More media reports have emerged that the Mets have had dialogue with the Colorado Rockies regarding superstar shortstop Troy Tulowitzki. Tulo, 30, is a 4-time All-Star and is a career .299 hitter in nine major league seasons. When healthy, few position players are better than Tulowitzki but he just isn’t healthy enough to be worth the remaining $118 million over six years on his current contract, for the Mets plus give up a ton of prospects starting with top prospect Noah Syndergaard.
Tulo has played in 130 games in a season just three times in his nine year career. Last year he was limited to 91 games after having hip surgery. Many great baseball players have hip labral surgery and have had trouble coming back as the same caliber player. Tulowitzki’s status for Opening Day is already in question so why would the Mets, who have negative payroll flexibility (trying to trade salary) acquire such a big contract and give up top chips.
If Tulowitzki was a free agent today and the Mets signed him to a six-year $118 million contract, that would be difficult for this small budget club to handle and that is without trading prospects.
A deal for Tulowitzki is still highly unlikely even if the two clubs could match up on players. The Mets would want the Rockies to pick up much of Tulo’s salary.
While he doesn’t have an actual no-trade clause, Tulowitzki has such a tight relationship with Rockies owner Dick Monfort that he could potentially decline a deal to a destination he doesn’t want to go to. It is unknown if Tulowitzki would “accept” a deal to the Mets.
It appears as if the Rockies are more interested in trading Tulowitzki than the Mets are in acquiring Tulowitzki.
The Mets need to watch their money so they are able to sign lock up young pitchers such as Zack Wheeler, Jacob deGrom and others soon. Acquiring a $20 million a year player like Tulowitzki would prevent the Mets from doing that, so you aren’t just trading prospects you are trading the futures of many on the rise stars like Wheeler.
The Mets have preached payroll flexibility since the day Sandy Alderson was hired. Acquiring Troy Tulowitzki would completely go against that.
Metropolitan Hospitality, the world-class event and hospitality company for Citi Field, will host “Batter Up for a Cause: Autism Speaks” on Wednesday, February 4, 2015 from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Attendees will participate in a unique batting practice event in the Visitors Clubhouse at Citi Field and enjoy light refreshments, a special appearance by Mr. Met and an exclusive tour of the ballpark.
A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Autism Speaks, the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization. It is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families since 2005.
It truly is a great cause, especially during this holiday season. Plus when else as Met fans will you get the opportunity to take batting practice at Citi Field?
Tickets for the event are $99 and can be purchased online at Mets.com/BatterUp. If you are interested you may also purchase tickets by calling 718-507-TIXX.
Tickets are on sale now!
By Steven Inman
Baseball America has come out with their yearly top ten prospect list for every MLB Organization. The Mets are headlined by top pitching prospect Noah Syndergaard who has been in trade rumors of late but is likely to stay Met property.
The big riser in the list in LHP Steven Matz, who didn’t even rank in the top ten last winter and is now right behind Syndergaard. Matz had a terrific year and could help the Mets in some role in the second half of 2015.
The prospect who fell the most was 1B Dominic Smith who was #4 last year but doesn’t appear in the top ten this winter. Smith struggled to hit for power in Low-A Savannah, a park that is very difficult to hit home runs in. 2015 will be a big year for the contact-first hitter.
The Mets of late have had mostly pitchers as top prospects, but the system has become much more balanced as six of the top ten prospects are position players.
By Steven Inman
Join Rob DeLucia of WSJU Radio and myself as we discuss the entire winter meetings in San Diego. We break down the entire N.L. East and determine what team is going to give the Washington Nationals some trouble in 2015.
Remember if you have a question for the next BrokeMets podcast leave it in the comment section and we will answer it during the next show.
By Steven Inman
The Mets have signed right-handed hitter John Mayberry Jr. to a one year deal worth $1.45 million.
Mayberry, 30, is coming off a miserable 2014 with the Phillies and Blue Jays. Between both clubs the outfielder hit .212/.310/.425 in 78 games. (168 plate appearances)
Mayberry Jr. came up as a top prospect with the Rangers as the 19th overall pick of the 2005 draft but has not had the career that Texas or even the Phillies envisioned for him.
The outfielder played for the Phillies in the N.L. East from 2009 until August 31st, 2014 when he was traded to Toronto. Mayberry was non-tendered by the Blue Jays last week.
Mayberry can be a good weapon for Terry Collins if used properly. Mayberry should ONLY be used against left-handed pitching. In 534 career plate appearances vs. lefties, Mayberry is a career .269 hitter with 30 homers. That is compared to a .224/.293/.365 slash line in 866 plate appearances vs. right-handers.
Mayberry is a career .304 hitter with seven homers in 121 PA as a pinch hitter.
The move allows the Mets to move Michael Cuddyer to first base and play Mayberry in the outfield when the opposition starts a left-handed starter. The Mets have said publicly that they plan on playing Lucas Duda everyday, even against left-handers. It will be interesting to see if their tune changes now that the lefty crushing Mayberry will wear the blue and orange.
The winter meetings are in full effect so join my partner Rob DeLucia and I as we discuss the latest rumors swirling around the Mets. We discuss who is the most likely Met starter to be traded and an under the radar issue for the 2015 Mets. (its their defense)
If you have a question for the next podcast leave it in the comment section.
On a day that the Mets crosstown rivals filled their shortstop hole, Sandy Alderson and company continue to try and solve their infield dilemma. The team searched the trade market and were told players such as Didi Gregorius, who was traded to the Yankees Friday morning, would cost a top pitching prospect such as Noah Syndergaard. The Mets elected that trading Syndergaard was too big of a price for a player that has offensive question marks going forward.
Alderson plans on waiting out the shortstop market, hoping to get an everyday option some time in January when the prices come down.
If that is the Mets strategy than the best option is free agent shortstop Jed Lowrie. Lowrie, 30, is coming off a down season with the Athletics. The Mets had interest in Lowrie last winter but the infielder was coming off a career year in 2013 and his price tag in trade talks was considered high.
Lowrie is a free agent for the first time in his career. In my opinion he is without much of a market with so many shortstop position filled now throughout the game and is looking to play everyday to reestablish his value so he can get back on the market next winter as a 31-year old. Lowrie also doesn’t come with draft pick compensation attached to him. Lowrie appears to be the best hitter left on the free agent market as well as the trade market.
The best fits for Lowrie seem to be the Mets or returning to Oakland.
The Mets can likely get Lowrie in January on a one year deal and have him along with Wilmer Flores compete for the shortstop position. Both have experience at second base as well as third so the loser of the competition can be the backup infielder. Lowrie seems to be the best hitter left on the free agent market that can play shortstop. He has a pair of 15 homer seasons on his resume and is versatile enough to play around the diamond if the Mets elect Flores is the better option at short.
The switch hitting Lowrie is definitely a hitter to keep an eye on as a Met fan.
With the non-tender deadline Tuesday night, the Mets made decisions on their seven arbitration eligible players. The team elected to keep all except Eric Young Jr. Young, 29, hit .229 with a .299 OBP and 30 SB in 100 games for the Mets in 2014. The Mets originally got Young in the summer of 2013 in exchange for Collin McHugh, who had a breakout ’14 season for the Houston Astros. With Young getting a raise in arbitration, his speed was a luxury that the Mets couldn’t afford.
In a surprising move the Mets elected to keep Ruben Tejada who is coming off another tough season. Tejada should get close to $2 million in arbitration so it is surprising that the Mets who are trying to save every dollar they can to find a shortstop elected to keep Tejada at that price range.
MLB Trade Rumors Projected 2015 Mets salaries
- Bobby Parnell (5.132) – $3.7MM
- Daniel Murphy (5.109) – $8.3MM
- Eric Young Jr. (4.123) – $2.3MM
- Dillon Gee (4.028) – $5.1MM
- Ruben Tejada (3.171) – $1.7MM
- Lucas Duda (3.137) – $4.3MM
- Jenrry Mejia (2.140) – $3.1MM
*Young Jr: Non-tendered on Tuesday
The Mets also made a mistake in tendering a contract to Bobby Parnell. Parnell is coming off Tommy John surgery and will not be ready for Opening Day. He is also a luxury the Mets can’t afford right now. If they had non-tendered him they could have brought him back at a cheaper salary.
Did the Mets make the right decisions at the non-tender deadline?
By Steven Inman
With Michael Cuddyer now in the fold, the Mets payroll is close to $100 million. It won’t stay at that number all winter as many veterans such as Daniel Murphy, Bartolo Colon, Dillon Gee and Jon Niese could be traded for prospects to save money.
The rival Atlanta Braves are actively looking for a back end starter to give them innings. According to David O’ Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Braves are willing to listen on any of their young power relievers not named Craig Kimbrel.
So why would the Braves trade Avilan? Well he is coming off a rough year where he had a 4.57 ERA in 62 games. His advanced peripherals (4.24 FIP) don’t suggest he was better than his ERA in 2014. Avilan had an ERA of 2.00 and 1.52 in 2012 and 2013 respectively. The reliever has always been deadly on left-handers though with a .195 batting average against left-handed bats.
Avilan won’t be a free agent until after the 2018 season. With the Braves actively looking for a starter and the Mets looking to dump one, perhaps these two rival teams can match up on a trade.
With Dillon Gee expected to make $5 million in arbitration next year he could be the New York pitcher moved. Gee, 28, won’t be a free agent for two more seasons and could help bridge the gap until some of the Braves young pitching prospects such as Lucas Sims and Jason Hursh are ready. Gee is 3-1 with a 2.23 ERA at Turner Field in six career starts.
Again this is just speculation but it does make sense. Sandy Alderson and new Braves President John Hart won’t be afraid to deal within the division and the Braves plan on dealing from the excellent relief core to add a starter who can give them length in games. That’s exactly what Gee has done when healthy.
By Steven Inman
With the acquisition of Michael Cuddyer to a two-year $21 million deal, the Mets lineup now looks more balanced than it has in a few seasons. The Mets are now likely over budget going into 2015 but if they can just somehow keep Daniel Murphy another season, than this Mets lineup may not be a liability as it has been in the previous few years
CF Juan Lagares Right
2B Daniel Murphy Left
3B David Wright Right
1B Lucas Duda Left
RF Michael Cuddyer Right
LF Curtis Granderson Left
C Travis d’Arnaud Right
SS Wilmer Flores Right
Again with the rising arbitration cost of Daniel Murphy, who could be up to $9 million in 2015, it is likely that Murphy is on another team next season. However if the team could trade someone else, such as Bartolo Colon’s salary and keep Murphy’s bat in the lineup than they could balance left-right-left-right throughout the entire lineup. It should be very interesting to see the Mets offseason approach in terms of their lineup during December’s Winter Meetings.
Ideally the Mets can still find a starting shortstop, moving Wilmer Flores to the bench and Juan Lagares out of the leadoff spot. Flores is out of options so he will make the 25-man roster regardless.