Meet the Mets
David Wright finally spoke to the media today about the state of his rehab and his outlook for the future. All of the stories are depressing, but here is a summary of what was said with them linked throughout.
The Captain emphasized that he wants to do everything in his power to return to the field because he wants to be able to say he gave it his best shot. But he is realistic about his chances, saying, “I just don’t know.”
He said he completely understands the team’s decision to sign Todd Frazer, saying the team has given him “probably more than I deserve.”
“We’re certainly a very good team without me,” he said. “My mind-set is that we’ll be a better team with both of us out there.” He also spoke warmly of his teammates for making him feel like a part of the clubhouse, despite being sidelined.
Wright is taking it slow in his rehab to avoid yet another setback, saying he has yet to run. But even with the future uncertain, he’s not giving up. He is listening to his body, but asking it to give everything it can to the pursuit of playing baseball again.
He also acknowledged Chipper Jones’s comments about envisioning them in the Hall of Fame together. After all, even if his career is cut short, he is in incredibly good company, historically. Wright called the compliment “probably undeserved” in his enduringly humble manner.
Ken Davidoff wrote a strongly-worded rebuke of those that feel that David Wright should pack it in.
The details of Jason Vargas’s contract with the Mets were revealed. He will earn $6 million this season, $8 million next season, and has an $8 million team option for 2020, with a $2 million buyout.
The realities of managing in New York reared their heads to Mickey Callaway for the first time, as he navigated the shark-infested waters of his first controversy as Mets manager.
Some writers have handed out their final evaluations of the Mets’ offseason. John Harper gave Sandy Alderson a B, praising his ability to fill multiple holes on a budget, but noting the lack of a true splash. Meanwhile, Ken Davidoff gives the Mets an A, with the caveat that he’s grading on a curve set by the unusually slow market.
Zack Wheeler addressed his comments in the immediate aftermath of the Jason Vargas signing, walking back his tone a bit.
Anthony DiComo summarizes the stories coming out of Mets camp today, including Matt Harvey throwing live batting practice to Michael Conforto and how the experience of Mickey Callaway’s coaching staff will help him as a new manager.
Around the National League East
Unlike many of his former teammates, Marcel Ozuna never asked to leave Miami. In fact, he says he was in disbelief when he was traded.
Around Major League Baseball
The Padres have signed long time free agent holdout Eric Hosmer to an 8-year contract with an opt-out after 5 years, worth $18 million AAV. It is the largest contract the Padres have given out in franchise history. It seems waiting it out was worth it for Hosmer.
Groundhog Day has come and gone, but it feels like six more weeks of winter for baseball’s free agent market, with many players still unsigned even as spring training begins. The brewing storm continues to be the dominant story in baseball.
While the weaker qualifying offer may have seemed like a victory for the MLBPA at the time the most recent collective bargaining agreement was inked, Travis Sawchik of Fangraphs argues that it is now yet another factor that is contributing to the slow market this offseason, with many players that come with a qualifying offer attached remaining unsigned.
In a head-scratching move, the Rays designated Corey Dickerson—a 2.6 WAR player last year—for assignment to make room for C.J. Cron, who they acquired from the Angels for a player to be named later. It was then revealed that the Rays had a trade in the works that sent Jake Odorizzi to the Twins for infielder Jermaine Palacios. Quite an eventful evening for Tampa, who may be in tank mode.
This Date in Mets History
Historically, not much of note on this day for the Mets. But several former Mets do have birthdays today.