It looks like two of baseball’s biggest stars could possibly be heading toward free agency as both Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez have ceased negotiations with their respective teams.
According to a report by Marc Topkin of the St.Petersburg Times, Carl Crawford and the Tampa Bay Rays have decided to postpone all contract extension negotiations until after the season. His agent, Brian Peters, said:
“We had an opportunity to exchange ideas with the club about a contract extension for Carl and it was clear to all of us that an immediate agreement was not going to materialize. Thus, we all agreed to table discussions until the end of the year. We’d like to minimize distractions for Carl and the club and keep the focus on baseball, so we don’t plan to comment upon Carl’s contract status again until after the season.”
The three time All Star is just 28 years old and last season he tied a modern era record by stealing six bases in a game against the Boston Red Sox. He is considered to be the best defensive left fielder in the game and won the 2009 All Star Game MVP after scaling an 8′ wall to rob Brad Hawpe of a game winning homerun. The speedy outfielder has led the league in stolen bases four times and sports a .295 career batting average. I always wanted to see Crawford on the Mets, but with the Mets current outfield situation as it is, it doesn’t seem very likely.
Meanwhile at the other side of the nation, San Diego first baseman Adrian Gonzalez sounds like he is resigned to moving on after his contract expires with the Padres after the 2011 season.
“This next contract is going to be the one where I look for what I deserve. If the Padres want to keep me around, they’ll find a way to keep me around.”
His agent John Boggs told the San Diego Union-Tribune that he believes the Padres will have to trade him.
“The feeling we’re getting is more than likely they are going to have to trade Adrian Gonzalez because they can’t afford him.”
Padres CEO Jeff Moorad pretty much confirmed as much when he replied,
“The early signals indicate his cost will be greater than our ability to pay.”
Gonzalez, 27, is owed a $4.75 million in 2010 with a $5.5 million club option for 2011. He hit .277 with 40 home runs and 99 RBIs last season to go with a .407 OBP and .958 OPS.
Gonzo is another guy I would have loved to see on the Mets, but with how the Mets feel about Daniel Murphy and the up and coming Ike Davis, like Crawford, there’s little chance of Gonzalez ending up in Flushing anytime soon.