By Steven Inman
In an attempt to shake up an under performing playoff team the Reds have had interest in trading 2B Brandon Phillips and the $50 million left on his contract. Many Mets fans have asked why the Mets haven’t been involved in acquiring the popular second basemen.
For starters Phillips has $50 million left on his contract over the next four years. Phillips, 32, hit .261 with 18 homers and a .310 OBP last year. Despite his theatrics in the field, Phillips is no longer a better option at second base than Daniel Murphy. Phillips had a lower Average, OPS, OBP, WAR and extra base hits than Murphy. He is also due $45 million more than Murphy and doesn’t make sense for a team that has so many other holes.
Phillips also clashed with the Reds front office about how they handled his contract and had an altercation with a Cincinnati reporter who criticized his on base percentage.
Phillips will likely stay with the Reds because they will not be able to get much in value for him in addition to getting another team to take on the entirety of his contract. He is not an option for the New York Mets.
By Steven Inman
The Mets have brought back SP Jeremy Hefner on a minor league deal. Hefner will spend most of the season rehabbing from Tommy John surgery but will be under the Mets control as an arbitration eligible player after the season. The Mets will save about 500,000 on Hefner’s deal here and won’t lose any service time over the right-hander.
Before being shut down in August and undergoing surgery, the 27-year old posted a 4.34 ERA in 130.2 innings with the Mets.
Hefner had a nice year for the Mets last year and will be depth for the team in 2015 when a lot of their young players like Rafael Montero and Noah Synderrgaard are ready to anchor the Mets rotation.
By Steven Inman
The Mets have been “shocked” by the prices that free agents are getting on the open market. Yet, they are still shopping 2B Daniel Murphy around and he could get traded this week in Orlando during the winter meetings. With the prices that lesser players are getting on the market, trading Murphy makes even less sense.
Murphy has value on the market but the Mets won’t get fair value for him because of the perception of him defensively. Murphy has turned into a close to league average defensive second basemen. Offensively he has been fantastic the last few years and is under team control for two more years. Murphy was a three win player in 2013, his best WAR year. The Mets don’t have any interest in giving Murphy a contract extension.
One of the reasons the Mets want to move Murph is to clear his 2014 $5 million salary. I just don’t see how trading Murphy will make the Mets better as he is only 28 and should thrive in a better Mets lineup. In Murphy’s six years in the big leagues he really has only played in one above average lineup and that was his rookie year in ’08.
If the Mets trade Murphy they will have a big hole at second and are hesitant to use Eric Young Jr. every day at second base. The best second basemen on the open market is Omar Infante and he is likely to get three years at more than $10 million a year so the Mets would most likely be unable to fill second base externally.
Should the Mets trade Daniel Murphy?
By Steven Inman
With the Mariners blockbuster signing of 2B Robinson Cano, infielder Nick Franklin is left without a spot in the Seattle infield and is likely to be traded according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. While Franklin played mostly second base in the majors, (just 3 games at short) he was a shortstop coming up through the minor leagues. The Mets should inquire on Franklin to see if he is a fit to fill their enormous hole at shortstop.
Franklin,22, was decent last year defensively at second base but make no mistake about it, he would be a below average defensive shortstop. However he can make a name for himself in New York with his power. Sandy Alderson is actively searching for more power in their lineup and Franklin could hit 20 homeruns in the majors if he is given 600 at bats. In 102 games last year for Seattle the rookie Franklin hit 12 homers with 45 RBI’s.
He’s just 22 and was a top 50 prospect in the game last year so he has a ton of upside.
Franklin is going to be traded and it could happen during the winter meetings in the next few days. Perhaps a deal for Ike Davis would interest Seattle who could play Davis at first and have Justin Smoak DH. A deal like that could also save the Mets about 4 million dollars that could be used to get a starting pitcher.
Would Nick Franklin be a good fit for the Mets?
The Mets have signed OF Curtis Granderson to a 4-year deal worth $60 million. The Mets were holding out at 3-years for $45 million as of this morning but something must have changed. They overpayed here a bit as it didn’t seem another team was willing to offer four years but the Mets get their guy.
The Mets will lose their second round pick as a result of signing Granderson.
Before this deal the biggest contract Sandy Alderson gave out was two winters ago when he gave Frank Francisco 2 years and $12 million. Alderson has spent a total of $27 million on free agency as Mets General Manager before more than doubling that today.
Granderson has worn numbers #14 and #28 in the past. 14 is retired by the Mets and 28 belongs to Daniel Murphy so we will see what goes on with that as we get closer to Spring Training.
The Mets must not stop here however, they need to find themselves a shortstop that can also be a leadoff hitter. With this signing Eric Young Jr. goes back to being a fourth outfielder so the Mets don’t have themselves a leadoff hitter in their projected lineup.
The team can now go into the winter meetings next week focusing on trades. Ideally they find themselves a shortstop by trading Ike Davis but many Mets players will be mentioned in rumors over the next week. Continue checking BrokeMets to hear the latest!
By Steven Inman
The Mets have been talking to former Yankee OF Curtis Granderson and the two sides are getting close. Granderson has been searching for a four-year deal in the $64 million range, while the Mets have offered roughly three years and $45 million. Most media outlets are reporting that the Mets have the only offer out there for Granderson. They are still the favorites to sign him and his camp would like to stay in New York but this is far from a done deal.
The Mets should stay firm here on a three-year deal. If they can get Granderson for $45 million it would be a strong deal for them. Keep in mind he will be 33 before Opening Day next year so a four-year deal could be a little more risky. Unless another team offers four years there is no reason the Mets should have to or they will be bidding against themselves. They need to maintain some payroll flexibility here to add a starting pitcher and or a shortstop.
The Mets main competition for Granderson are the Boston Red Sox and the Seattle Mariners. The Red Sox have their sole focus on resigning Mike Napoli while the Mariners are close to a mega deal with 2B Robinson Cano.
By Steven Inman
After non-tendering Justin Turner, Jordany Valdespin and letting go of Mike Baxter, the Mets bench is completely empty at the moment. A number of players that were non-tendered elsewhere would make good fits. One of those players could be former rookie of the year Chris Coghlan. Coghlan was non-tendered by Miami this week. They have interest in bringing him back but Marlins President Mike Hill suggested that Coghlan would need to take a minor league deal to rejoin Miami. He may have better opportunity elsewhere. Coghlan,28, hit .256 with a .318 OBP in 214 plate appearances in Miami last year. With the Mets bench as empty as it is right now, they need to consider guys like Coghlan who have had success in the past.
While Coghlan is a poor outfielder at best, he would probably be the Mets 5th outfielder so he wouldn’t start all that much. the mets have been missing depth players like this for a while because of all the injuries and poor performance they have gotten over the past few years by role players. If Coghlan bounces back the Mets will have control over him for a few years as an arbitration eligible player.
Coghlan hits righties relatively well (.279 compared to .242 against left-handers.) He doesn’t have a ton of pop but he can be what Mike Baxter was for the Mets in 2012 which is a reliable pinch hitter against right-handed relievers late in games. A contract close to the league minimum could get it done if the mets guarantee he will make the team.
By Steven Inman
Lagares has been playing very well in winter ball for Las Aguilas Cibaenas. Lagares hit .342 with a .379 OBP in 28 games, with five doubles, a home run, 16 RBI and seven walks.
Lagares hit .242 with a .281 OBP and .633 OPS in 121 games for the Mets in 2013.
By Steven Inman
With shortstops flying off the board one name that has stayed a free agent is Stephen Drew. Drew,30, a Scott Boras Client has been looking for a four year deal. It seemed like a forgone conclusion within the industry that Drew would end up on the Cardinals but Jhonny Peralta ended up there, leaving Drew without an obvious destination. The same thing happened to Michael Bourn last year when Atlanta and Philadelphia moved on leaving him stuck without a team until the second week of February. The Mets seemed to be the runner up with Bourn before he went to Cleveland. There is a chance the same happens for Drew. With his demands still sky high Drew is not close to a deal anywhere. The longer he stays on the market, the chances increase for the Mets to get involved here.
Drew was having a nice bounce back season before having an abysmal postseason.
The Mets publicly are saying that they are okay with Ruben Tejada at short everyday next year. I believe they are only saying this because they aren’t confident at this point that they can find a decent replacement. If Drew stays on the market perhaps the Mets get involved because if they don’t have a shortstop by the end of January and he doesn’t have a team by the end of January then perhaps the Mets can get a decent deal here.
Scott Boras has a reputation for finding great deals for his players late in the offseason seemingly out of thin air. Nobody two years ago saw the Tigers signing Prince Fielder for $214 million. So I don’t mean to get Mets fans too hopeful here but the idea that the Mets have already failed to get acquire a shortstop is simply not true.
By Steven Inman
The Mets have reportedly offered free agent OF Curtis Granderson a three-year deal and the two sides could wrap up a deal before the Winter Meetings on Monday. Over the past three or four years the Mets have lacked credibility from agents and players from other teams. Worst off, they have lost credibility from their fans. Curtis Granderson could change all that IF he isn’t the only major move the Mets make this winter.
For the past few months fans have been as down as ever on this franchise. The comments I have gotten from fans were extremely pessimistic that things will turn around anytime soon. People doubt the Wilpon’s ability to spend money. They doubt Sandy’s plan and all of that is perfectly reasonable at this point. If the Mets sign Granderson without completely overpaying him it can be a great start to what could be the offseason that turns the Mets around.
Granderson, 32, would likely make the Mets outfield complete but they still need to bring in a shortstop, likely in trade as well as signing at least one starting pitcher. A pitcher who could give them more length than what they have gotten from the back end of their rotation the past few years.
Granderson gives the Mets some left-handed power. Something the team desperately needs right now and he is probably the best fit left on the free agent market. He also would be a very good fit for this young Met clubhouse. The only other team that I have heard interested in Granderson are the Red Sox.
Granderson is still looking for a fourth year but if he can’t find it he will likely take the Mets deal because from what I am hearing Granderson’s camp wants to remain in New York. If he does get a fourth year elsewhere the Mets may match it. They really like him and have prioritized him over other outfielders like Nelson Cruz.