This Year’s Free Agent Class And How It Affects The Mets
I recently looked into who will be available in this year’s free agent class. There are many big names, but these names will likely come with expensive price tags. Additionally, many of these big name players are not so young anymore.
Whoever is in charge of making the decisions in Queens (which according to Jeff Wilpon we will find out shortly!), it might be a wise strategy to avoid these big name free agents and either improve the team via trade or letting the young players develop.
Here are only some of the big name free agents available and how the Mets should approach them this offseason.
Of all the free agents out there, Lee is the golden goose. His numbers don’t lie; this guy is at the top of his game and has proven he can be clutch in the postseason. Lee will likely get upwards of a six-year deal worth well over the $100 million mark.
As much as I and other Met fans would like to see Lee in Flushing, let’s be honest. It’s not going to happen.
Of the players available right now, no other player would more help the Mets win immediately than Carl Crawford. Crawford can do it all: hit for average, a little power, field, throw, and boy can the man run.
He would be an ideal fit for Citi Field. Imagine a healthy Reyes, Pagan and Crawford (in no particular order) atop the Mets lineup. They would be deadly on the bases. Jason Bay would have to shift to RF if the Mets signed Crawford (don’t know how that would work out).
However, Mets fans, this seems like another deal that’s not going to happen. Crawford is about to cash in big like Lee, and the Amazins really aren’t in any position to be adding huge chunks of payroll.
And with Beltran still in house, the only way the Mets would make a play for Crawford is if they trade Beltran (seeming more unlikely each day).
In my opinion, Adam Dunn is the most consistently player in the game today. Every year, he hits 40 HR, drives in 100 runs, walks 100 times and strikes out 150 times. He is a legitimate power threat and even Citi Field cannot contain him (remember that shot he hit to the bridge two seasons ago?).
Dunn however is a one dimensional player. He may be better off suited to a DH role in the AL. The only reason I mention Dunn as a possibility is if the Mets trade Ike Davis for a starting pitcher which would leave a hole at first base. I’m not saying I think or even want the Mets to do this, but I figured I would list it as a possible option.
Oh Manny. Manny, Manny, Manny. You’re 38 now, when did that happen? It seemed like only yesterday you were crushing balls over the Green Monster and even orchestrating a late season playoff push in LA.
And now you’re a free agent again. I wonder how many teams will come knocking. I hope one of them is absolutely NOT the Mets. If this was three years ago, I’d say go for it. The man proved he could still hit like a machine despite his age. However, now is not the time to be adding Manny.
We have enough headaches as it is. Thank you K-Rod!
Ever since he came up with Cleveland, I have envisioned V-Mart on the Mets. He has serviceable (but not fantastic) catching skills but is a terrific contact hitter with plenty of pop. It looks like the Red Sox will try to retain him in any way possible.
I like Josh Thole. He’s not going to hit home runs like Piazza used to, but he can be an offensive weapon. He sprays the ball well to all fields and has good gap power. He will most likely hit seventh or eighth.
V-Mart would be a great addition, but it looks like another deal that won’t happen.
Something should be noted about the free agent market for starting pitchers. A guy has ONE good year, and everyone is ready to throw big bucks at him. Some examples: Gil Meche (five-years, $55 million contract with KC) and of course Oliver Perez (three-years, $36 million…sorry I just threw up a little).
Pavano has had two good years his whole career: 2003 with the Marlins that allowed him to cash in with the Yankees and now 2010 with the Twins in which he won 17 games.
He is a solid back of the rotation option, but the Mets should stay away from him and his stache. Who needs his stache when we got Keith Hernandez?
The O-dawg has openly expressed his interest in wanting to play for the Mets (that can’t exactly be said for many players). I have touched on this possible signing in the past. He may be a good option on a one-year deal, but with Tejada on the verge of becoming an everyday player (hopefully), I’m not sure if the Mets will pull the trigger on Hudson.
So there you have it, some free agents who are available this winter that will garner much attention from many teams. But the Mets might be better off sitting tight, maybe making a trade or two to improve and hope that they can field a competitive team.
I may have missed a few free agents this year who may be on the Mets radar. Please comment on who you think may be a good signing that I missed.
For the Mets, it will come down to patience and hope. I’ve said it before, and I will say it again.
*Side note: I very much enjoyed watching Ryan Howard stand there with the bat on his shoulder with the game on the line.
About the Author: Jim Mancari
Jim Mancari hails from Massapequa, N.Y. He recently earned a Master's degree in Journalism at Hofstra University. He is a devout Mets fan and takes pride in his team, despite their lack of success over the last few years. Like all Mets fans, Jim has plenty of hope. He also writes as the sports reporter for the Brooklyn Tablet newspaper and the senior editor of metroBASEBALL Magazine. Click my name to view my personal website.
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