On a day when a few extra coals have been added to the Hot Stove, the Phillies are close to trading for ace pitcher Roy Halladay, while Jon Heyman of SI.com is reporting that John Lackey will be signing a five-year, $85 million contract with the Boston Red Sox.
In related news, the Mets have announced the signing of Jack Squat. Squat hasn’t done much in the past and might go unnoticed in the Mets clubhouse, but that is due to the fact that no one ever knows he’s there. Since he wasn’t a Type A or Type B free agent, the Mets pounced on Squat since they knew he would sign for next to nothing.
I have to joke about this because if I didn’t, I’d be crying. The Mets are just twiddling their thumbs watching players they should have acquired not only sign with other teams, but get traded to teams that will have a great impact on where the Mets will finish in 2010 and beyond.
Not only are the top pitchers being signed and/or traded to other teams, but now the Mets might have to overpay for pitchers such as Jason Marquis and Joel Piñeiro so that they don’t sign with other teams. I have nothing against either pitcher, but what if Santana gets hurt again like he did at the end of the 2009 season? Neither Marquis nor Piñeiro is good enough to be the ace of a staff the way Halladay and Lackey were with the Blue Jays and Angels, respectively.
The 2010 Mets with a staff of Santana, Marquis/Piñeiro, Pelfrey, Maine and some $36 million pitcher looks a lot like the 2009 staff, meaning mediocre at best. Of course, on the bright side, the Red Sox might not be able to afford Jason Bay now that Lackey will be getting a couple of bucks from them. Unfortunately, Jason Bay can’t pitch and now that Halladay and Lackey appear to be off the radar, there is a dearth of ace-type starters for the Mets to consider.
The Citi Field press conference room is resembling a ghost town.
Let’s just put it this way. The way the Mets have gone about this offseason, it looks like they’re taking the “let’s take our time and see how this all plays out” approach. What might have worked in the past is not working this time around. Omar Minaya can’t let other teams, especially his main rivals, scoop up player after player while he waits intently in the Citi Field press conference room for the player introduction that’s not going to happen.
While teams like the Phillies and Red Sox are giving their fans awesome stocking stuffers, Mets fans are just getting lumps of coal in their stockings. At least we’ll be able to use that coal to heat up our stoves because it sure looks like the Mets’ hot stove isn’t using it.