Last summer, Jacob deGrom‘s then agent Brodie Van Wagenen said if the Mets failed to provide the team’s ace with a contract extension the organization should consider trading him because “[t]he inertia of the current situation could complicate Jacob’s relationship with the club and creates an atmosphere of indecision.”
Van Wagenen is now the Mets General Manager. Still, with pitchers and catchers reporting to Spring Training in a matter of days, deGrom has yet to receive his extension. According to a recent report from Joel Sherman of the New York Post, deGrom’s camp is “disappointed” substantive discussions have not occurred this year.
On sports talk radio, both The Michael Kay Show and Mike Francesca came out staunchly against the idea of giving deGrom an extension. As a result, it seemed both shows had no issues with the “inertia of the current situation.”
The question now in front of the Mets is should they keep with the status quo, or should they go out and try to lock up deGrom now. Our writers tackle that question in the latest MMO Roundtable:
Joe D. – Disasterous If They Didn’t
I know via a source that Sandy Alderson did reach out to Jacob deGrom for a potential extension deal in the Spring of 2017. The stumbling block was actually Brodie Van Wagenen who was apparently looking for a 6-7 year deal. The Mets balked, justifiably so, because DeGrom was still under team control through 2020. They instead chose to go to Arbitration and from a business point of view, the Mets ended up getting some serious bang for the buck.
Now, two years later, the tables have turned and now it’s on Brodie to get a deal done.
After back to back tremendous seasons and a Cy Young Award in 2018, Jacob deGrom is arguably the best pitcher in baseball with no signs of slowing down.
If the Mets were to make the critical mistake of allowing deGrom to become a free agent after next season, it would prove disastrous for the organization in more ways than one. Can you imagine the outcry and blowback if deGrom ended up in the Bronx or worse yet, the Phillies, Nationals or Braves?
Sadly, I do not sense any urgency on getting an extension deal done, and it would be hypocritical if BVW were to drop the ball on this after his months-long rallying cries of winning a championship. Actions speak louder than words.
Marissa Credle – Performance Speaks for Itself
Yes, the Mets should extend deGrom now. His performance speaks for itself. He’s proven that he is one of the best pitchers in baseball right now and those don’t grow on trees. Outside that, he’s probably the fan favorite on the team right now too.
John Edwards – Time Is Now
I think that now is the time for any MLB team to call up their superstar players and talk about an extension. The lackluster free agent market is creating a great deal of uncertainty among players, scaring guys like Whit Merrifield into taking team friendly extensions. The time is most beneficial for the Mets to extend deGrom, given that his price for an extension might not get any lower.
Jack Hendon – Preserve the Talent Here
I don’t really see how this organization can part with top prospects, sign three free agents, and throw down the gauntlet with a “come get us” battle cry without also committing to a long-term extension with deGrom. As his career currently stands, he’s perhaps the most consistent dominating pitcher the franchise has seen since Dwight Gooden. What’s more, any player that is set to make a remote payday ahead of the 2019 season is going to take the offer they’re given. That is to say deGrom’s actual market value is at a low that the Mets would be wise to take advantage of while he still wears their uniform. Dropping the ball on an extension while the window is still open would render every free agent signing null and void. Acquiring talent means very little if you can’t preserve it.
Mojo Hill – Don’t Get Crazy
While they should undoubtedly be trying to extend deGrom, they shouldn’t get too crazy with it. DeGrom is already 30 and will be 32 when his current contract is up. Sign him for a few more of what should be his good years, say from age 32-35, but don’t go too far past that because you don’t want to end up overpaying a pitcher when that money could be going to fill other, more immediate holes. With contracts like Jed Lowrie, Wilson Ramos, Noah Syndergaard, Michael Conforto, and Todd Frazier coming off the board between 2021 and 2022, the Mets are going to need the freedom to spend to replace (or re-sign) these players and remain competitive. So while I do support a deGrom extension, I don’t want the Mets to get too crazy with it.
Matt Mancuso – Not A Long Term Risk
Jacob deGrom is everything you want as a future leader going forward. He’s electric, he’s humble, and he’s befuddled National League hitters for the entirety of his career. Coming off a historical 2018 season that saw him win the NL Cy Young Award, deGrom has emerged as one of the best, if not the best, pitcher in baseball. Since he’s not exactly young, a DeGrom extension shouldn’t exactly be a long-term risk. When he was first hired, Brodie Van Wagenen said “We will win now and… in the future.” What better way to do that than lock up the best pitcher in baseball for the next several years?
Andrew Percoco – Too Old
I’m all for signing him long term but he is a lot older. Look at Clayton Kershaw. He has 2 years BEFORE free agency. Perhaps a four year deal, but no more? What if he breaks down at 33 or 34? Why should the Mets do that? With all the ineffective years free agency have especially at those ages, or injury stunts, I wouldn’t go extremely long. Johan Santana didn’t pan out, Pedro Martinez didn’t pan out, and that’s just as two examples.
Rob Piersall – Face of Franchise
If there is anyone who deserves a contract extension, it’s Jacob deGrom. Despite a dismal season from the Mets overall, deGrom gave fans a sense of pride and joy every fifth day where he would go out and absolutely dominate. The guy has star power, a Cy Young under his belt, and he’s who I want out there on the mound against anyone in the game. I realize deGrom is a bit older, but he takes care of himself and his arm, and I think he is going to be effective into his mid-to-late 30’s.
DeGrom is the face of the franchise now that David Wright is a member of the front office. He’s a guy to anchor the squad and someone who will show who the Mets really are. Break out the checkbooks.
Jack Ramsey – Perfect Fit
One can argue that they should’ve done this last off-season, but the time is now for the Mets to extend Jacob deGrom. The relationship between the ace and the club has been smooth sailing, aside from one blip last summer. With a strong personal connection to current general manager Brodie Van Wagenen and being the ace on a team that seems poised to compete into October, deGrom seems like a perfect fit on the Mets. Monetarily, deGrom push for a contract nearing $30 million a year, but following a historic 2018 it will be well deserved.
Tim Ryder – No Doubt
Yes, without a doubt. This is a franchise cornerstone with a NL Cy Young Award, a superb track record, and a very bright future ahead of him. Let him name his price and whatever he wants, give it to him.
Dilip Sridhar – Make Him A Met for Life
The Mets should absolutely be engaging deGrom in an extension. He is worth a lot on the free agency market and the Mets have the luxury of having exclusive negotiating rights with him. He won’t come cheap like he may have a few years back but he still won’t get anywhere what he’s worth on the free agent market. Sign him and make him a Met for life. He wants to be one.
John Sheridan – Only If You’re Serious About Winning
Personally, I think deGrom should do everything he can do to get that contract extension even if it means holding out. And in a perfect world, I think the Mets should be locking him up now. However, I also believe the Mets should be signing at least one of Bryce Harper and Manny Machado.
The Mets need to decide if they really want more than a two year window. That doesn’t just mean signing deGrom. It also means signing players like Conforto and Syndergaard to extensions. It means stop trading away three solid prospects for J.D. Davis when you can get a similar/better talent on the free agent market.
You want to win? Great. There are a legion of Mets fans behind you. But if not, play out the 2019 season and then move deGrom to a team who will appreciate him to the tune of a load of prospects to get the Mets closer to their next window of contention.
Perhaps it should come as no surprise our writers are mostly in favor of signing deGrom to an extension? Do you agree? We look forward to continuing this discussion in the comments section.