So I decided to write up a couple of my opinions on some options the Mets have for the offseason. My goal was to make moves that if they go right will bring the Mets close to contention without setting them back in the future.
Lets start with the big issue for the offseason. In the beginning I was against resigning Reyes because I thought it would hurt us on the back end of the deal which is when we are most likely to be competitive anyways. Also I thought the 2 draft picks would be more valuable to us 5 years from now than an aging Reyes. Further I thought that resigning Reyes would lock up that side of the infield for the future and thus allow only second base for Tejada and Murphy, unless someone wanted to try the outfield. However, now I think that if the Mets can get him for a reasonable deal they should. He will help keep the Mets relevant and will hopefully still be productive in a few years. Also for a year or 2 Tejada could be allowed to develop in the minors and be called up in case of injuries. I would structure the deal as a 5 year 96 million dollar deal with a 6 year team option at 15 million with a 4 million buyout. Total value is then 5 years 100 mil or 6 years 111 mil.
It would be structured like this:
2012- 16 Mil
2013- 18 Mil
2014- 20 Mil
2015- 22 Mil
2016- 20 Mil
2017- 15 Mil option or 4 mil buyout.
Hopefully that will beat the Marlins offer.
Next up comes the bullpen. Acosta, Byrdak, Parnell and Beato have spots, carrasco is in AAA. Sign Frank Fransico for 2 years at 8 million and Octavio Dotel for 1 year 3 million per. This gives us some depth in AAA (Carrasco and Ray Herrera) also sign Bucholz to a minor league deal.
For the starting rotation I’m going to tender Pelfery and trade him for some prospects. Next I am going to sign Erik Berdard for 1 year 5 million dollars and Rich Harden for 1 year 3 million dollars. These guys are both injury risks but finished the year healthy and have the potential to be very good. Harden’s ERA is a bit misleading considering who he pitched against. This article makes the argument more convincingly that I can. The link is here:
Anyways those guys are the 4 and 5 behind Santana, Dickey, and Niese. Since there are three injury risks I’m also going to sign Chris Volstad for 1 year 1 million he will start at AAA and will be the 6th starter with Gee as the 7th. This rotation could be very bad if Harden, Berdard, and Santana all go down. But if 1 or both stay healthy this rotation could be quite good. Plus with the strengthened bullpen it should take some of the burden of the starters.
Now for the rest of the team its going to remain pretty much the same. Pagan is going to be tendered a contract. I’m not going to bother to fill out the bench because I am getting tired of writing, but needless to say a backup catcher will be signed to mentor Thole. I'll be generous and say it costs 5 million to fill out the bench.
So now I am going to go through the starting roster (not the bullpen) and post my admittedly optimistic projections:
LF- Jason Bay- I am one of the few fans who still have hope for Bay. I think the change in the walls will see him return close to his pre-Mets form.
CF- Pagan- I think we will see him settle between last year’s production and 2010 as a solid center fielder.
RF- Duda shows that last season wasn’t a fluke.
1B- A healthy Ike also shows that last season wasn’t a fluke
2B- Murphy can hit, that’s obvious and he slowly improves his 2B defense.
SS- Reyes- Regresses a bit from last year, spends a bit of time on the DL and Tejada fills in admirably. All in all a Reyes year.
3B- Wright returns to close to his old form.
C- Thole progresses with his pitch selection and offensively has a slight improvement.
Santana- Stays healthy and pitches to a mid 3 ERA.
Dickey- Maintains his production.
Niese- Pitches to a mid 3 ERA.
Berdard- Stays healthy and pitches all year to a mid-high 3 ERA.
Harden- Gives 100 innings with an ERA just below 4.
Volstad- 100 innings ERA just above 4.
If I did my math right that adds to around 111 million for the 2011 payroll.