Blog Entry

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

Posted on: December 29, 2009 4:35 pm
Edited on: December 29, 2009 5:21 pm

Whether he wants to or not, slugging outfielder Jason Bay is on the verge of becoming a New York Met. Bay and the club have agreed to terms on a four-year contract worth $66 million, has confirmed, with a fifth-year option that could boost the package into the $80 million neighborhood.

The deal is pending Bay passing a physical examination and, as such, the Mets are not confirming that an agreement is in place.

Barring any surprises with Bay's physical, the move will accomplishes one of the Mets' chief offseason goals, which was adding a slugger who will man left field and make manger Jerry Manuel's lineup more dangerous. It also should silence critics who were chattering that the Mets' dalliance with Bay was "just for show", a transparent attempt to placate their fans while making an offer they knew Bay would not accept.

In the end, they got it done.

Now, regarding the "wants to" part: The Mets made their initial offer to Bay coming out of the winter meetings in Indianapolis some three weeks ago and have been waiting for an answer ever since. Speculation, of course, has been strong in some quarters that Bay must not have wanted to become a Met very badly because, if he did, talks between him and the club wouldn't have dragged along for so long.

But in a chilly winter on the free agent market in which Boston cut bait with Bay and signed outfielder Mike Cameron, and Seattle, San Francisco and the Yankees -- all clubs looking for a big, middle-of-the-order bat -- Bay's options pretty much dwindled to just one. And that one was located with a Queens ZIP code.

However Bay was delivered -- and there's a lot of dollars here to sooth any disappointment the Canada native might have felt when Seattle didn't step up, or when Boston pulled its offer -- there is no doubt that it's a victory for the Mets.

It's not a guaranteed victory, because we've been through this before with them: They traded for Johan Santana two winters ago and signed free agent closers Francisco Rodriguez and J.J. Putz last winter and failed to make the playoffs both years. Much to their fans chagrin, the Mets have proven in recent years that they're a different breed and often add up to less than the sum of their parts would appear.

But they have needs to fill as the time since their last playoff appearance (2006) lengthens and the back-to-back NL champion -- and Mets' NL East rival -- Philadelphia Phillies (who already have traded for Roy Halladay and signed Placido Polanco this winter) continue to swing for the fences.

Though he's now 31, considered a mediocre outfielder and batted just .267 for the Red Sox last summer, he also walloped 36 home runs and finished with 119 RBI.

With a healthy Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran (it's never too late to start knocking on wood in advance of opening day with them) and with slugging third baseman David Wright, Bay will give the Mets another presence that should make life difficult for opposing pitchers.

But their job is not finished. They still need a catcher -- free agent Bengie Molina remains the most logical bet -- and pitching (bullpen help, especially).

With the Mets, the job is never finished. But with Bay poised to change his workplace address to Citi Field, ever so cautiously, there again is hope.


Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: December 30, 2009 11:38 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

Thanks Jason, Have fun never making the playoffs....
EAsy there disco guy.  The Redsox went so long without winning the World Series they made a successful movie out of it.  Don't be so cocky after a few years of some success.

The Mets have just as good a chance as anybody else and Jason Bay is a great pickup.  Anytime you can add a player of that caliber to your team without having to trade anybody to get him you can't go wrong.

Great move by the Mets... regardless of all the jealous crybabies on these boards.  Not even ONE of you people would have been upset if your  team signed Jason Bay... not one.

Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: December 30, 2009 10:43 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

b2tall you sure have alot to say....Bay had zero errors, so he will make the plays he gets to and as far as covering ground, he wont be great at that but having one of the best defensive CF's in Beltran next to you, well thats a plus. He wont be dropping or miss-playing balls like Murphy did early last year and of course a phillies fan is gonna say bad things about Mets players, but Reyes, Wright and Beltran are ALL-STAR players, the things you said B2 are foolish. they are ALL-STARS, i think every smart baseball fan can see that.
saying Beltran isnt clutch is one of the dumbest statments i have read here. If you wanna say that, show me some facts. He's been a great Met since coming here, well after his first year lol. and i could careless what Reyes does off the field or any of the other stuff, he LOVES to play the game and is always smiling and if you dont think he is a top player, you are blind. Reyes is a great player no question about it.
offense wont be a problem, the Mets problem is starting pitching, thats it.

Since: Dec 30, 2009
Posted on: December 30, 2009 10:37 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

You were doing fine till you started with Luis castillo. Let's see he had 40 rbi's last year which ranked him 17th in the NL, behind David eckstein, Kaz Matsui, (remember him,) Martin Prado on and on. Let's talk about his range, let's see, 6 feet to both sides, covers a lot of ground doesn't he. For $6 mil he's a real deal, the Mets couldn't give him away even if they ate half of his salary. If Bay was in so much demand how come there were no other takers? SF Giants with their pitching are only a hitter away for fighting for the division and they passed on him. This was a typical Mets move, do something to placcate the fans. Maybe they'll surprise peolpe this tear and improve by 10 games over last year. I guess being .500 is something to strive for and build dreams on. Let's dump Omar and then that will be addition thru subtraction.

Since: Aug 25, 2007
Posted on: December 30, 2009 10:07 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

Since: Oct 20, 2006
Posted on: December 30, 2009 9:44 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

Met Fans. Quit whining. I am a met fan too. Every year the Mets try to address their needs and bring in the best talent available (next to the yankees). People whining about Bay's defense. He had 15 assists and a fielding percentage of 1.000. Show me an outfielder who can do that... Gold Glovers Ichiro? Beltran, no.

People whining that they should get pitchers because of Citi field. Dont forget they play 81 games on the road. Bay was driving in 100 runs per year on a pirate team with absolutely no protection around him. Again be grateful for owners TRYING to put the best team out there with big name acquisitions... Bay, F Rod, Santana, Beltran, Delgado to name a few. Try to imagine being a pirates fan whose owners dump talent year after year.

Since: Aug 25, 2007
Posted on: December 30, 2009 9:44 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

Bay is an upgrade over the embarrassing troupe of leftfielders that the Mets trotted out in '09, but he's hardly a giant upgrade. There's no way what the Mets are paying him is worth the difference he'll provide (and before anyone starts with the "Who cares what he makes, I'm not paying him..." rant, the Wilpons are paying him and you can be sure they care.)

As far as his defense in left field goes, nobody is questioning his ability to catch the ball or throw's his ability to get to the ball that's being questioned. He and his repaired knee will have to cover far more ground in Citi than he had to in Fenway. Also, Fenway's short left field meant that he could play several steps closer-in, thereby making it much easier for him (or anyone playing there) to get the ball to the infield quicker. Result: more outfield assists. He'll have no such luxury at Citi.

Anyone who thinks his power numbers won't drop in NY are just plain crazy. The reason why Citi is known as a "pitcher's park" is because....(drum roll please)'s dimensions favor pitchers not batters!!! It's very simple. Any player moving from a hitter-friendly park like Fenway is going to see their power #s drop. It's really that simple.

Since: Oct 20, 2006
Posted on: December 30, 2009 9:37 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

Bay had 15 outfield assists and no errors last season.  Beltran is a gold glove and never had a season with 1.000 fielding percentage. In fact in his best season, he had 16 assists along with 12 errors. Please show me one outfielder who can match  Bays fielding last year.

He is also the 2nd best outfield slugger behind Ryan Braun. Outside of the NY yankees, the Mets always bring in the best players, F Rod 2009, Santana 2008, Beltran, 2007, Delgado 2006. Did you forget mets play 81 road games. Adding a slugger like Bay might help, no???

Since: Dec 16, 2007
Posted on: December 30, 2009 8:46 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

The Mets could have gone after Randy Winn for a shorter, much less costly contract.  The Mets could have been creative and worked something with the Cubs and taken a risk on Milton Bradley while dumping Castillo thereby opening the door to go after Orlando Hudson.  The idea should have been to keep an OF spot warm for FMart and go after young players, particularly pitchers.  A Citifield team should be built on speed and defense.  Once the Mets lock up Molina and resign Delgado, both at I'm sure for at least double what anyone else would pay, we can look for the Mets to contend for the all time team record of grounding in to double plays :) 

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: December 30, 2009 7:59 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

Only 10 HRs? I can hit 15 and I'm only 5 feet 10 inches. Bay is at least good for 20-25 easily! Jason Bay will hit more home runs than that other guy....Matt Holliday.....Holliday will be injured again...something that Bay was not this year. I suppose it's all moot since their starting pitching is terrible. Johan Santana has seriously regressed this year and history shows that left handed power pitchers who sign a large contract usually break down around year 3 of the contract..." which would make next year the one to watch.

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: December 30, 2009 7:24 pm

Bay-watch finished, Mets' winter looking up

I really was expecting Jason Bay to land in the San Francisco Bay Area or Tampa Bay after after all his name is Jason Bay.

I heard that Tampa Bay was going to rename its team after Jason if he signed with was going to be called the Jason Bay Rays....

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