A blog dedicated to the New York Mets with some other baseball thrown in.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


$51.1 million is crazy on so many levels. It is not only entirely likely, but it is probable that the Red Sox will pay $20 to $25 million per year for Daisuke's contract over a likely five year contract. That is of course unless they do not reach a deal and just wanted to keep him out of the Yankees hands for at least another year, but I find it hard that this was a move to cock block the Yankees.

"We have long admired Mr. Matsuzaka's abilities and believe he would be a great fit with the Red Sox organization," Boston general manager Theo Epstein said. "Clearly, we believe Mr. Matsuzaka is a real talent."

It will be interesting to see how this plays out. I for one am hoping that they can reach a deal so I can see the kid pitch. On another note, it was nice that Aaron Heilman got included in ESPNs best pitchers list as they assembled a staff of the top five starters in ERA, the top five relievers in holds, and the top closer in saves for less money than it costs to simply talk to Daisuke.

2006 Salary
Johan Santana, MIN SP $8.75M
Brandon Webb, ARI SP $2.5M
Roy Halladay, TOR SP $12.75M
Roy Oswalt, HOU SP $11M
Chris Carpenter, STL SP $5M
Scot Shields, LAA RP $2.1M
Joel Zumaya, DET RP $327K
Aaron Heilman, NYM RP $359K
Scott Linebrink, SD RP $1.365M
Juan Rincon, MIN RP $900K
Francisco Rodriguez, LAA CL $3.775M
Total salary -- $48.826M

Of course, the Red Sox have the money to sign him and pay for the posting fee. They can certainly afford this and we'll see exactly what their intentions were with this bid in the next 30 days.

For the record, Jim Callis still likes Daisuke at that price.

It seems silly in some regards to consider Matsuzaka anything except an established (Japanese) major leaguer, but just as he'll be a rookie in MLB's eyes, he's a prospect in Baseball America's book until he exceeds 50 (U.S.) big league innings. He unquestionably would push Jacoby Ellsbury aside for the No. 1 spot on our Red Sox list, and he'd get my vote for No. 1 on the Top 100.

* * *

  • Keith Law ranks Barry Zito as the fifteenth (!!!!) best available free agent. That is just nuts. You may not think he is best player out there, but the fifteenth?

    Zito is a third or fourth starter with the reputation of a one or a two. In fact, over the last three years, he's struggled badly when facing the two premier offenses in the AL, posting a 6.59 ERA against Boston and the Yankees while walking 47 men and allowing 18 homers in 83.3 innings. His control is below-average; only Daniel Cabrera has walked more batters in the last two years than Zito has. And should Zito's stuff slip at all, he becomes a fifth starter or a guy who needs to head to the National League, the current destination for asylum-seekers who fear AL persecution of their fringy fastballs.

    Ouch man. Cold shit. Gil Meche, Ted Lilly, Jim Edmonds, Julio Lugo, JD Drew, and Andy Pettitte were all ranked above him. Very silly. In spite of Mr. Law's low opinion on Barry, the Mets are now targeting the lefty who is the best pitcher left out there now that Daisuke cannot be had.

  • Brandon Webb wins the Cy Young Award with Trevor Hoffman, Chris Carpenter, Roy Oswalt, and Carlos Zambrano rounding out the top five.

  • Sign early and sign often. That is the Cubs motto. After dishing out serious dollars on Aramis Ramirez, the Cubs sign Mark DeRos to a three year, $13 million contract. For the record, Keith Law said Ramirez was the best free agent out there this winter.

  • Wow. That new proposed stadium for the Athletics is all pretty and such.

  • $12 million for El Duque? $3.8 millon for Valentin with an option for $4.3? When I heard the Mets resigned The Duque for two years, I was not mad, but I was confused. My friend told me to stop complaining and he heard it was for $6 million for the entire contract. He talked me into thinking it was a good deal because for that money, he could come out the pen and be a solid reliever that could also start if needed. Now? The Mets are not paying him $6.5 million to come out of the bullpen. I don't like 40+ year old guys blocking young pitching. Personally, I only see the need for The Duque for two seasons (and the only way this makes sense) is if they do not bring back Glavine. I understand pitching depth, but I would have rather made some incentive laden offer to Mulder with a vesting option than give The Duque two years. Small thing to complain about? Maybe, but still odd in my opinion. Seems like a lot of money for him.

  • Rey Rey is back. Maybe...he still has to make the team.

  • Bill Shea will not be forgotten, but Bill Gallo needs to get with it.

    What is wrong with Shea Stadium, a name we have known since the baby Mets were born.

    When I heard that they had settled on this new name (I gag when I write it), I said, shame! Shame on you people who have disparaged the name of Shea!

    It's not right that this current Mets team, on its way to becoming a championship team, will have the Shea banner taken away.

    I will bet you that Casey Stengel, Gil Hodges and Bill Shea are all spinning in their graves.

    Bro...that $20 million is good enough to pay Beltran's salary and them some. Name each urinal in the stadium if you want after a company if they will pony some money up. I'm on board.

  • 11/13: Mesa tied Phoenix 5-5. Blake McGinley went two innings and allowed no runs while striking out three. Michel Abreu went 2 for 6 with an RBI and a run scored.
    11/14: Grand Canyon beat Mesa 14-5. Michel Abreu went 2 for 4 with his sixth homer, two RBIs, and a double.

    Anonymous Scott said...

    Man, $51 million?! Wow! I'm just blown away! This is A-Rod league bucks. I'm still wondering if they don't offer him a serious contract and he heads back to Nippon. Orwhat if they sign him then trade him for immense amounts of talent?

    Some people say that smoking too much pot has no effect, I say Keith Law proves otherwise.

    Looks like Omar is expecting Tommy to walk. Signing El Duque and expressing interest in Zito to Borat makes it look like the Braves have him coming back. I wonder if they trade Hampton to make room?

    Bringing back El Duque as a replacement for Traxx is a good move to fill the vacant 3 hole. He is a solid #3.

    12:03 AM

    Anonymous MikeinSpaininLA said...

    I'm gonna go ahead and second-guess Omar here. Of course, last year he could do no wrong and deserves some respect, as he pushed all the right buttons.

    NONETHELESS, Valentin and Duque? for 16 mil? I remember how great these two were in the playoffs. Fuckin' fantastic. And if Glavine's gone, then I kinda understand the Duque call - but can we not first try Heilman in the rotation? Why the reluctance on this still? Why not give the guy a shot in the rotation already. At worst he's a fifth, at best a second starter. I think he'd be better - next year - than Maine, Duque, Pelfrey, Perez or Humber.

    12:20 AM

    Blogger adenzeno said...

    Duque deal does not bother me, Valentin's a bit- could we NOT have made a play for DeRosa and platooned? or cobble together some no name prospects for Barfield(SD got screwed on that deal)- I like SChmidt and/or Padilla for 2 years and lots of $$ more than Zito (OR any pitcher not named Dontrelle) for 5 years

    8:34 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Yeah, that is just a crazy offer. But the I’ve seen speculation the Mets put up $28 million or $38 million. They came to play, but the Red Sox? Either they think this guy is the second coming or they were so afraid of the Yankees getting him.

    I’m not sure Law is smoking pot. I think he’s been huffing paint.

    I agree Scott. I just cannot see everyone come back. Seems like a crowded situation in the rotation when Pedro returns. I guess there will be many who say you cannot depend on the kids, but I think Maine has stepped up and proved himself as a known quantity and there are enough people to toss into the ring in terms of the last spot (last two for the first half of the year) to get some decent production. Seems like a lot of money being thrown around that doesn’t need to be. Of course, many argue I’m nuts and the Mets will be spending more than I think this season.

    I do not care about that one article by Gotham Baseball that said the Mets might consider starting Heilman. I do not think they want to do that and were probably trying to push up his value by making it look like they value him more. I cannot see Heilman doing anything but starting games here.

    Well DeRosa’s contract was more than he through he would get, hence signing right away after a career year. He thinks he won the lotto and he might have.

    Padilla wants 4/$40 and Schmidt is looking like he’ll get a deal similar to what Padilla wants. There is always a lack of pitching so I actually think Zito might actually end up being the best value. A long term deal for Schmidt scares me and I don’t think Padilla is all that good.

    9:01 AM

    Anonymous benny said...

    $51 million is alot of fucking money.
    Thats a nhumber I woudln't be comfortable dishing out despite my love and obsession with Dice-K.

    9:26 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Yeah man. $51 million is now in the territory of a Zito contract. It’s hard to see any pitching being worth $20 million per year.

    9:53 AM

    Anonymous joe said...

    What are the odds the rights fall to the second highest bidder, who reports say are the mets?

    10:21 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I don't think he can fall. The Red Sox are it. Unless they find some tampering or something which I do not think there was. Daisuke is going to the Red Sox or back to Japan this year to play ball. What reports did you hear? The Mets plunking down $38 million? Kudos to Omar and Wilpon for having the stones to do that if that is true. I still think they though he was the best pitcher on the market

    10:27 AM

    Anonymous seattle steve said...

    Our depth in pitching has a common theme, they are all 1st year players accept for Williams and Perez, we need the experience to show them the way and that is why el duque and glavine is needed. Pelfry and Humber will start most likely in new orleans and Bannister will be used as trade bait. With the way prices have escalated I like the idea of trying to get Cliff on the cheap.

    10:35 AM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Steve..I am not against Floyd. I’m not against Milledge going to New Orleans and having to play this way up to bigs. The Mets can sign Floyd in the hopes he has one last healthy year and get a one year stopgap while Carlos Gomez and Lastings Milledge get their AAA-on. With Green and Endy in the fold, they have the depth on the big league level to sit Floyd a good amount. If he goes down, Milledge is but a call away. The only issue, and this is not a small one, is how they are still susceptible to lefties. It was egregious not having Milledge on the playoff roster to simply teach him a lesson and carrying the always useless Michael Tucker. All of that being said, I’m willing to still roll the dice on Floyd again as long as the Mets ensure they have a right-handed bat on the bench come playoff time. I am not too concerned about them getting rolled over during the regular season.

    In regards to their pitching, the will still have two vets in the rotation to start the year and most likely three by the end of the year. I guess it boils down to whether the Mets know something about Pedro that we don’t know. From what we read, everything is going just swimmingly. If that is not the case, then I understand wanting to hedge his bets. I guess the worst thing that could happen is the obvious and too many good pitchers for too little spots. But no matter how good either Maine, Perez, or whomever is doing, they will get bumped in favor of The Duque and his $12 contract, which is my concern. I guess I will wait to get my panties on a bundle until they actually fully shape the rotation.

    11:40 AM

    Anonymous MikeinSpaininLA said...


    Assuming Sanchez is healthy (and Dirty), wouldn't you like to see Heilman in the rotation? Clearly, neither Pedro, Pelfrey or Humber will start the year in the rotation. So...1. Duque (if he stays healthy) 2. Perez (may or may not suck) 3. Glavine (if they resign him) 4. Maine 5. Zito (if they sign him)...

    Why not try out 1-hitter Heilman? If they alternative is Dave Williams or 30-million Padilla, the options seem clear.

    Another option, which ain't never gonna happen, is trading Wagner's 3 years/30 mil remaining and letting Heilman close...

    12:22 PM

    Anonymous Scott said...

    I like the idea of Heilman closing but he isn;t even happy with that. I really think he is serious trade bait. I wonder if San Diego would give us Linebrink in a trade for him? Send him to Tampa to pitch in the rotation! Then he will rethink whether or not he wants to be a Met reliever. Carl Crawford anyone?

    Do we still get draft picks if Glavine goes elsewhere? He is a type A FA correct.

    12:34 PM

    Anonymous Coop said...

    Heilman wants to start, sure...but can't he see for himself that he is WAAAAY more valuable as a reliever or primed to be an elite closer? He went to Notre Dame and all, can't be a doofus to get in. He should wise up and take the big pay day and the compliments.

    And of course... you all know how I feel about Zee-toe. Big hugs for everyone if we get him.

    12:40 PM

    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I think the rules for posting is the Sox have 30 days to sign him or he goes back to Japan, second place bidder has no rights. Sox can sign and trade him however.

    With boston spending $51 million just to negotiate and with Boras likely to demand an equal or greater amount as salary, one has to wonder if Boston will need to clear some room in payroll to do this.

    I wonder if Manny will be traded. I have to think yes. If he is available I have to think Omar will make some calls, I think he only has two years left on his deal, and I'm sure they can get Boston to eat $10 million of the $40 million due.

    Would you trade Lastings and one of the young sterters for him.

    The extra year is kind of crazy, but we learned at the end of the season and the post-season that you can never have too many arms and Duque was competent.

    Valentin is as good as anyone out there for 2B. He is old, but he proved he can be productive if they limit his AB's. They should try A-Hern against lefties he is a much better hitter righty than lefty.

    12:47 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    Mike..re-Heilman..I think most of us are interested in what he can do in the rotation. I’m with you in giving him a shot. What is the worst that can happen? I just think the Mets are just not going to move forward on that one. I think he’s destined to be a reliever with the Mets and that is it.

    That being said, there is always the chance he gets dealt. Boston wants him for their closer and could be used in a trade for Manny (not that I want that). Boston would have to kick in big dollars and I’m not sure $10 alone would cut it and I do not want to give up much more than Heilman. Milledge and Heilman? Never. I just do think the Mets need him bad enough to give up cheap and very good players. One of which is performing at a high level right now. When young talent is given up, it needs to be for young players.

    In regards to trading Mr. Billy Wags….they guy (for what it’s worth) did come in sixth in the Cy Young voting…granted with four points…but he had a great year. I’m not willing to hang him for the playoffs.

    I wouldn’t trade Heilman for Linebrink. I need more back. Both were one of the top righty relievers, but the Mets are just taking on salary for the same type of production. Not sure that makes sense. Now in a package for Peavy or Young, I’m listening. I’m willing to trade quite a few prospects for Peavy.

    If Glavine leaves we get nothing. The Mets are going to turn down their team option on the 20th (part of their handshake deal) and when you turn down an option, you cannot then turn around and offer the player arb.

    Well, I’m not ready to anoint Valentin as good as anyone out there, but I’ll agree there were a lot of options and none of them particularly spectacular. I’d still think about a Pedoria for Heilman deal.

    1:30 PM

    Anonymous benny said...

    Fucking cool. Rolls Royce Ring and Health Bell traded to the Padres for Jon Adkins and Ben Johnson.
    I like it. Why do I like it? Because its a trade and trades are cool. It makes Omar seem busy.

    2:05 PM

    Anonymous DG said...

    Ben Johnson could be this year's X, a guy with lots of talent that can benefit from a new opportunity. He may also allow the Mets to hold Milledge if they please and see how he develops or trade him.

    When reports came out yesterday claiming we resigned El Duque for $6 mill over two years, I immediately doubted the veracity of the reports. Way too little. $12 over two seems a bit high but not by much. I would have slotted him at $9 million for two, so $6 is the new $4.5 in my book.

    I have many misgivings when it comes to the Mets trading Heilman. Given Sanchez's injury, they really cannot afford to trade him nor even put him in the rotation. That may force the team to trade another young pitcher, but I'd really worry if they traded Humber or Pelfrey. My read is that Bannister goes as he has the lowest upside of the bunch.

    Boston has put themselves in an interesting situation. They may well pay Manny money for a pitcher. A mistake I think, but if he pitches at hype level, I'm sure everyone will forget the cash. I personally have a feeling they're going to regret this move. We'll see.

    I'm not as convinced on Zito, but I'm hoping they overpay for him as opposed to the underachievers they could sign for $9 - $10 million. I'd love if they'd nail it down soon, but I'm sure we get two months of having our insides pulled out.

    2:46 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I like Ben Johnson. Seems like a decent deal to me and it gives the Mets more outfield depth and a right handed bat with POP this year.

    2:46 PM

    Blogger mr. met said...

    I guess $6 mil is the new $4.5, but I think the market came down a tiny bit from the days of the Jeter/Arod/Manny....I guess we are seeing a slight up-tick, but I think we are still where we were two years ago for the most part with middle relievers being the ones who are seeing the big salary spikes.

    Heilman can still be traded though. As long as Riske and Speier are still out there, Omar can make a bold move in the right deal.

    If Daisuke has a like a 3.50 ERA or lower, a 9.0 k/9, and 15+ wins, no one will care about the money. However, for his sake, I hope that does well. A 4.00 ERA could spell major disaster for him in Boston.

    I'm not as convinced on Zito, but I'm hoping they overpay for him as opposed to the underachievers they could sign for $9 - $10 million. I'd love if they'd nail it down soon, but I'm sure we get two months of having our insides pulled out.

    Well said. He is still the best pitcher out there no matter how you shake it. Give me the extra few millions on the payroll and Zito and a cheaper guy in Padilla.

    No way Boras lets Zito off the market early unless 1) The A's do not offer him arb....2) Everyone else tells him they are 100% not interested. He'll still hold out hope desperation turns into big bucks. However, if Zito says "this is what I want to do", anything can happen, but he could have done that with anyone. He did not need to hire Boras in that case.

    2:56 PM

    Anonymous seattle steve said...

    The Heath Bell era is over, Omar does it again. Trading Heilman for something superior such as Willis or Peavey makes sense otherwise his value in the pen is to great to give up for cheap.

    3:10 PM

    Anonymous DG said...

    Fact that the Mets did the deal without shipping OPerez is a sign that they like him. The Friars - how bout the FryCooks? - had been real keen on getting him back and using him as a reliever. This was their opportunity, and that issue is gone.

    Mike, if we signed Zito - and assuming that Glavine comes back - I'd start stroking the pen and going with Maine & OPerez until Pedro, Pelfrey &/or Humber are ready. I wouldn't balk at Willis or Peavy but I don't see the need for either to be traded being young and affordable. Back on point, we would have the makings of a more than able rotation while holding on to the young guys who'll take us to the next level.

    Don't buy that arg on Heilman being tradeable with two relievers out there that we could overpay. He's going to be just as valuable in July when we know if Sanchez can come back, maybe more so. Plus, like it or not, Heilman just has no leverage here: he's cheap, durable and not yet arb eligible, so what exactly is the impetus? He could walk away, but that only hurts himself.

    My read on the relievers out there is that the average crop of middies will get more money than they deserve. You're better off trading for them than signing the FA's.

    5:55 PM


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