Mets Merized Online » K-Rod Tue, 17 Jan 2017 17:25:58 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Marlins Reach Out To K-Rod Mon, 09 Feb 2015 12:00:15 +0000 KRod francisco rodriguez

According to Joe Frisaro of, the Miami Marlins have reached out to agent Scott Boras regarding free agent closer Francisco Rodriguez. Nothing is imminent he says, but the club could circle back to K-Rod at some point as they look to bolster their bullpen.

Marlins GM Dan Jennings admitted to Jim Bowden on ESPN Radio, that he is considering Rodriguez as well as Rafael Soriano as he seeks to add a quality arm to deepen an already formidable bullpen.

Rodriguez, 33, is considered to be the top reliever left on the market. K-Rod saved 44 games last season with a league-high 66 games finished. An All Star in 2014, the fiery closer posted a 3.04 ERA, 0.985 WHIP with 73 strikeouts, and only 18 walks in 68 innings for the Brewers.

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Mets Entertaining A K-Rod Reunion Sat, 02 Feb 2013 00:31:34 +0000 Adding to my post from this afternoon, they Mets have entertained a reunion with former closer Francisco Rodriguez, a source told Marc Carig of Newsday.

K-Rod along with Jose Valverde are among a group of former closers who could bolster the team’s bullpen depth, writes Carig.

Speaking generally, Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said he will likely add at least one more arm to the bullpen.

“I just can’t tell you at this point who that will be,” Alderson said. “And I can’t tell you it’s going to be somebody that will displace Frankie either. We’re looking to help the pen in a variety of ways, provide some more depth and major league experience. I can’t really get into names because I’m not sure how it will turn out.”

Desperate times call for…

Original Post

You may have noticed that the Mets have signed and/or invited an abundance of relief options to Spring Training which starts in 10 days. There may even be more arms on the way. In the last seven days alone, the Mets have signed Pedro Feliciano, Scott Atchison and LaTroy Hawkins.

So why the sudden sense of urgency?

Sandy Alderson answered that question on Thursday night during his appearance on Mets Hot Stove with Kevin Burkhardt.

“I don’t know that we can have a lot of confidence in where we are at closer,” Alderson said.  “I hope Frankie does something over the next few weeks to dispel that discomfort.”

The Mets now have an official full-on competition for the closer’s job during Spring Training, in other words – the heat is on.

Frank Francisco (5.53 ERA, 1.61 WHIP), who is owed $6.5 million this season, was supposed to be the closer on Opening Day and it was his job to lose, but obviously there are now some serious questions after December surgery to remove bone chips in his elbow. And lets face it, Frank-Frank did little to inspire any confidence in him as a closer last season. If it were me calling the shots, I would have had an open competition for the closer role anyway, regardless of his injury concerns. Nobody who performed as bad as he did deserves a guaranteed job. So bring on the reinforcements…

“We’ve taken a lot of time to look at other possibilities and ways that we can shore this up.  We have added some pitching, but more at the front end of the bullpen as opposed to the back end,” Alderson said.

bobby parnellObviously, Bobby Parnell will most likely have a leg up on everyone else in camp for the job, but lets not pretend he hasn’t struggled with the role in the past. Last season, Parnell did show some improvement in pressure situations, but for his career he still has a 4.54 ERA (87 appearances) in save situations compared to a 2.45 ERA (145 appearances) in non-save situations.

After Parnell, the Mets have no real in-house options so that explains the rush to bring in as many arms as they could on the cheap.

“I think we are going to add another guy or two, between now and Spring Training,” Alderson explained. “Now, whether it’s a back-end guy that will really compete with Frankie, or whether Frankie is the guy going in and the competition comes from Bobby Parnell or someone else – who knows, we will just have to see.”

So that’s the story. While everyone is dwelling on the outfield deficiencies, there’s actually some big concerns in the bullpen as well. Hopefully this all sorts itself out by Opening Day, but you may want to strap yourself in for a bumpy ride during the 2013 season, just in case.

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Mets Have K-Rod On Their Radar Tue, 03 Jul 2012 13:27:27 +0000 Ken Davidoff of the New York Post, writes that the New York Mets want to upgrade their bullpen, and that former Met closer Francisco Rodriguez is one of a few players the front office is targeting according to what a source with knowledge of the situation.

Davidoff points out a few good reasons why the Brewers may be in “sell mode” and  why “K-Rod would be an excellent fit with the Mets — as their closer:”

Rodriguez, who is now 30, is earning $8 million dollars and probably has about half of that still coming to him for the rest of this season. He is 1-4 with no saves and has a 4.00 ERA, in 39 appearances games over 36 innings with the Brewers.

His velocity is actually higher since his time with the Mets, but he’s been less effective than what you would expect, although he is maintaining a 2:1 K/BB rate and has been very good against right-handed hitters who he’s held to a 188 batting average.

The article cites the following:

No, Rodriguez hasn’t been great this season. Yet his velocity has increased from last year — his fastball was averaging 91.4 mph compared to last year’s 90.3, according to FanGraphs — and he has been unlucky on his home runs per flyball rate (13.3 percent, as compared to his career rate of 8.2 percent). It also would be worth wagering K-Rod, who has been setting up for Milwaukee closer John Axford since the Mets traded him to the Brewers last July, would improve upon returning to his closer role

I don’t think K-Rod is cut out to be a setup man and I also believe he may thrive again in the closer role, but then there’s the small matter of what it would cost to acquire him.

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Mets Contact K-Rod Sun, 04 Dec 2011 23:19:43 +0000 This from the Hey Man…

Now that’s interesting…

Original Post 12/2

Before the Mets traded Frankie Rodriguez to the Brewers for two PTBNL’s they had the fourth best bullpen in the National League. K-rod was the closer of course, with Jason  Isringhausen performing admirably as the setup man, and Bobby Parnell and Pedro Beato were thriving in lower pressure seventh inning duties.

Then, as I wrote on August 19, 2011, this happened:

So how is everyone enjoying the K-Rod-less bullpen so far? I mean of course you all must have expected some sort of a downgrade in performance after swapping out Rodriguez for Igarashi, but I don’t think anybody could have predicted these dreadful results. The bullpen as a whole has been a virtual catastrophe except for Izzy who may not even be back next season. The Mets went from having one of the better bullpens in the majors, to what is now officially the worst bullpen in the game in August.

As I’ve written previously, I never thought Bobby Parnell or Pedro Beato had the stomach to pitch with the game on the line. It takes more than just stuff to close out games and protect one-run leads in the 8th or 9th innings – you gotta have that killer instinct – that hard edge – that intimidation factor. All the great closers have it, and it’s not something you teach or grow into either.

Just reading some of the comments that were left in that post was kind of fun. Anyway, what’s done is done and now it seems we’re on the hunt again for not only a closer but a setup man as well. That’s life.

The reason I bring this up is because oddly enough, K-Rod’s name came up in yesterday’s conference call. Here is what Sandy Alderson had to say about that trade six months later.

My biggest disappointment going back to last year was just the way we finished the season. We finished poorly, we started poorly. Part of that was attributable to injury, but some of it was a result of weakening the team later for long-term benefit. I think for example, if we’d kept Frankie Rodriguez, we would have finished well over .500. I think that the lack of a closer cost us a number of games.

In the context of how hotly this subject was debated on MMO, with regards to the bullpen imploding soon after the trade and those who called it a coincidence or just a case of younger relievers experiencing dead arms, this at least validates what my own stance was all along, and that is that the trade absolutely destroyed the bullpen and wiped out the rest of the Mets season.

I was against the trade all along, but I did learn one thing since then and that is I don’t hold Sandy Alderson accountable for having to do what he was forced to do by the Wilpons.

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Thankfully The 2011 Mets Season Is Finally Over Thu, 29 Sep 2011 16:00:47 +0000 New York Mets' Fans

Put It In The Books! The Mets 2011 season is finally over! What can I say about the Mets 2011 season except thankfully it has finally come to an end. Coming into this season I didn’t expect much and in turn we didn’t get much from this team Sandy Alderson and Terry Collins put out there this year.

I know there are people who will for some reason say this was a good season. I honestly can’t fathom what is so good about a team that finished their season 77-85, just 5 games out of last place. In fact the Mets actually finished worse than last year. That is not what I would call good. Far from it in fact!

I guess the writing was on the wall on how the season was going to go when our GM didn’t offer Jose Reyes, who won the NL batting title yesterday, an extension last off season. In fact he didn’t do much at all last offseason to improve this team. There were some free agent signings of course, bad free agent signings like Chris Young who after starting just 4 games had season ending surgery. That was no shocker, I fully expected to see him wind up on the DL. I know the Alderson defenders will cite that he was cheap but what does that matter? He was brought here to pitch for the season and if the season was only a month then it would’ve been a great signing but that’s not the case. How can we forget the great signing of Taylor Buchholz who went home and was never seen again? Let’s not even get into the mind-boggling 2 year deal that was given to D.J. Carrasco. Capuano was another bad signing by Alderson. R.A. Dickey was not deserving of a 2 year deal for one good year in 2010. Not good!

I know everyone just loves the trades Alderson did for K-Rod and Carlos Beltran. Paying most of K-Rod’s contract for what we got back was a horrible move! These guys are nowhere near worth that kind of money. In fact Alderson got played by Milwaukee. As soon as K-Rod got there, the Brewers got K-Rod to waive his option as K-Rod obviously wanted to test free agency at a year younger. It should’ve been obvious that K-Rod wanted to be a free agent next year when he enlisted the services of Scott Boras.

Beltran’s trade is another instance of paying too much. I thought Alderson was supposed to be great at saving money? Wheeler, a Single A pitcher is not worth 4 million or so dollars. If he was a Triple A pitcher on the cusp of the majors then I wouldn’t have minded so much, but of course Alderson botched this trade, I wouldn’t expect anything else from him.

Normally I would say I’m excited for the World Series to end and wait until next year, but we have to be realistic, Sandy Alderson is not a big market GM. Next year is already off to a bad start. With DJ Carrasco and Tim Byrdak returning to the pen and Terry Collins guaranteed to be back there’s not much hope. Adding to the Mets woes will be the departure of one of the best position players in this franchise’s history Jose Reyes and it wouldn’t surprise me if David Wright is traded.

In conclusion this year was bad and we should expect an even worse one in 2012.

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Mets Acquire LHP Daniel Herrera and RHP Adrian Rosario To Complete K-Rod Deal Thu, 01 Sep 2011 18:21:26 +0000 The New York Mets today announced the team acquired lefthanded pitcher Daniel Herrera and righthanded pitcher Adrian Rosario from the Milwaukee Brewers to complete the trade that sent righthanded pitcher Francisco Rodriguez and cash considerations to the Brewers on July 12.

Herrera, 26, appeared in two games with the Brewers this season after he was claimed off waivers from the Cincinnati Reds on May 23, 2011. He was 1-4 with a 2.20 ERA (15 earned runs/61.1 innings) three saves and 54 strikeouts in 46 combined games this season between Louisville (AAA) of the International League and Nashville (AAA) of the Pacific Coast League.

The 5-6, 165-pounder went 1-3 with a 3.91 ERA (10 earned runs/23.0 innings) in 36 games with the Reds in 2010. The Odessa, TX native appeared in 70 games as a rookie with the Reds in 2009, going 4-4 with a 3.06 ERA (21 earned runs/61.2 innings).

Herrera is 5-7 with a 3.94 ERA (41 earned runs/93.2 innings) in 115 major league games with the Reds and Brewers. He has allowed 110 hits, issued 34 walks and notched 66 strikeouts.

Rosario, 21, is 4-6 with a 4.32 ERA (48 earned runs/100.0 innings) with 81 strikeouts in 35 games, 14 starts combined between Brevard Country (A) of the Florida State League and Wisconsin (A) of the Midwest League this season.

The Santiago, Dominican Republic native was claimed by the Baltimore Orioles in the 2010 Rule 5 Draft but was returned to the Brewers on March 24. Rosario began the year with Brevard County, going 4-5 with a 5.83 ERA (43 earned runs/66.1 innings) in 16 games, 14 starts. He moved to the bullpen exclusively with Wisconsin. In 19 games with the Timber Rattlers, Rosario was 0-1 with five saves and 1.34 ERA (five earned runs/33.2 innings) with 42 strikeouts.

The righthander is 16-19 with a 4.64 ERA (146 earned runs/283.0 innings) in 94 minor league games, 29 starts with 122 walks and 236 strikeouts. He was originally signed by Milwaukee as a non-drafted free agent on August 21, 2006.

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MMO Exclusive: An Interview With Mets Beat Writer Andy Martino Mon, 18 Jul 2011 12:30:08 +0000 Earlier this week I had the pleasure of speaking with Daily News writer Andy Martino. For those of you that do not know, Andy is a BBWAA member who does an exceptional job for Daily News as their Mets beat writer. He wrote for the Philadelphia Inquirer as the Phillies beat writer during the 2009 season before returning to the Daily News. Here are the highlights of our E-mail conversation:

-Andy, after returning to the Mets after writing for the Phillies, which team have you enjoyed reporting on the most in your career?

Both provided unique and rewarding experiences, but I have to say–covering losing and dysfunction last year in New York, and the transition that it led to, provided richer material than covering a World Series run in 2009. Plus, after being a transplanted New Yorker living in Philly for a year, it was nice to get home to family and friends in New York.

-What was it like to return to the Daily News after beginning your career there as an intern?

It felt more like a continuation than a new beginning.  Because I knew nearly all my colleagues well, it was an easy transition. The only difficult part was staying in a buddy’s extra bedroom in Brooklyn while my wife and I looked for somewhere to live on short notice (the offer from the Daily News came rather suddenly, and left us scrambling).

-As a BBWAA writer, who do you believe is a Hall of Famer that is on the 2012 ballot?

I am a BBWAA member, but I don’t support the idea of journalists voting for the Hall of Fame. I think it’s a conflict of interest, and I also think the questions of “who is a Hall of Famer” is impossible to answer, because there is no set standard. I am not eligible to vote yet (you have to be a BBWAA member for 10 years), but will not vote once I’m able to.  To be honest, I don’t think about the HOF much, and don’t really know who is on the 2012 ballot.

-Would you ever vote a baseball player into the Hall who has been proven to take steroids? Someone like Clemens or Ortiz who were accused, but deny the accusations?

This is one of the issues that I have with the Hall of Fame. How are they going to deal with this? There is no good answer.  It would probably be better if it were just a museum, rather than something that involves elections.  Then we could focus not on issues like “do steroid cheats belong in the Hall of Fame,” but on questions more relevant to society like, “should the MLB All-Stars who spoke out last year about Arizona’s immigration law, have boycotted the game?”

Wherever one stands on that issue, we should be talking about stuff like that more often, when we talk about sports.

-What was your take on the K-Rod trade? Was it just a salary dump? Who is the winner in this deal?

It was a good deal for both teams. A total salary dump for the Mets, who had to get out from under that $17.5 million vesting option for next year.  So they found a taker for much of the contract, and the Brewers–who were a championship caliber team except for their middle relief–get bullpen depth during a year that they’re going for it. 

The Mets were worried that the market for K-Rod would drop later in July, as more closers became available, so this really was the right time for both teams to make the move.

-Does the moving of K-Rod increase the chances of re-signing Reyes? If so, by how much have their chances increased?

It certainly doesn’t hurt, but that is still going to be a tall order for the Mets. Reyes will be seeking close to top dollar, and the Mets have budget constraints.  But moving K-Rod does clear payroll space, and probably slightly increases their chances of resigning Reyes.

-Was the K-Rod trade a waiving of the white flag on Alderson’s part for the 2011 season?

He claims it wasn’t. If you ask me, Beltran represents the white flag. But I would hope that, in a division with Atlanta and Philly playing so well, the Mets front office understands that this is not s playoff year, and that they plan accordingly.

-After the July 31st deadline, where do you believe Carlos Beltran will go or stay? Mets? Giants? Red Sox?

I think the Mets will shop him aggressively, but hold out for a favorable deal.  Let’s say it’s 65-35 he is dealt. Giants, Red Sox, Phillies, Tigers, Indians–there are a lot of places he would fit.

-The Phillies have interest in acquiring a right fielder with a power bat and the Mets have just that on the market in Carlos Beltran. Do you think that Alderson, a GM who traded Jose Canseco to the Rangers during a pennant race back in his Oakland days, would deal Beltran to the rival, first-place Phillies?
If Alderson judged that a deal with the Phils was right for the Mets from a baseball standpoint, I do not believe that the “rivalry” would in any way hold him back.

-Have you heard anything about Mets rental players on the market other than Beltran that could be dealt before July 31st such as Capuano or Byrdak? Any rumblings about Pelfrey as a possible trade candidate?

Byrdak and Isringhausen could go.  Capuano makes sense, although there haven’t been a whole lot of rumblings there yet.  As for Pelfrey, the Mets would be selling low now, after a spotty first half, but maybe this winter.

-Out of Keith Hernandez, Gary Carter and Mike Piazza, do you believe any of them should have their numbers retired by the Mets?

Those are three of the most important players in franchise history, so if anyone deserves it, they do.

-Who is more likely to return from injury in 2011, Ike Davis or Johan Santana?

Tough one. We’ll know more about Davis soon. If he has surgery, he’s done, so I’ll go with Santana.

-Based on the age of current players, financial situations and farm systems, who do you think has the brightest future 5-10 years down the road, Mets or Phillies?

Wow. The Mets’ financial situation makes them a wild card, but assuming the franchise finds a way to stabilize, I’ll choose them.  There is a cyclical nature to contending in baseball, and the Phillies are on the backside of their run.

-You have been accused of being too critical of the Mets in comparison to other writers and overly praising  the Phillies by some readers, what is your response to that?

Many readers in Philly accused me of being a Mets fan. Many readers in New York accuse me of being a Phillies fan.  Both are, of course, ridiculous.  I’m a reporter.

-Finally, Do you think Brian Wilson’s spandex tuxedo at the ESPY’s out-did Lady Gaga’s egg arrival at the Grammy awards?

Ha.  I’d have to say so. You expect it from Lady Gaga, but from an athlete? Good for Wilson, for always being an interesting character.

I would just like to thank Andy once again for taking the time to answer my questions. He was truly a pleasure to speak with. To read Andy Martino’s excellent work, you can read his blog here. You can follow Andy on twitter at @SurfingTheMets. Also if you would like to read my full interview with Andy Martino, click Here.

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Does The K-Rod Trade Make The Mets Buyers? Wed, 13 Jul 2011 21:28:54 +0000 Now with the Mets having cleared one of their biggest offseason worries in the Francisco Rodriguez vesting option, does that make the Mets buyers during the trade deadline?

Although a game has yet to be played after the All-Star break, this Mets team already takes on a new appearance. The bullpen corps is comprised of the same pitchers, and two (Bobby Parnell & Pedro Beato) will look to close out games now. Jason Isringhausen is a candidate to close as well, due to experience but this is a new dawn of allowing prospects to try and carry their weight. If either one of the three closer candidates can prove to be adequate if not excel in closing out games, the flexibility it provides financially is immense.

The thought is that with some added free space on the payroll this year, can they become players for another starter, possibly improve at catcher or add some right-handed bench depth? The options have expanded, and now the Mets can explore in-season options even though this K-Rod move is seen as somewhat of a defeatist move from a standpoint of competition.

In the offseason, the K-Rod option – no loger a worry, opens more options. Will the Mets re-sign Jose Reyes? That still isn’t known, but the amount of payroll that was opened is a much more positive sign today then it was a few days ago. Will the Mets re-sign Beltran? It is a dark horse option, but maybe Beltran won’t feel as betrayed by the Mets since most of the damage was done by the Minaya regime. Will the Mets look to sign some help in the offseason in both the starting rotation and at the catcher position.

This has been an interesting last few months, and with 18 days until the trade deadline, this can become a very exciting time for Mets fans.

For other thoughts, Mets news and Mets related talk, follow me on twitter @TheSeanKenny

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Latest Reactions and Updates On K-Rod Trade Wed, 13 Jul 2011 17:32:17 +0000

Latest Updates & Reactions on K-Rod Trade:

Buster Olney – There is reportedly a list of five minor leaguers that the Mets will choose from. None of them considered top prospects.

Mike Diaz – Round 1: Sandy Alderson vs. Scott Boras goes to Alderson. Boras got punched in the gut & took a right to the chin.

Francisco Rodriguez – “I want to thank all the Mets fans for their great support during these two and a half years.” (In Spanish)

Buster Olney – Milwaukee was willing to take on more money than any other team, so the decision was simple for the Mets.

Eric Simon  - How the PTBNL works:

  • The trade must be completed within six months of the rest of the transaction.
  • Vast majority of PTBNLs are minor leaguers, by rule bo Brewers major leaguers can be included in deal.
  • They can’t be 2011 draft picks because they can’t be traded until at least a year has elapsed since they sign their contract.

Joel Sherman – Exec on K-Rod trade: “Mets did not get good prospects because Brewers don’t have any good prospects left. This was a money deal.

Andy McCullough – This isn’t the official white flag, of course. That would be Beltran. And the Mets bullpen still contains a guy with a 2.66 xFIP in 24.2 IP.

Note: Just checked, and no word yet on who will replace K-Rod on 25-man roster.

Updated by Joe D.

Original Post 12:05 AM

The Mets have traded closer Francisco Rodriguez PLUS CASH to the Milwaukee Brewers for two players to be named later (PTBNL).

Alderson released this statement:

“We thank Frankie for his contributions to the Mets and wish him well with the Brewers,” Mets GM Sandy Alderson said in a statement. “This trade allows us to develop and more fully utilize other members of our 2011 bullpen and offers some payroll relief as well.”

Rodriguez, 29, is 2-2 with a 3.16 ERA and 23 saves this season with the Mets. He is in his 10th Major League season, posting a 32-27 record with a 2.54 ERA and 291 saves in 573 relief appearances with Los Angeles of Anaheim (2002-08) and New York (2009-11).

The four-time All-Star (2004, 2007-09) set the single-season save record with 62 in 2008 with the Angels.

Although none of the specifics of the deal are clear at the moment in regards to exactly how much cash or who the players are, the consensus thought seems to be K-Rod was expendable, and getting someone to take him was more important now while his option still has room to not vest.

K-Rod had an up and down career for the Mets, having a solid first season but with some key blown saves, a shortened second season due to the domestic violence and injuring his hand. K-Rod’s 2011 season was going fairly well, but he was being hit harder and walking more batters.

The biggest point that has been mentioned ad-nauseum was K-Rod and his possible vesting option. They have freed up 17.5 million from next years budget, and considering Sandy Anderson seems to be content on cutting the Mets payroll down to around 120 million, and resigning Reyes if Alderson pursues it will not be cheap.

More news when it becomes clearer.

To read the thoughts about K-Rod’s departure and other Mets news follow me on twitter @TheSeanKenny

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K-Rod Trade A Salary Dump To Keep Reyes, Phenomenal Move! Wed, 13 Jul 2011 12:30:45 +0000 Now that Francisco Rodriguez is off to Milwaukee, Sandy Alderson and the Mets have an extra $17.5 million off the books for next year. This trade is a great move by Alderson for just that very reason because now they can use that money for a more significant player, namely Jose Reyes.

With Reyes’ impending free-agency on the horizon, most baseball insiders said that Reyes as a Met past 2011 was becoming increasingly unlikely due to the Mets financial constraints. But now, the Mets have basically just freed up enough for the first year of his deal, putting the Mets right back as a top contender for Reyes come this winter.

I personally think trading K-Rod now borderline GUARENTEES the Amazin’s retaining their 28-year old shortstop. Which that alone is worth way more that K-Rod. Think of it as trading K-Rod’s services for the rest of 2011 and all of 2012 for Reyes’ for the next 5-7 years.   Would you rather be stuck with K-Rod for one year or have Reyes for years to come? I see that as an outstanding trade by Alderson. Never underestimate the value in the long run of a salary dump.

I noticed that the response to this trade was overwhelmingly negative on this site, but I don’t think those people are seeing the big picture here. Many were upset that the only return we got were 2 players to be named later, but that is not the point of making this trade. Regardless of the return on prospects that they get, if the Mets are able to retain Reyes, then they already are the winners in this deal, big time.

I applaud Alderson for this trade. It was something that needed to be done and should have been done. Would Omar have had the brains or the guts to do this? I don’t think so!

[blackbirdpie url="!/Buster_ESPN/status/91002015995543553"]


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Hardball: Boras Hints K-Rod Will Veto Any Trade Unless He Is Closer Mon, 11 Jul 2011 20:58:02 +0000 According to Brian Costa of the Wall Street Journal, and also confirmed by Adam Rubin of ESPN, Scott Boras has officially announced that he will be representing Mets closer Fracisco Rodriguez effective immediately.

Boras wasted no time in laying down the law and is ready to play some hardball. He strongly indicated that he will not accept any deal to team on K-Rod’s no-trade list if it means being setup man.

“This man is built to be a closer,” Boras said.

““We’re going to sit down and talk with the Mets and work this through,” Rodriguez’s new agent, Scott Boras, told the Journal at today’s media event for the All-Star game. “He’s a remarkable talent, so we’ll see in the present and in the future what they may want to do.”

Last week, two MLB GM’s called K-Rod’s vesting option “scary”, and any chance of the Mets finding a team that would have traded for K-Rod as a setup reliever to try and keep that option from vesting, just got a whole lot slimmer.  

Original Post

According to various reports, Scott Boras has added another Mets player to his stable as closer Francisco Rodriguez has dropped his agent Paul Kinzer and switched to Boras.

Kinzer was the agent who negotiated the current deal with the Mets that will be worth four years, $51 million assuming the closer finishes 55 games this season.

When asked to comment, Rodriguez repeatedly declined to do so saying, ”No. I said no. No comment.”

This move could affect the Mets they try to trade K-Rod to one of the 10 teams on his no-trade list. Boras is notorious for always securing an extension or some other additional compensation for a player in K-Rod’s situation.

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Mets Push K-Rod Trade To Yankees Sun, 10 Jul 2011 16:03:01 +0000 From the latest news on K-Rod according to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports,  apparently Sandy Alderson has put out more then a feeler for K-Rod, and the Yankees response wasn’t a rejection, but rather a “call us closer to the deadline” move. While they would be willing to pick up the salary of K-Rod, the Yankees would be expecting to get K-Rod for pennies on the dollar as a classic salary dump.

While this was to be expected in regards to what K-Rod would grant in return, the Mets may feel that Parnell/Beato could be ready to take over the ninth inning and the ability to clear out K-Rod’s option gives them much more freedom in the offseason to retool or keep players.

The largest reason for the trade isn’t K-Rod’s declining velocity or effectiveness, but more Sandy Alderson’s wish to drop the payroll roughly 20 million dollars. While this isn’t going from big-market to small-market, it is aimed at being more efficient with spending and limiting expensive contracts in hopes of being able to make a big splash when it presents itself.

For other Mets news, notes and thoughts, follow me on twitter @TheSeanKenny

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Mets Making K-Rod Available In Trade Talks Tue, 05 Jul 2011 14:04:45 +0000 Well Mets fans, it appears that the Mets have now engaged at least one team in trade talks.  Closer Francisco Rodriguez appears to be the Mets’ first trade chip to be actively shopped. 

According to Bob Klaspich of the Bergen Record, the Mets have talked to the Yankees about K-Rod. 

As expected, the Mets are going to at least see what they can get by putting K-Rod and possibly others out in the market, which is fairly understandable.

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Are Mets/White Sox Destined For Each Other? Thu, 14 Apr 2011 04:00:28 +0000 Let’s all be honest, we knew what this team was before the season even started. Not losing all faith yet, but the Mets may in fact be sellers at the deadline. Recently I was asked if the Mets would be sellers or buyers at the deadline, to which I responded buyers. However that was the optimistic side of me talking. Or maybe it was Sandy repeatedly saying comments like “We’re playing for 2011″. Either way the reality of the situation is the Mets may be big time sellers for the first time in awhile.

Who will be available? You can argue many names that will come up in discussions. Carlos Beltran? Francisco Rodriguez? Jose Reyes? (hope not). Even names like say Mike Pelfrey could generate discussions.

As I went over the possibilities for each player in both the AL and NL, one team always came to mind the most – Chicago White Sox.

Why? For one, the AL Central is up for grabs. The Tigers have great hitting, but questionable pitching with a deep, but unproven pen. The Twins have a lineup with potential, however Morneau’s health is a major concern. Their starting pitching is young and unproven, and their bullpen is questionable regarding Joe Nathan’s health. Therein lies the White Sox. Strong lineup, starting pitching is adequate, and bullpen lacks a true closer.

Could they have interest in K-Rod? Could he be the closer they so desperately seek? It gets deeper. Would they be interested in a Beltran/K-Rod for two prospects deal? Kenny Williams is sure crazy enough. And if Sandy realizes the Mets are out of it, with a position to build towards to future, I bet he does it. Yes, the White Sox farm system is bare. I’m strongly aware. But if you have a chance to recoup some decent prospects, move K-Rod’s option, and take some ease off the Wilpon’s checkbooks, I bet he does it.

Names that may be involved - Chris Sale, Gordon Beckham, Eduardo Escobar, Sergio Santos, Jared Mitchell all come to mind. Not so high on Escobar, but with the Reyes uncertainty it’s never bad to have organizational depth at SS.

Either way it’s interesting to think about upcoming scenarios such as these. LETS GO METS!

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MLBPA Serves Mets Notice On K-Rod Option Tue, 22 Feb 2011 17:47:20 +0000

While visiting Mets camp today, MLBPA Union Chief  Michael Weiner addressed the 2012 vesting option the Mets have on K-Rod’s contract.

K-Rod’s option vests at $17.5 million for 2012 if he finishes 55 games this season. Otherwise, he receives a $3.5 million buyout and becomes a free agent.

“We monitor every situation for compliance with the Basic Agreement,” Weiner said. “But I have every expectation that the Mets are going to honor both the Basic Agreement and Frankie’s contracts.”

As far as how much latitude a team has in not using a player when a vesting option is nearing, Weiner said:

“There’s arbitration precedent that deals with that, that essentially says that the club’s decisions for using a player have to be motivated by trying to win. There’s arbitration precedent that makes clear that a team cannot sit a player down or decline to use them in order to prevent him from earning a bonus or having a year vest. But again, I have every expectation that the Mets are going to fully honor the Basic Agreement.”

I don’t think any closer is worth $17.5 million dollars whether they are Mariano, Heath Bell, whatever.

Honestly, if K-Rod pitches like he is capable of and shows himself to be an elite top five closer, I won’t mind his option so much. Afterall, it’s our bed so now we have to sleep in it.

I also would add that if by chance, the Mets are winning and somehow find themselves in the thick of a pennant race, I couldn’t care less about that option and I would be PISSED OFF if there were any attempts made to minimize his appearances and save opportunities, especially if he’s pitching effectively and shutting down offenses.

Of course there is always the odd chance that if the Mets are out of it, perhaps a contender would be desperate enough to trade for an effective K-Rod and worry about the option when all is said and done. In that case it wouldn’t be our problem anymore.

The bottom line is, no matter what happens we need K-Rod to be healthy and pitching lights out for us this season. If that happens, the situation is not nearly as dire as it could potentially be.

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K-Rod Shows Up In A Hot Rod Thu, 17 Feb 2011 00:44:42 +0000

Is that a sweet set of wheels or what? Those Italians sure know how to make a sportscar.

Francisco Rodriguez spoke to reporters today and was as contrite and as apologetic as he could be. He took responsibility for his actions and said he learned a valuable lesson that will not be lost on him.

He is very grateful that he is still with the Mets, his thumb feels great, and he’s looking forward to helping the Mets have a great season in 2011.

I for one have already put his incident behind me and look forward to seeing the K-Rod we thought we were getting closing games for us this season. I completely understand those who are less forgiving than me, but he’s a big part of this team and all I want to do is win.

Photo credit to Ian O’Connor of ESPN New York

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10 Things To Watch For Heading Into Spring Training Tue, 15 Feb 2011 20:30:30 +0000 Spring training is less than two weeks ago.

Though the New York Mets offseason has been mired by a lack of finances and now the money schemes of the owners, there is still much to look forward to this upcoming season.

If a few things fall into place simultaneously, who knows what we will be saying about this team in a few months?

They have talent and now appear to finally have some leadership.

Here are the 10 biggest developments to keep your eye on during spring training for the Mets.

10. Can the Mets Put the Madoff Scandal behind Them?

Earlier this week, Commissioner Bud Selig met with the Mets brass to discuss the team’s finances. There have been rumors that the Mets would like to complete a partial sale of the team by June.

Now reports have surfaced that the only reason Sandy Alderson took the GM job was due to pressure by Selig. Selig saw Alderson as the savior of the Mets.

Regardless of this off-the-field drama, there is one way to take the attention off these matters: win baseball games.

The Madoff scandal may have hurt the team’s finances, but they still have pieces to compete.

9. What Should the Mets Do with Their Young Talent?

While the Mets did not have a prospect in the top-50, they still have some young pieces that can contribute on the Major League level.

It looks like Jenrry Mejia will be starting the season in the minors as well as Ruben Tejada.

The real question marks surround Lucas Duda and Nick Evans. Both saw some time late last season and hit pretty well.

The Mets brought in Scott Hairston and Willie Harris to compete for the final two bench spots, so the best course of action may be to allow Duda and Evans to play every day in Buffalo and be prepared if a major injury occurs to a starter.

Fernando Martinez needs to prove he can stay healthy before being considered for the big club.

8. How Will the Players Coming Off Injuries Rebound?

Carlos Beltran missed the entire first half last year and struggled big time at the plate when he returned.

Jason Bay was having a mediocre season at best until suffering a concussion by crashing into the outfield wall in Los Angeles.

Jose Reyes was limited early in the season due to a thyroid condition.

New acquisition Chris Young started only four games last year and just 36 over the last three seasons.

These are all talented players and huge keys to the Mets’ success this year. They need to stay healthy and contribute for the team to make some noise.

7. What Will Be Dillon Gee’s Role?

Spring training may determine what the Mets plan to do with Dillon Gee.

Gee showed some promise in five starts in September, going 2-2 with a sub-3.00 ERA.

All of a sudden, the Mets rotation went from empty to overcrowded. Chris Capuano has pitched out of the bullpen before, so if the Mets feel Gee is ready, he would slide into the fifth spot with Capuano assuming long reliever responsibilities.

Gee is a great insurance plan to have, but it seems that the Mets will start the season with a rotation consisting of Mike Pelfrey, R.A. Dickey, Jon Niese, Chris Young and Chris Capuano.

6. How Will the Team Respond To No Johan Santana?

Santana had elbow surgery and hasn’t even begun throwing. Optimistically, he should rejoin the Mets after the All-Star break.

Though he is aging, he is still a bona fide ace in this league and leaves a huge hole atop of the Mets rotation.

Mike Pelfrey will attempt to fill that void, but it will have to be a group effort by all the starters.

One pitcher cannot pick up the slack of a Santana-type ace, so everyone will have to carry their weight.

5. What Will the Bullpen Look Like?

If you thought the Mets had a ton of options for the starting rotation, there are even more for the bullpen.

In no particular order, Bobby Parnell, Francisco Rodriguez, D.J. Carrasco, Taylor Buchholz, Taylor Tankersley, Tim Byrdak, Blaine Boyer, Manny Acosta, Pedro Beato, Pat Misch, Boof Bonser, Ryota Igarashi and (dare I say) Oliver Perez will be competing for seven spots.

That might only be six spots depending on the Dillon Gee/Chris Capuano situation.

Parnell, Rodriguez and Carrasco are guaranteed spots. Buchholz and Byrdak appear to be early favorites, but everything else is a crapshoot.

Spring training will determine who heads north.

4. How Will the Team Accept K-Rod?

As of now, K-Rod isn’t even on the 40-man roster, but he will have to be activated after spring training.

He claims to be healthy and ready to get back in action.

His season was cut short last year by that ugly incident, so it will be interesting to see how his teammates and the fans respond to him.

Everyone deserves a second chance. He was having a good season before the fight, so he hopefully has a little something left in the tank entering his contract year.

Based on the roster, the Mets will likely be involved in many close games, so it is imperative to have a strong closer for late in the game.

3. Who Will Play Center Field?

Angel Pagan “spread his wings” last year to the tune of a .290 BA and 37 SB. More importantly, he played a stellar center field defense for the first half of the season.

When incumbent Carlos Beltran returned, he immediately assumed center field duties despite his injured knee.

Pagan shifted to right for the remainder of the year.

If Beltran is healthy and shows he still has some mobility, it is his job to lose. Pagan has more experience in right, not only after last season, but also since he has been a fourth outfielder most of his career.

Terry Collins has said that he wants this dilemma solved early on during spring training so the two players can get comfortable in their respective positions.

2. Who Will Start at Second Base?

The Mets have plenty of in-house candidates to take over the second base position.

Luis Castillo is still around, and it looks like the Mets will be 100 percent sure he cannot play the position before handing it over.

Castillo has been in a steady physical decline during his entire tenure with the Mets. He did hit .302 in 2009, but he regressed so much last year that it seems the Mets are ready to go in a different direction.

Daniel Murphy looks like the favorite. He did not play last year due to an injury he suffered while playing second base. He has the bat, so if his defense can come around, he is a sound option.

Rule-5 pick Brad Emaus and Justin Turner will also get a look for the spot or even the utility infielder’s role.

1. How Will the Team Respond to Terry Collins?

Terry Collins joins the long list of men to take the helm of the New York Mets.

Many of the younger players are familiar with him since Collins served as a Minor League instructor last season.

He is known for his passion and intensity which can really wake up some of these Mets players in need of a jolt.

He doesn’t appear afraid to approach a player to get his point across.

While the games don’t count in spring training, it will be important for Collins to rattle off a few wins to build his team’s confidence.

Some analysts think that a change of regime was exactly what the Mets needed to turn things around.

The new regime is there, so let’s see how the team responds in spring training.

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Should Mets Swap K-Rod For Papelbon? Fri, 19 Nov 2010 18:23:03 +0000

Matt Cerrone of MetsBlog believes that there is enough of a framework based on circulating rumors, that the Mets and Red Sox should and could connect on a potential deal.

Last week, Alex Speier, who covers the Red Sox for WEEI Sports, said the Mets would “certainly entertain” offers for Carlos Beltran.

Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald also mentioned that he expects the Red Sox to look at Beltran, as well as Dodgers OF Matt Kemp and Rays OF B.J. Upton, in addition to exploring the free agent market for an outfielder.

According to Ken Rosenthal of, American League teams in search of an OF-DH, like the Rangers and White Sox, could also have interest in Beltran.

However, he adds, “To trade Beltran, the Mets would need to assume a significant portion of his $18.5 million salary for 2011.”

Similarly, as the Red Sox shop Jonathan Papelbon, Jon Heyman of says they will need to pay a portion of his expected arbitration money in order to deal him, which might be why his market is very weak right now.

According to Sean McAdam of CSNNE, Papelbon will be seeking $11.5 million in arbitration, for what will be his final year under contract before becoming a free agent.

Last week, while on WFAN, Heyman said, though the Red Sox like Beltran, he does not believe they will be interested in swapping him for Papelbon.

I agree that there are a lot of common bonds that could make both teams a fairly good match.

I’d suggest looking at a deal that could involve swapping closers Francisco Rodriguez and Jon Papelbon. Both could use a change of scenery and both are still elite closers. The Mets would gladly throw in the $3 million they saved on Rodriguez 2010 salary into the deal to even the dollar amounts.

As for Carlos Beltran, it will take more than just kicking in a huge part of what he’s owed for the Mets to deal him. The complications make it unlikely he’ll be dealt in my opinion.

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Mets Fire Charlie Samuels For Violating Team Policies Fri, 12 Nov 2010 23:45:19 +0000

The Mets just announced that equiptment manager Charlie Samuels has been fired for violating club policies.

“The New York Mets announced today that they have terminated Charlie Samuels’ employment with the Mets for conduct in violation of club policies.  This decision is the result of a thorough internal investigation over the course of several months.  The Mets will have no further comment on this matter.”

Updated 11/5 11:00 PM

This is starting to feel like an episode of the Sopranos. You won’t believe what the Daily News is reporting now. Apparently, KRod was holed up at Charlie’s place after he beat his girlfriend’s father and was ordered to stay away from his home. Also, Jeff Francoeur may not have been able to draw a walk, but nobody could accuse him of not being a great tipper. Anyway, read on:

According to law enforcement sources close to the probe being conducted by the Queens DA’s office and the NYPD’s Organized Crime and Control Bureau, the probe has revealed that Samuels:

* Received a $50,000 tip from outfielder Jeff Francoeur before Francoeur left the Mets for the World Series-bound Rangers earlier this season;

* Provided Francisco Rodriguez with a place to stay in his home after the closer was ordered by a Queens judge to stay away from his common-law wife following an altercation with her father at Citi Field in August.

* Once received a new Lexus from Mike Piazza, whose father had lost a bet to Samuels on how much weight the elder Piazza could lose.

So far the probe is centering on Samuels, who was also the Mets’ traveling secretary, but his relationships with players, including stars Johan Santana, Rodriguez and David Wright, are bound to raise questions about how deep the investigation will go. The sources, however, said K-Rod is not a part of the probe and that there is “no evidence so far that K-Rod did anything wrong, no gambling or anything else.”

Updated 11/5 2:00 PM

According to ESPN New York, Charlie Samuels has admitted to MLB officials that he indeed bet on baseball.

New York Mets clubhouse manager Charlie Samuels admitted betting on baseball, according to a person familiar with the investigation.

Samuels made the admission to an investigator for Major League Baseball in the last few weeks, the person said Friday, speaking on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

Also, the Daily News adds some additional discouraging information:

The associates were caught in photographs in $400 comped seats to Mets games provided by Samuels, according to the sources.

Mets spokesman Jay Horwitz declined comment when asked about the allegations Friday.

The News also reported that Samuels is suspected of using his access to Mets accounts to cover his gambling debts and of selling bats, balls and jerseys, signed by the players, without authorization from the club.

It keeps changing for the worse as more information leaks out.

Updated 11/4 11:00 PM

The Daily News updates what was previously reported regarding the suspension of Charlie Samuels.

Mets’ clubhouse manager Charlie Samuels has been linked to an NYPD investigation into illegal gambling, law enforcement sources familiar with the probe confirmed to the Daily News on Thursday, leading club officials to suspend the longtime employee on Oct. 27.

The investigation is being conducted by the NYPD out of Queens District Attorney Richard Brown’s office, according to the sources familiar with the investigation, and is expected to result in arrests within the next two weeks.

Samuels hired Kirk Radomski, the convicted steroids dealer who acknowledged providing PEDs to many major leaguers in baseball’s Mitchell Report, to be a Mets clubhouse attendant in 1987. Radomski worked for the Mets until 1994. A source told The News that Samuels’ suspension was not tied to any performance-enhancing drug distribution or usage.

Original Post 2:00 PM

This one is out of left field. From Adam Rubin:

Longtime Mets equipment/clubhouse manager Charlie Samuels has been suspended by the organization, the Mets confirmed. 

The organization offered no elaboration beyond the following statement: “Last Wednesday, the Mets suspended Charlie Samuels indefinitely without pay. As this is an ongoing personnel matter, we have no further comment.” 

Samuels has been the team’s equipment manager for 27 seasons. He succeeded the late Herb Norman, the original equipment manager as an expansion team, after the 1983 season after spending four years as an assistant.

Initially, a few beat writers thought he may have been fired, but the Mets released a statement calling it an “indefinite suspension.”

Wow, that’s kind of shocking to me.

Samuels has been with the team well over 20 years. I can’t help, but wonder what they mean by “personnel matter”.

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K-Rod Closing In On A Plea Deal Wed, 10 Nov 2010 17:40:04 +0000 Latest Update form ESPN:

Attorneys and prosecutors continue to work on a plea bargain in the case of New York Mets reliever Francisco Rodriguez, who is charged with third-degree assault, second-degree harassment and criminal contempt.

Rodriguez would not comment Wednesday morning after appearing briefly in Queens Criminal Court. After the hearing, Judge Elisa Koenderman adjourned the case until Dec. 3, mentioning Rodriguez’s next court appearance as “a possible disposition or trial date.”

But Christopher Booth, Rodriguez’s attorney, is confident the case will be disposed of. “This is not going to go to trial,” he said Wednesday.

Original Post

Adam Rubin of ESPN  tells us that Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez has a court date scheduled for today at 9:30 AM at Queens Criminal Court.

Rodriguez’s defense attorney, Christopher Booth, had indicated at last month’s hearing that a plea bargain likely could be in place by this scheduled courthouse visit.

Rodriguez already has settled his grievance with the Mets. He forgoed the $3.1 million the Mets’ withheld in 2010 pay and was reinstated from the disqualified list.

Rubin also reminds us that Rodriguez is set to earn $11.5 million next season, in the final guaranteed year of his contract. The contract will vest for 2012 if he finishes 55 games. Otherwise, he is entitled to a $3.5 million buyout — essentially making his 2011 salary $15 million.

There has been some speculation the Mets could try and move Rodriguez, and one Angels beat reporter suggested a possible return to Anaheim, but the odds are K-Rod will still be on the team come opening day.

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Will Angels Be Interested In Re-Acquiring K-Rod? Mon, 08 Nov 2010 16:29:29 +0000 It’s an interesting question and one posed by Randy Youngman, a columnist for the Ocean County Register.

The New York Mets are open to trading closer Francisco Rodriguez, who is entering the final year of a three-year, $37 million contract that will pay him $11.5 million in 2011.

Would the Angels be interested in re-acquiring K-Rod? Possibly, if his legal problems related to an altercation with his father-in-law are resolved this winter.

The Angels don’t have a proven closer after trading Brian Fuentes and watching Fernando Rodney struggle with his command in his late-season trial as bullpen stopper. So if the team doesn’t believe power arms Kevin Jepsen and Jordan Walden are ready for the role, why not make a play for K-Rod?

I would have to believe that if this opportunity presented itself to Sandy Alderson, he would surely pave the way  for Francisco Rodriguez to return to Anaheim.

There are certainly many obstacles of course. In addition to his legal problems, there is the matter of his $13 million dollar salary this season, and more importantly his 2012 option for $18 million dollars that vests after 55 appearances, an easily obtainable figure if he remains healthy for an entire season.

Still, anything can happen once the two sides can begin talking. There is no doubt that if the Angels can get K-Rod for about $9 million this season, it would represent a great value for them based on what top closers get in today’s market place. That would mean the Mets paying about $4 million of his salary, and it may not be a bad idea.

Moving K-Rod would cetainly clear up some payroll and give Alderson some much needed flexibility, even if he were to assume a large chunk of his salary. Fingers crossed.

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