez. Manny Ramirez, it appears, was not one of the topics. Meanwhile, reports out of Boston and Atlanta have the Braves making a push for Lowe.

The mystery team?

Perhaps. Of course, I would have given the no-trade to Jake Peavy if I were the Braves. The Mets were never in the talks with San Diego about Peavy.

If the Mets to get Lowe, I think they’ll have to give up more money per year than give the extra years. That’s the way to go. Besides, they can also make up extra years by adding options.