The Mets And Bargain Hunting

Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe writes that with the holiday break now over, the “second season’’ of the Hot Stove is about to begin. He lists the Mets among some teams who might benefit from bargain basement players or January trades.

Since they couldn’t enter into the primary market because of budget constraints , the Mets have to rebuild their pitching with the secondary market. They’ll have to take chances and hope to get lucky. Jeff Francis, Bruce Chen, Brian Burres, Kevin Millwood, Brad Penny, Freddy Garcia, and Jeremy Bonderman — OK, none of them are great — are all out there as possible rotation pieces. Don’t expect the Phillies to deal Joe Blanton within the division.

During the last day of the Winter Meetings last month, Sandy Alderson said in a couple of interviews that he would probably wait until January before addressing some of the team’s needs including starting pitching.

Jon Heyman of, still includes the Mets among teams with interest in free agent lefty reliever Brian Fuentes, although he wouldn’t exactly be considered a bargain based on what his asking price is.

That said, Adam Rubin of ESPN New York writes that the remaining left-handed relievers on the free-agent market include: Joe Beimel, Tim Byrdak, Hideki Okajima, Will Ohman, Dennys Reyes, Ron Mahay and Randy Flores.  The Mets have had interest in Beimel and Ohman in past offseasons.

Happy Birthday to former Mets pitcher, David Cone.