Winter Meetings Preview: What to Expect (with *Some* Bold Predictions)

On Monday all 30 GMs, along with a handful of players, agents, and other baseball folks, will all come together in R.A. Dickey’s hometown of Nashville, TN for the Winter Meetings. Personally, this is one of my favorite weeks in all of baseball. This is when the Hot Stove really gets cooking, so all you crabby Mets fans who keep complaining the front office isn’t doing anything can stop whining now (if the David Wright extension wasn’t enough for you), because the Mets will most likely make at least one move to get their roster ready for the 2013 season.  Here are some events that may occur in the coming days:

The R.A. Dickey Situation Will Be Resolved

Whether he is re-signed or traded, I am almost positive that we will all know the fate of R.A. Dickey and his tenure with the Mets within the coming days. There are rumors that his people and the Mets will be meeting early on during the Winter Meetings, during which I assume they will talk about where to find the best steakhouses in Nashville. Oh yeah, and that whole contract thing.

Trading the reigning Cy Young Award winner just doesn’t make sense if they aren’t going to receive an overwhelming package for him, which all reports indicate won’t happen. Neither side is far off from each other in terms of what they want for a contract extension, so all signs point toward a deal getting done.

Adam’s prediction: The Mets and R.A. Dickey agree on a 3-year, $30 million contract extension (including his 2013 option).

Jonathon Niese Will Be Shopped

If the Mets end up re-signing Dickey, then that leads me to believe Niese will be the guy they look to trade for a bat or two. The question is, will they be able to get enough? The Kansas City Royals are looking to acquire another starting pitcher, but have said to be unwilling to part with Alex Gordon or top prospect Wil Myers. We know Toronto and Boston have a bunch of guys the Mets could use, but unless they add significant pieces to the deal there’s no way Niese should be traded for them (more on this in a bit). There’s always the possibility of a team getting an urge to make a deal and overpaying, but I would not bet on that happening. And when looking at the return the Braves got for Tommy Hanson, it does not appear the market has much more to give for a pitcher of Niese’s caliber.

Adam’s prediction: Niese will not be traded.

The Mets need an outfielder who hits for power and bats right-handed. Oh, hey Ryan Ludwick!

An Outfielder Will Be Signed

Here is a list of some free agent outfielders I think the Mets could realistically afford:

Jason Bay – lol jkEndy Chavez

Ben Francisco

Kosuke Fukodome

Reed Johnson

Andruw Jones

Don Kelly

Ryan Ludwick

Nate McClouth

Nyjer Morgan

Xavier Nady

Ryan Raburn

Nate Schierholtz

Ryan Sweeney

Shane Victorino

Delmon Young

Excuse me while I throw up in my mouth looking at that list.

All kidding aside, there is one name I wouldn’t mind seeing the Mets bring in: Ryan Ludwick.

It’s evident the Mets need power, and Ludwick did hit 28 home runs for the Cincinnati Reds in 2011. Oh, and he bats right-handed, which is also something the Mets are in desperate need of. Buyer beware though, as Great American Ballpark is a notoriously hitter-friendly ballpark. On top of that, Ludwick’s previous two seasons saw him hit only 30 home runs combined in time with St. Louis, San Diego, and Pittsburgh. That being said, sometimes you have to take bold chances in order to be successful. And a one year deal for a guy with big power potential is a chance worth taking.

Adam’s prediction: The Mets sign Ryan Ludwick to a 1-year, $6 million contract.

A Trade Will Be Made

Most notably, a trade for a catcher. With that in mind, let’s go back to Boston and Toronto. They have a couple guys I’ve recently talked about, and for some reason I just keep coming back to them when it comes to finding a catcher for this team. Maybe it’s because I feel they can be had for a cheaper price than what has been suggested and the Mets have the pieces. I’m probably dead wrong on this but whatever, it’s my post so I’m going with it.

Adam’s prediction: The Mets trade Lucas Duda, Jenrry Mejia and Matt Den Dekker to the Boston Red Sox for Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Daniel Nava.

If I turn out to be the new Nostradamus and all of my predictions come true this coming week, then the Mets will have built themselves a pretty decent team for 2013. Also, I will immediately send this post to all 30 MLB front offices and tell them to hire me on the spot.

More likely, however, I’ll be wrong on my latter two predictions. But I do hope I’m right with my first two, as I would like to see both Dickey and Niese return. Regardless, it should be a fun week for all baseball fans. Enjoy!