|How much longer will R.A. Dickey be a Met? (Getty Images)|
If the 2012 season ended today, then Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey would likely wind up hoisting the NL Cy Young Award. Needless to say, the Mets would like to keep such a talent (and such a box-office draw) in the fold for the foreseeable future.
The Mets hold a $5 million option on Dickey's services for 2013, which they will of course exercise. After next season, however, he'll be eligible for free agency.
Not surprisingly, GM Sandy Alderson would prefer to see to matters before Dickey hits the market. However, as Andy McCullough of the Newark Star-Ledger reports, the Mets in the early weeks of this season talked about a modest extension for Dickey, but they ulimately -- and understandably (seriously, who among us saw Dickey's 2012 successes coming?) -- opted for a "wait and see" approach. Needless to say, Dickey's market position has changed just a bit.
Also complicating things for both sides is the fact that there aren't any contractual roadmaps for knuckleballers who peak at age 37."With his kind of knuckleball, you've got to believe [he can last] three or four more years, at least," one rival NL exec told McCullough. "He's got such great makeup. He's going to keep himself in great condition. He's going to keep that edge for quite a while."
Letting the deliriously popular Dickey walk would be a delirously unpopular decision, so the Mets, presumably, will do their level-best to get something done. But it doesn't figure to be easy, and it'll certainly be far more expensive than it would've been mere months ago.