Tag:Jose Reyes
Posted on: July 28, 2011 2:22 pm
 

Mets keep Reyes, for now (and maybe later)

Way back when, Jose Reyes was the Mets player that the Giants coveted.

Way back when, Reyes was the player that you were absolutely certain the Mets would be trading this month. Even two weeks ago, at the All-Star Game, one person close to Reyes said he wasn't totally convinced Reyes would still be with the Mets after July 31.

And as for the chances that the Mets would be able to keep Reyes past this season? Way back then, that was laughable.

But after the Mets made the Carlos Beltran trade with the Giants official on Thursday, general manager Sandy Alderson said what had become apparent over the last week. He doesn't have plans to trade anyone else away this month, and he certainly doesn't have plans to trade Jose Reyes.

It's still hard to know exactly how much chance the Mets have of signing Reyes after the season. That's because it's hard to know what their financial situation will be, and also because it's hard to know how Reyes' outstanding 2011 season will affect his market value.

On the first point, it's worth noting that the Mets felt good enough about their money situation that they paid $4 million of Beltran's contract, in order to get the Giants to deal a better prospect (Zack Wheeler). There's no doubt that the lawsuit stemming from the Bernie Madoff mess has taken some favorable turns from the Mets' standpoint.

But even with that, Alderson was asked whether the $5 million saved in the Beltran and Francisco Rodriguez trades would be put back into the payroll, he said only that he was "fairly confident that at least a portion of it will be reinvested in players."

And Reyes?

"What about Reyes?" Alderson said, repeating the question on the conference call. "I don't know, $5 million is not going to get him signed. Hopefully, we'll engage him in the offseason."

For Mets fans who covet Reyes the way the Giants once did, that's sort of good news, because at least it is no longer a given that Reyes will be gone. Not only that, but it's now a given that he'll at least remain in a Mets uniform through September.

Way back when, that seemed impossible.
Posted on: July 12, 2011 7:42 pm
Edited on: July 12, 2011 7:58 pm
 

Reyes hits, hopes to return soon

PHOENIX -- Jose Reyes should have been leading off for the National League Tuesday night.

It would have been perfect for him, a chance at a nationally televised advertisement for his pending free agency. It would have been great for baseball, maybe baseball's most exciting player in an All-Star Game that badly needs some star power.

Reyes is on the disabled list with a hamstring injury, but at least his trip to Phoenix hasn't been a waste. He took batting practice and fielded ground balls each of the last two days, and Reyes said Tuesday that he plans to test his hamstring by running hard when the Mets work out on Thursday in New York.

If all goes well, Reyes could return to the Mets' lineup on July 18, the first day he'll be eligible.

"The last three or four days, it's really been improved," Reyes said.

Category: MLB
Posted on: July 11, 2011 8:25 pm
Edited on: July 11, 2011 8:58 pm
 

Does option hinder K-Rod trade? Maybe not

PHOENIX -- For weeks, the conventional wisdom on Francisco Rodriguez has been that if the Mets trade him, it would be to a team that needs a setup man rather than one that needs a closer.

The thinking was that with K-Rod already 62 percent of the way toward guaranteeing his $17.5 million vesting option for 2012 (he needs 55 games finished, and he has 34 at the All-Star break), no team would want to take a chance on letting him get there.

But here's something to think about, something that might change that conventional wisdom significantly:

K-Rod just changed agents, from Paul Kinzer to Scott Boras. Boras is likely to be less worried about the vesting option and more concerned about positioning Rodriguez as the best closer on this winter's free-agent market (and, in fact, Boras reminded reporters Monday that K-Rod is a closer and should remain one). The best way to position Rodriguez as a closer is to have him close games all year -- and if he does it in a pennant race, so much the better).

But what about that $17.5 million?

Well, it doesn't need to be $17.5 million. K-Rod could potentially (and would consider, according to sources) bargain away that vesting option, perhaps for an increase in the $3.5 million buyout that is already part of his contract.

That way, the Mets could get prospects they need back in a trade (and avoid paying the $17.5 million themselves), the acquiring team would get a quality closer (and not run the risk of spending $17.5 million next year themselves). And K-Rod would get an improved buyout, a chance to better position himself in the free-agent market, and the opportunity to hit the market at 29 years old, rather than at 30.

*****

Mets general manager Sandy Alderson told reporters last week that it's "very unlikely" that he'll trade Jose Reyes, who will be a free agent at the end of the season.

I'm starting to believe him (especially with Reyes currently on the disabled list), but I'm still not fully convinced. And here's one significant thing to remember when considering whether Reyes will be traded:

When Reyes closed the door on in-season contract negotiations with the Mets, he didn't completely rule out an in-season deal with a team that would trade for him. In fact, sources say, Reyes would be willing to consider such a proposal.

Why would he listen to another team and not the Mets, when he has said that he loves playing in New York and would like to stay with the Mets? Two possible reasons: One, Reyes knows that the Mets are in no financial position now to make him an offer that he would consider accepting, and he doesn't want them to make an offer that would solely help them public relations-wise. Second, were he to talk with another team, it would only be during a brief window once a trade was agreed to, so it wouldn't be nearly as much of a distraction.

*****

Of all the Mets, All-Star Carlos Beltran remains the most likely to be traded, in part because his contract doesn't permit the Mets to offer him salary arbitration at the end of the season. Thus, the Mets would not get any draft-pick compensation when Beltran signs with another team.

The Giants are one team known to be interested in Beltran.




Posted on: June 28, 2011 8:50 pm
 

Braun: At this point, Prince is MVP

NEW YORK -- Prince Fielder is already set to hit the free-agent jackpot this winter.

Imagine if he hits the market as the National League's Most Valuable Player.

Fielder has huge numbers, and teammate Ryan Braun set the MVP campaign going Tuesday, saying, "At this point, Prince has probably been the MVP in the National League. The only other guy in the conversation is probably Matt Kemp."

Mets fans would likely argue on behalf of Jose Reyes (but who knows if he'll even be in the National League by the end of the year). And with half a season to go, any number of other players could merit consideration.

But Fielder entered play Tuesday with a 1.037 OPS (second to Kemp), 21 home runs (one behind Kemp) and 68 RBI (leading the league). He had 41 extra-base hits and 44 strikeouts.

"He's been incredible," Braun said.

Brewers people say that Fielder has been able to avoid talking about free agency, in large part because the Brewers are in first place, but also because there's no real hint of an attempt by the team to sign him.

It's basically a given that Fielder will play elsewhere next year, but it's also a certainty that Fielder has given his all for the Brewers this year.

"He's had a great attitude and a great outlook," general manager Doug Melvin said. "He hasn't lost any focus. I talked to [agent] Scott Boras this spring, and we agreed that the best thing for the team and for Prince was to just worry about [the contract] later."

Boras will have plenty of time to make his case. And by then, perhaps the binder will include an MVP award, as well.


Posted on: June 21, 2011 6:15 pm
Edited on: June 21, 2011 7:28 pm
 

Reyes to Mets: No talks during season

NEW YORK -- We still don't know where Jose Reyes will play next year. We still don't know where Jose Reyes will finish this year.

But we do know now that he won't be signing a new contract with the Mets before the season ends.

We suspected it, anyway. We suspected that Reyes, half a season away from free agency, would want to see how much he can get on the open market. We suspected that the financially-troubled Mets would never be able to afford a contract that would tempt Reyes to forego free agency.

Now they won't even need to dance the dance, at least not during the season.

General manager Sandy Alderson announced Tuesday that the Mets reached out to Peter Greenberg, Reyes' agent, in hopes of beginning negotiations. After meeting with Reyes on Monday, Greenberg told Alderson that the shortstop would rather not talk about his contract now.

For the record, Reyes repeated what he has said before, that he hopes to remain with the Mets.

"I want to stay here," he said. "I want to be a New York Met my whole career."

Reyes played the decision not to negotiate as a desire to avoid distractions. Alderson played it as just part of the process.

"It wasn't a surprise," Alderson said. "I wouldn't even label it as a disappointment."

Alderson also suggested that the Mets won't be anxious to trade Reyes, even if they fall farther behind in the pennant race. The Mets began play Tuesday 9 1/2 games behind the first-place Phillies, and five games behind the wild-card leading Braves.

"I think if we're in it, it would be hard for me to see us trading Jose Reyes," Alderson said.

But Alderson also said that "winning or losing is a lot less relevant in Jose's case [as opposed to other tradeable Mets]." While he didn't really expand on that, the sense was that he considers trading Reyes unlikely, because of what they would need to get back.

So does that mean the Mets will keep Reyes and take their chances in free agency?

Not necessarily. With a player like Reyes, who is having an outstanding seasson and is a real difference-maker, teams will call whether the Mets are "shopping him" or not. Teams will ask.

And it only makes sense that Alderson will listen.

Will someone offer enough to convince Alderson to make a deal?

That's just one more thing we still don't know.


Category: MLB
Tags: Jose Reyes, Mets
 
Posted on: June 3, 2011 11:12 pm
Edited on: June 3, 2011 11:20 pm
 

More Mets woes: Wright out another month

NEW YORK -- At least Sandy Alderson still has a sense of humor.

It's gallows humor, yes. But these are the Mets.

"Maybe we'll have David [Wright] back for [Johan] Santana's first start," the Mets general manager said at the end of another typical Mets Friday night.

Alderson had just announced that Wright, despite no more tests, will now be held out of all baseball activities -- "essentially inactive," he said -- for another three weeks.

That means that Wright, who has already missed 2 1/2 weeks with a stress fracture in his back (which the Mets originally hoped would cost him only two weeks) will now be lucky to be back by the All-Star break. The Mets would like to think that Santana, recovering from shoulder surgery, will join them sometime in late July.

Alderson admitted he was surprised by the setback for Wright, given the lack of any new tests and given that Wright is, as he said, "asymptomatic."

"We had hoped he'd be cleared for baseball activity," Alderson said. "But this is something that needs time to heal."

Even the three-week timetable is no guarantee for Wright, as Alderson said doctors plan another X-ray of his back at that point. Even when Wright is cleared for baseball activity, he'll need time to get ready to play in major-league games, since by then he'll have missed more than a month.

It was more bad news at the end of another bad day for the Mets, who for the third time in four days turned a late-inning lead into a loss, this time 6-3 to the Braves. Making it even worse, Francisco Rodriguez gave up the three ninth-inning runs, giving him 22 games finished (with 33 more to go to trigger a $17.5 million option that the Mets can't afford).

Also Friday, injured first baseman Ike Davis said he has no idea when he'll be able to return.

And shortstop Jose Reyes committed an error on a routine play in the eighth inning, allowing the tying run to score.

Just another day for the Mets.






Posted on: May 24, 2011 5:18 pm
Edited on: May 24, 2011 5:32 pm
 

Mets: Moneyball with (no?) money

When the Mets hired Sandy Alderson last fall, and when Alderson reassembled part of his old Oakland front office by bringing in J.P. Ricciardi and Paul DePodesta (all supposedly with huge salaries), there was a lot of talk about "Moneyball with money."

DePodesta even referenced it when he joined the Mets in November.

"We have a lot of work to do to get to that level, but the opportunity to be able to do that is really exciting, no question," he said that day, according to MLB.com.

Now, more and more, it looks like the idea was Moneyball . . . without money.

In the latest stop on his awkward media blitz, Mets owner Fred Wilpon admitted to Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci that the Mets will not spend most of the $64 million coming off the payroll after this year. Verducci suggested that the Mets will reduce the payroll by 30 percent, a cut of more than $40 million that would likely drop them into the bottom half of big-league payrolls.

Not only that, but as Wilpon talked to Verducci about the payroll, he said, "That's one of the reasons that I needed someone like Sandy Alderson."

The assumption all along has been that Carlos Beltran and Francisco Rodriguez won't be Mets next season, and that it was almost certain that Jose Reyes would leave as well, either as a free agent or through a midseason trade.

But the more Wilpon talks, the more it seems that he hired Alderson in hopes he would shop at the same bargain bins he was forced to frequent with the A's.

As one Mets person said Tuesday, "We're out beating the bushes [the minor leagues] for players. That's all we can afford."

Wilpon also told Verducci that he believes he'll be able to hold onto his team, assuming he doesn't lose all the money that Madoff trustee Irving Picard is trying to recover from him.

That means more Wilpon ownership, and maybe more Moneyball . . . without money.



Posted on: May 23, 2011 11:09 am
Edited on: May 23, 2011 12:42 pm
 

In latest Mets crisis, owner blasts players

Bud Selig was right!

Just as the commissioner has said over and over, the Mets and Dodgers are not at all alike. Just check out this week's New Yorker for proof.

Of all the dumb things Dodgers lame-duck owner Frank McCourt has said and done, he didn't invite a reporter into his suite to listen to him make fun of his players. No, that was the latest dumb thing that (possibly lame-duck) Mets owner Fred Wilpon did.

The rips of Jose Reyes, David Wright and Carlos Beltran are buried in Jeffrey Toobin's very sympathetic, 10,000-word look at Wilpon's relationship with Bernard Madoff (Toobin gave Madoff another chance to proclaim Wilpon's innocence), but it's the rips that had Mets fans talking Monday morning.

Reyes "thinks he's going to get Carl Crawford money" and "won't get it," Wilpon told Toobin while they watched an early-season Mets loss together.

Wright is "A really good kid. A very good player. Not a superstar," Wilpon said.

Beltran is "65 to 70 percent of what he was," and got his seven-year, $119 million contract with the Mets solely because of "one [playoff] series."

Some Mets fans will no doubt concur with the owner's judgments. Some Mets fans will no doubt be thrilled to hear that the owner can be as emotional about the team as they are.

But do you really want to tell your best players that the owner thinks they're not that good? Do you really want to tell other teams that the players you're going to try to trade this summer aren't worth the money?

This is so typical Mets.

No, Selig is right. Fred Wilpon is no Frank McCourt.

 
 
 
 
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