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METS CONTINGENCY WOOS WAGNER

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Several members of the Mets front office, including GM Omar Minaya, flew down to Virginia to meet yesterday with Billy Wagner. The Phillies still have exclusive negotiating rights with Wags, so the meeting was just a "how ya doing", with no financial terms being discussed. According to the Post:

The meeting included Mets GM Omar Minaya, as well as assistant GM John Ricco and special assistant Tony Bernazard. Wagner was there with his wife and his agent, Bean Stringfellow. The meeting was introductory and lasted several hours.

There should be no doubt how much the Mets are interested in having the free-agent Wagner sign as their new closer. They called Stringfellow twice within the first three days of free agency. Now, they have met with the pitcher personally.

The Mets are following the blueprint that netted them Pedro Martinez and Carlos Beltran last offseason -- a plan that will also surely include big New York bucks changing hands. The Mets obviously realize how important landing a closer of Wagner's caliber would be to the team. He is apparently looking for a three-year deal and I wouldn't be surprised to see the Mets go as high as 3/$30 to get him signed.