Meet the Mets
Jose Reyes Watch: Joel Sherman spoke to some sources with the club who expressed only negativity regarding Reyes' trip to free agency. One source said that he thinks Reyes "will be blown away by someone else". Another official said his instinct was that the Mets have "no shot". Sigh. What shouldn't be a surprise in all of this is that the process will be drawn out, with a conclusion not likely until December's Winter Meetings at the earliest. Yes, the next month should be boatloads of fun.
It probably won't be fun for 15 Mets employees, or should I say "former" employees. The Mets announced on Friday that they've laid off 15 of their approximately 180 employees. Obviously, times are tough for every business (believe me, I know) but it seems like things continue to get worse for the organization. VP of Business Operations Dave Howard stated that the layoffs were made in order to "operate more efficiently" and that they were "unrelated to the Madoff situation." Of course, it was Mr. Howard who famously stated, once upon a time, that there were no obstructed views in Citi Field and later on, that the Mets were "not for sale, in whole or part", so I advise you to take this news as you will.
Baseball America released the list of minor league free agents that were set loose on November 2nd and the Mets let go of 19 of their own minor leaguers. Nobody really surprising was let go as part of this group, although Val Pascucci and Chin-Lung Hu were the only two to accrue big league service time with the club in 2011.
Toby Hyde digs into the mailbag and answers questions about Wilmer Flores playing 2nd and 3rd base in winter ball and the difference in competition between the Short Season New York-Penn League and the Full Season A South Atlantic League.
Howard Megdal delves deep into the recesses of the free agent market to take a look at former Orioles utility man Jake Fox as a potential bench fit for the 2012 Mets. Fox's big draw, besides a few years of AAA offensive dominance in the Cubs organization, is that he's incredibly versatile, as he can catch along with playing first base and the corner outfield positions.
Around the Majors
The Phillies announced the signing of veteran
first baseman slugger Jim Thome, who will begin his second tour of duty in Philly as a pinch hitter, or something like that, considering he hasn't played 1st base since 2007. They are also said to be in hot pursuit of former Twins utility man Michael Cuddyer.
The MLB All Stars won their third straight in Taiwan, beating the Chinese Taipei national team 6-2.
The Cubs began the managerial interview process by bringing in Phillies bench coach Pete Mackanin, while the Cardinals brought in former Gold Glove winning catcher Mike Matheny to interview for their open managerial position.
Over at Fangraphs, they take a look at two Braves players who are on the trade market. I'm kind of surprised the Braves are interested in dealing Martin Prado with Chipper Jones' injury issues and pending retirement after 2012. I am not surprised that Jair Jurrjens is on the block, considering his injury issues and underwhelming peripheral numbers. I am even less surprised that Royals GM Dayton Moore is rumored to be first in line, waving one of his best prospects in outfielder Wil Myers. Come on...it's Dayton Moore and an Atlanta Braves player. You know the meme.
Finally, should the Giants trade Tim Lincecum for some offense? Um, yeah. That seems like a crazy idea to me.