A few weeks ago, before the blogosphere erupted with stories about the Mets trading for either Cliff Lee or Roy Oswalt, I wrote an article here on MMO, The New Mets Ace In The Hole.
Since then there have been more Cliff Lee/Roy Oswalt stories than Charlie Sheen has DUI’s. I think Michael Branda (Jessup) said it best in his article, Ranking The Potentially Available Pitchers:
“I decided last night that I am officially tired of Cliff Lee and Roy Oswalt.”
With that said I’m going to make one final push for Lee. But of course you are Mr. Spector; why let the better angel of your nature just let it be? My apologies to Abe Lincoln but, Abe wasn’t a Met fan.
Johan Santana, for whatever reason, is not the same Santana the Mets traded for. Be it age, or injury or just pure luck, Johan hasn’t been as sharp as he was in Minnesota. That said, I’d still do the trade for him in a heartbeat.
He’s a warrior and his skill level is still head and shoulders above a majority of Major League pitchers. Remember the Mets are the team that at one time boasted Al Leiter as it’s number one. Don’t get me wrong I loved Al Leiter. Johan, even with his few shaky starts this year, and still recovering as he has said from off-season elbow surgery, is more than worthy of being considered a number one.
However, I like to have insurance. Cliff Lee, could be to the Mets what Aflac is to us regular folk. Lee as we all know comes with his own set of baggage, but I prefer to think of it as the Louis Vuitton variety.
None of us are completely sold on Lee here, as I said regarding Jessup. Our very own Taryn Cooper wrote an article recently over at My Summer Family, Weighing in on Cliff Lee. I totally get the skepticism surrounding Lee, especially if Seattle’s demands become unworkable.
Even the best sports writers with all the access they have or think they have, really don’t know what goes on behind closed doors. When the Mets made the move to acquire Santana, the Yankees if you recall, were the team that all the writers felt he was going to.
It was a done deal. Fini. The Mike Piazza deal took everyone by shock since nobody had a clue the Mets would land Piazza after the Marlins acquired him from the Dodgers.
We don’t know if Omar Minaya can work a deal for Lee that mimics the Johan deal; leaving a 72 hour window to negotiate an extension. Lee’s agent has stated that he wants to test the free agent market. That’s all well and good until the dollar signs are flowing.
Will it be wise to lock Lee into a 5 year deal at around 16 million per, it’s more than debatable. If you really think the Mets are better off doing nothing, relying on the likes of an R.A. Dickey or Takahashi to solidify the rotation, I’m sorry but I can’t agree with that. Nor can I argue for going after one of the slew of second and third tier pitchers either. Pretending to get help isn’t the same as being serious about wanting to win the whole enchilada.
Sure Takahashi and Dickey have been inspirational and fun to watch but at the same time, the league hasn’t really seen them enough to create a detailed scouting report on them. The more they go out there the more their weaknesses will be revealed.
The arguments against Lee some say outweigh the reasons the Mets should get him. I’m the last one in favor of depleting the minors for Lee. However I’m not convinced yet that he would bolt New York after the season. I’m also not resigned to think that Omar has to unload the minors for him either.
It’s in Seattle’s best interest at this point, not to hold on to him and just get a draft pick or two. Lets face it, if Lee stays in Seattle and signs with a top tier team next year, Seattle will get their first round picks, further down in the draft. I’m sure they would like more bang for our buck.