New York Mets Winter Meetings Guide and Planner

Photo: Mets.com

With the Winter Meetings only a day away, here is everything you need to know as the New York Mets continue to build their 2019 Opening Day roster.

This Mets Winter Meetings Planner includes: Payroll Projections and Commitments, Arbitration Eligible Players with Projections, Rule 5 Report, Mets Offseason Needs, Latest Buzz, and Important Dates.

Guaranteed Contracts ($81.8 million)

Yoenis Cespedes – $29 million

Robinson Cano – $24 million ($19 million net)

David Wright – $15 million ($7.8 million net)

Juan Lagares – $9 million

Todd Frazier – $9 million

Jason Vargas – $8 million

The Mets have $89 million tied up on these six players. The Mets received $20 million from the Mariners toward the $120 million Robinson Cano is owed over the next five seasons. The $20 million is spread out as follows: $5 million in 2019 and then $3.75 million over the final four years. So the amount the Mets are liable for in 2019 is $19 million.

Additionally, the Mets are expected to recoup $7.2 million from the insurance policy on David Wright’s contract. That brings the amount the Mets are liable for to $7.8 million.

Player Options ($2.5 million)

Jason Vargas – $2 million

Juan Lagares – $500,000

The Mets are also liable for two 2020 player options in 2019.

Projected Arbitration ($36.5 million)

Jacob deGrom – $12.9 million ($7.4 million)

Noah Syndergaard – $5.9 million ($2.975 million)

Zack Wheeler – $5.3 million ($1.9 million)

Michael Conforto – $4.4 million ($605,000)

Travis d’Arnaud – $3.7 million ($3.475 million)

Steven Matz – $3.0 million ($577,000)

Kevin Plawecki – $1.3 million ($557,000)

The number in parenthesis represents each player’s 2018 salary while the first number is the projected salary for the 2019 season by MLB Trade Rumors. In 2018 these seven players earned $17.49 million dollars. That number is projected to climb to $36.5 million.

The most significant increases went to Michael Conforto, Zack Wheeler and Jacob deGrom who will get a $5.5 million raise after his Cy Young Award winning season.

Pre-Arbitration Contracts ($7.2 million)

Brandon Nimmo

Amed Rosario

Jeff McNeil

T.J. Rivera

Robert Gsellman

Edwin Diaz

Seth Lugo

The Mets pre-arbitration players have non-guaranteed contracts are tabulated at an arbitrary $600,000 each for a total of  $7.2 million on 12 players to fill out the 25 man roster.

Total Current Payroll – $128 million

This includes total guaranteed contracts, projected arbitration, pre -arbitration players, and adjustments for player options and insurance payments.

Last year, Mets payroll came in at roughly $150 million and it is expected to be at least that much for the 2019 season although there has been no official indication by the front office or ownership. At that level it places the Mets in the middle of the pack among all MLB teams and not quite the payroll budget you would expect from a big market team.

The 2018 Baseball Winter Meetings will be held Dec. 9-13, at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

On Sunday, the National Baseball Hall of Fame Eras Committee gathers at the Winter Meetings to discuss and vote on this year’s ballot. featuring Harold Baines, Albert Belle, Joe Carter, Will Clark, Orel Hershiser, Davey Johnson, Charlie Manuel, Lou Piniella, Lee Smith and George Steinbrenner. The results will be announced at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday on MLB Network.

Rule 5 Draft

The Rule 5 Draft takes place on Thursday, the final day of the Winter Meetings. Minor league players who are not on the 40-man roster are all eligible to be selected by a new team. If a team selects a player, they must keep that player on their 25-man roster for the entire season or be forced to offer him back to the team he was selected from.

Michael Mayer posted a list of potential players the Mets could target in the Rule 5 Draft to be held on Thursday. Some of those players include RHP Trevor Megill, OF Marcus Wilson, and SS Richie Martin. Check out the full list here.

Similarly, Jacob Resnick compiled a full list of all the Mets prospects and minor leaguers who were left unprotected from the 40 man roster, and are therefore vulnerable and available to be selected by another team. A few of those players are C Patrick Mazeika, RHP Corey Taylor, and SS Luis Carpio. You can read the full list here.

Mets Offseason Needs

Despite adding an elite closer in Edwin Diaz, the Mets still need at least two more solid arms in their bullpen including a setup man. Andrew Miller, Zach Britton, David Robertson and Adam Ottavino are some of names the Mets could be looking at.

A right-handed bat with power is also on their wish list to fill the outfield vacancy that opened up after trading Jay Bruce to the Mariners. The Mets have reportedly checked in on free agents Marwin Gonzalez and A.J. Pollock. There is also some buzz centering on Yasiel Puig who is reportedly being shopped by the Dodgers. Nick Markakis and Andrew McCutchen could also be options.

Despite tendering a contract to Travis d’Arnaud, the Mets are reportedly looking to significantly upgrade their catching position. One big name that keeps coming up is Marlins All Star J.T. Realmuto, but he won’t come cheap. Other options include free agents Wilson Ramos and Yasmani Grandal.

Latest Mets Buzz

With the Cleveland Indians extremely motivated to move either Corey Kluber or Trevor Bauer, the Mets seem to be very interested according to several reports. According to Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, the Mets have already spoken to the Indians about a trade for Kluber. The two-time Cy Young winner is under team control for three more seasons and posted a 2.89 ERA and 0.99 WHIP this past season with 222 strikeouts in 215 innings pitched.

Important Dates

Dec 9- 13, 2018: The MLB Winter Meetings will take place in Las Vegas, Nev.

Dec 13, 2018: The Rule 5 draft will take place on the final day of the Winter Meetings, starting at 9:00 a.m. Eastern.

Jan 11, 2019: Clubs and arbitration-eligible players must exchange salary figures.

Jan 22, 2019: The Baseball Hall of Fame announces the balloting results for the HOF Class of 2019.

Feb 1, 2019: Arbitration hearings begin for those eligible players who do not come to terms with their clubs before their hearing date.

Feb 14, 2019: Mets pitchers and catchers report to spring training in Port St. Lucie.

Feb 23, 2019: Mets open their Grapefruit League season against the Atlanta Braves at First Data Field in Port St. Lucie.

Mar 28, 2019: The Mets open their season when they visit the Washington Nationals for a three-game series at Nationals Park.

Apr 4, 2019: The Mets host the Washington Nationals for their home opener at Citi Field.

MMO Has You Covered

You can count on Metsmerized Online to keep you up to date on all the Mets news, rumors and happenings from Mandalay Bay Resorts and Casino in Las Vegas. Executive Editor Michael Mayer will be covering the Winter Meetings for MMO, and he’ll be passing along any and all team news and will file a daily summary each night.

As always, we won’t post any rumors on MMO unless it passes the sniff test and comes from a credible source. We’ll be working around the clock both day and night to ensure that you won’t miss a beat. You can also follow all the action on our Twitter feed @Metsmerized and our Facebook Page.

Thanks so much for all of your incredible support. Please let us know what we can do to make your experience at Metsmerized Online a better one. And as always, Let’s Go Mets!

About Joe D 8013 Articles
I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73, '00 and '15, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.