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

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Boy, that escalated quickly... I mean, that really got out of hand fast!

Is anyone buying this?

“I had a long talk with Barry the other day and I told him that this move is not about money,” Joe said. “It’s about nothing other than legacy.”

In theory that sounds nice. However, you do not fire your agent and bring in Scott Boras to not make a move based on money. Zito could retire today and still have plenty of money for the rest of his life as he has brought in $18,035,000 in his seven year career. In those seven years, he has averaged 14.57 wins and that includes his rookie season when he threw in only fourteen games. Since his rookie season, he has average 15.8 wins per season. We've already heard about Barry Zito's aspirations to be a Hall of Fame pitcher and we'll see if he really means that.

The only shot Barry has of making the Hall of Fame is notching 300 wins. His 102 wins at the age of 28 is certainly impressive, but he'll need to average 14.14 wins over the next fourteen years to attain that goal of his (Glavine had 108 wins through age 28 after eight years of baseball and ten more starts than Barry). That is not exactly easy to say the least, but for a durable lefty that can probably throw into his early forties, it is not impossible. Improbable? Yes. Impossible? A tick below impossible, but not impossible. Dayn Perry basically echoes the sentiments a lot of us have been bellowing out and that is the New York Mets and Barry Zito go together like a hooker and track marks.

Zito's prone to the longball, but Shea is a brutal park for power hitters (particularly right-handed power hitters) and will help to mask that deficiency. If Zito winds up a Cub or Ranger, he's going to get lit up. For Zito to succeed his home park needs to be a pitcher's environment. The Mets need durability, and Zito needs a forgiving park and a slick defensive outfield. It's a match.

If Barry comes to the Mets, it is completely reasonable to think he can notch 80 to 85 wins over the next five years while the Mets figure to be a 90-100 win team in each of those seasons. The deeper you go into games the better shot you have at winning games and Barry is no stranger to going deep into games. Furthermore, I've said that I think he could drop a year like his 2002 season with sub 3.00 ERA and 24 wins or so. At the ripe age of 33, Barry could be in the neighborhood of 185 wins with plenty of years left on his arm to pitch. If Barry is serious about his legacy and a legitimate play at the Hall of Fame, the only team that has showed interest in him this off season that can help him get to that goal is the Mets.

Teams like the Mariners and the Rangers are chasing Barry and that scares me. That scares me because the Mariners are desperately trying to make all the money they've sunk into Adrian Beltre and Richie Sexson look good by actually winning and they are trying to build a better team so they can keep Ichiro around after his contract expires. Bringing in solid pitcher can help pile on some wins, but the Mariners are far more than one ace away. The Mariners did win 78 games last year and if they can improve their staff, they might get over that hump and at least keep in the AL West race until the final weeks of the season.

The Rangers epitomize desperation after trading Adrian Gonzalez and Chris Young only to see them look like cornerstones of the Padres franchise and trading Mench, Nix, and Cordero for Carlos Lee when they really were not good enough to contend for the AL West crown only to see him leave for greener pastures. Daniels needs to do something big and I'm not talking about signing Vincente Padilla. Getting Zito will give the natives a little less to be restless about, but I'm sure that would all change as soon as the mediocrity continues. Jon Daniels wants to make a power move and Omar has repeatedly said he will not get into a bidding war. If Daniels will go six years at $102 million ($17 million annually), you can be sure Zito will be giving up forty long balls in Arlington in 2007.

Things have really started to get away from everyone this off-season and with Lilly possibly tabbed to get $11 to $12 million per year, I'm starting to really consider plan B for the Mets and their starting rotation.

* * *

  • The new Bloc Party single sounds pretty fucking amazing. Listen to it and revel in it's glory.

  • In case you missed it...

    "It's disappointing, to say the least," La Russa added. "We were rooting for the Detroit Tigers just like everyone else."

    According to Cardinals players, they "tried absolutely everything" in their pursuit to earn the Tigers their first world championship since 1984, including eliminating the far more dangerous New York Mets in the NLCS, entering the series completely unrested after a grueling seven-game series, starting a rookie pitcher with five career wins in Game 1 in Detroit, and postponing Game 4 due to rain in the hopes that an off day would swing the momentum back in the Tigers' favor.

    "I don't know what we could've done differently," second-baseman Ronnie Belliard said. "We gave the Tigers every opportunity to win ballgames, but when their pitchers keep making errors on simple ground balls, what are we supposed to do, pretend we forgot the rules and start running to third base?"

    Desperate for a Tigers win in Game 2, the Cardinals chose to overlook the fact that starter Kenny Rogers was pitching with the aid of a foreign substance on his left hand.

    "Of course we all knew it was pine tar, but it seemed like they were finally finding their rhythm… We certainly didn't want to shake their confidence, so we decided to just let it go," La Russa said. "Frankly, if the umpires didn't bring it up, we probably would've let him pitch with it the whole game."


    Classic...
  • 30 Comments:

    Anonymous DG said...

    My Zito confidence index has been falling for a bunch of days. $17 million just doesn't make much sense over six years, and if the Rangers are going to pay that, then they will have BZ. The Mets could conceivably offer that sort of yearly salary over a shorter term agreement, but I'm not sure they want to block that much money for anyone who doesn't play everyday. At the same time, the quality of major league pitching is spread so thin that a high quality pitcher may have more value than we think.... at least in this market.

    I was happy to see that Omar has started talking about getting players he can control for more than one season if he is going to trade his own young players. The whole ChiSox/Mets dalliance, mostly a media confabulation with traces of actual conversation between the teams, has been super annoying. The Mets trading Humber or Pelfrey is almost akin to the trade of the dreaded one whose name we must not utter, but then, Omar would never get fleeced like that. Vasquez, Garcia are not stellar pitchers, falling behind BZito in the grand scheme of things, and the Mets were unwilling to trade Lastings & Aaron for him.

    Any Met deal for an upper level starter is going to include Milledge & Brian Bannister, but honestly, how many upper level starters are there that will be available? All of the young ones are locked into deals that look good in this market (for example Peavy) or are still merely in their arbitration years (ex., Willis). I think this is a hard market to get equal value.

    That said, I don't think that the last graph justifies overspending for Zito. The Mets have several pitchers who are near major league ready, and it may turn out advantageous to sign someone, say, like Jason Marquis as a stopgap than parting with a high end pitching prospect. All these articles mentioning Pelfrey & Humber are bunk.

    So, legacy or no, I just don't see this as a very promising market on either front. The offense that Omar has put together can support young, somewhat inconsistent pitching. It doesn't look pretty to have Glavine starting opening day, but in the long run that may be the best thing that can happen in 2007.

    3:53 AM

     
    Anonymous John in RI said...

    Mike,

    Did he just mention Jason Marquis??? WTF?? I'm not sure I can read your blog anymore if that happens....man....I just don't knywetrqgdsoaoLSDQO$#$#....sorry, just threw up in my mouth a little....

    Anyway, MLB is sporting a new hot rumor, and one that I like: Milledge for Mark Buehrle. That I could deal with. Only potential problem is this is his walk year, so I would want to be able to sign him to an extension if we went down that road; but this is definitely better than Vazquez or Garcia.

    Scott Boras - Fuck you my friend, fuck you.

    6:29 AM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Well said DG...though I cannot agree with Marquis, but someone of that ilk might be better than $17,000,000 for Zito over six years. I want Zito, but on fair terms. Contrary to popular belief, the Mets are not desperate. I like the rotation as is. I think John Maine is the real deal. I think someone will step up from Perez, Humber, or Pelfrey (who has his improved breaking pitch).

    Zito is gravy, but not a necessity. The Mets are in a good spot.

    Burhle (sp?) for Milledge? Done, done and done.

    Omar should approach the trade market like he doesn't have to upgrade, which is essentially true. A bonus? Yes. A necessity? No. He's in a good spot with Glavine back. A lesser rotation went seven games with the WS champs and atually pitched well. Sub Duque for Traxx and you might have a different ending.

    8:22 AM

     
    Anonymous benny said...

    i find it kinda coincidential that all this talk about a legacy finally comes up while he's a free agent. While I do believe him its just too convenient

    I love the Onion.

    I dunno about Buehrle. He's a FA after 2007 and no way in hell I'm trading Milledge for 1 year of a declining Buehrle.

    10:18 AM

     
    Anonymous seattle steve said...

    If Zito winds up in Seattle you can knock me over with a feather, what is really killing the market is guys like meche,lilly and padilla are asking and getting 10 mil, if they can get that Zito can get the 16-17 mil, to me Oswalt $$$ is his value, offer a 5 year 75 mil contract w/ 6th year option. If we can't sign him then do nothing, you do not trade controlable talent for one year over priced, past there prime pitchers.

    10:48 AM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Well, the idea would be to keep Marky B, no? The Mets should be able to retain his services and I'd rather get him than the other two guys. Kenny Williams is just asking for way too much for any of this players, but I think that is the better of all the deals I've heard including the Chi Sox.

    meche,lilly and padilla are asking and getting 10 mil, if they can get that Zito can get the 16-17 mil

    I know. It's pissing me off. Pedro's contract doesn't look so bad? These guys are getting Pedro Money. Padilla's contract with the option is almost the same and Lilly's will be too. Scary stuff.

    to me Oswalt $$$ is his value, offer a 5 year 75 mil contract w/ 6th year option.

    100% agree. Throw that out and let it sit there and perculate. If they want the money, go somewhere else. If they still want a lot of money and legacy, take it.

    10:57 AM

     
    Anonymous Danny said...

    The American League hit .343 off Buehrle in the second half of last year. His ERA was a sparkling 6.33 after the All-Star Break. Those are terrifying numbers. I would rather just go with what we got than trade our best positional prospect for a possible declining soft-tossing lefty who has a lot of miles on his arm and may be on a swift decline. And if Buehrle makes the deal worth it and has a bounceback year, then we have to give him Zito money to retain him. I would MUCH rather sign Zito.

    I think we will match the highest annual salary Zito is offered but only go with 4 years with perhaps a reasonable option tagged on. I could live with 4/68 for Zito. I think that is what Omar has in mind. Zito would have an interesting decision to make if Omar went this route.

    11:44 AM

     
    Anonymous Danny said...

    Stupid typo... Buerhle's second half ERA was actually 6.44

    I gave him a little too much credit.

    11:44 AM

     
    Anonymous Scott from Peekskill said...

    As much as I like Buerhle I think Garcia is the best pitcher on that staff. Look at his second half performance. He was the best pitcher in the AL post all-star break and September he was amazing.

    But agreed, no trade unless we get extension. Milledge for one year of any pitcher is plain rude.

    One rumor I heard is that Jason Jennings is available and Omar is really interested.

    12:01 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Ok, you've convinced me. Milledge for Marky B. sucks. However, 4/$68 doesn't get Zito in my mind.

    Next plan...

    12:01 PM

     
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    All month I have been feeling that Omar looked at Zito as Plan B. He is just not that enamored with him which is why he did not wine him and dine him like he did with Wagner, Beltran, Pedro. This was made even clearer with Glavine re-signing. Zito is not an ace - being 4 yrs removed from his best season. However, his agent will try to sell him like an ace especially given the really weak FA class.

    I think Omar likes Zito, but feels Boras will be able to get him too much money and more importantly for the Mets too many years. I feel like Minaya is not comfortable giving a pitcher more than 4 years. Too many injury risks even for a workhorse like Zito. For every Glavine there are dozens of Zambrano's.

    However, I think Zito wants to pitch for the Mets more than Texas or Seattle. If he is concerned with legacy, no way his legacy is enhanced pithing in Arlington. Seattle has a nice park, but they are a few years away from contention.

    Of course his agent could care less about legacy.

    Bottom line Omar likes him, doesn't love him, feels that he can do comparably in trade market and he will try to make something happen there. He will probably make an initial offer this week of 4 years around $60 million just to show there is interest.. See what he can do on the trade front for the next few weeks. Boras will probably keep Zito out there, because given the huge demand for starting pitching and limited supply, a lot of teams will be looking to acquire pitching, but very few have pitchers to trade. Once the trade market cools then Boras will look to sign Zito.

    If Omar still does not have a trade, he will try to up thhe dollars to $17 million to $18 million per year without increasing the years. I just don't think Omar will go to 5 years. Afraid of precedent.

    If Texas offer is real, no way Boras lets him take smaller deal.

    Adam

    12:19 PM

     
    Anonymous Danny said...

    I agree with Adam. Since Omar got Alou for one year when everyone else was offering 2 years with options and such, he has the cocky walk thing going on (as he should). He knows NY is a hot place to go now. He won't budge from 4 years. I would be shocked if he did.

    12:30 PM

     
    Anonymous Scott from Peekskill said...

    I don't mind giving Zito $14-15m per, no more. If he wants a longer contract that is no problem. Giving less bucks over a longer period is the smart move. Look at Pedro's contract. Everyone said 12mill was way too much but if he was healthy and hit the market today he would hit the 18mil range.

    give him 15 for 7 years.

    12:32 PM

     
    Anonymous Farva said...

    Does Rick Peterson have input into who Omar goes after? If so who would he pick?

    Obviously Zito but who else?

    12:34 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Adam, I agree with all of what you said (dead on) until the end. No way Omar goes up to $17 to $18 million. Like you said, he likes him, but won't go crazy for him. He values him at $13 or $14 million. If he wants to play for a winner? He can be rich and play for a winner. If he wants to make money and lose, he can do that too. It's up to him, but the Mets will make a trade before they open up their wallets that much.

    If Texas offer is real, no way Boras lets him take smaller deal.

    I think we all agree on that one.

    Danny, I think he'd budge to go five years and maybe a team option. The team options that won't get picked up seem to placate Boras sometimes....but a team option at 17 or 18 might not be bad by the time that comes around.

    Scott...$15 for 7? Yikes. I'd go five and an option...maybe a vesting option even just to make it look like they have little say in the matter.

    Farva...No one. I'm sure they like Meche a bit and Lilly, but at the prices that are getting flown around? No way. They don't want to overpay for Zito and they certainly do not want to overpay for the lower tier...if you were going to give Lilly or Meche 11 or 12...just spend the extra five and get Zito. They have their limits and rightfully are sticking to them.

    If not Zito, then it's tradesville.

    1:27 PM

     
    Anonymous rick m said...

    It's mind-boggling how every inconceivable contract looks like a bargain after such a short period of time. Marvin Miller should be going into the Hall of Fame all by himself this year, when guys like Vincente Padilla and Gil Meche are getting $10 million a year. The fact is, Shea Stadium has a bigger effect on the quality of the Mets starting pitching than anyone toeing the rubber. In the last 10 years, there have only been four Met starters whose ERA was over 4.50 with more than 150 innings pitched, and only once did the team finish in the bottom half of the league ERA leaders. And that's not with too many impressive arms. And most of those years didn't feature a gold glove center fielder. Omar is a smart guy, the Mets will win 90 games with Glavine, Maine, Duque, Oliver and Pelfry/Humber/Bannister. When the out of contention clubs start dealing guys in July, then we should be shoring things up for the playoff run. Until then, let Seattle have Barry Zito.

    1:33 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    Well said.

    1:37 PM

     
    Anonymous Danny said...

    If Texas offer is real, no way Boras lets him take smaller deal

    I actually disagree with that. First off, it's not Boras' job to tell Zito where to go. It's his job to lay out to Zito the best offers he can possibly get from every team, and then ask his client which offer he prefers. If it's the most money, so be it, if it is a better team where you can enhance your Hall of Fame chances but with less years and less money, so be it.

    Let's for forget, Boras offered Beltran to the Yankees at a discount at the last minute before Beltran signed with the Mets.

    1:37 PM

     
    Blogger mr. met said...

    First off, it's not Boras' job to tell Zito where to go. It's his job to lay out to Zito the best offers he can possibly get from every team, and then ask his client which offer he prefers.

    If he wanted to do that, he could have used just any old agent. If you go with Boras, you are trying to get a silly contract.

    I will say, good point on the Beltran thing, but I'm sure we do not know the entire story.

    1:54 PM

     
    Anonymous brian b said...

    Agent Scott Boras has told teams free agent Barry Zito will require at least a six-year deal, and the Mets aren't believed to want to go past four or five years.
    That's about how it figured to work. Zito may already have six years and $102 million on the table from the Rangers, so the Mets will have to go at least five seasons, probably at $16 million per year. The Mariners could also end up in that territory, though it's unclear whether Zito is interested in pitching in Seattle.


    thats off rotoworld.com, so I don't know if we should get our hopes too high. Allthough perhaps a 4 year deal with 2 CLUB option years might be something the mets could work out, or if they vest with specific parameters?

    2:09 PM

     
    Anonymous Jason from Staten Island said...

    Hey, guys, I'm from Staten Island and you vomit? Wait, I just saw my ERA. Where's the toilet?

    3:50 PM

     
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I think if the trade market can not get him what he needs, Omar could go to $17 million with team options for future years, However I shudderred just typing those numbers.

    As far as the Texas offer, if this is true its insane, isn't this the team that had to eat like $50 million of A-Rod's money. How could the same team make the same mistake twice and sign the TWO worst contracts in baseball history.

    Hicks had to have inherited his money, because nobody could make enough money to buy a baseball team and be that stupid. Perhaps W is still secretly running the Rangers.

    Adam

    4:24 PM

     
    Anonymous Screamin DG said...

    "Perhaps W is still secretly running the Rangers."

    I just want everyone to consider that.

    4:52 PM

     
    Anonymous John in RI said...

    I know I am in the monority, but I still think Zito ends up with the fucking Yankees. That is where he truly wants to play, and they have been too quiet. Just my gut feeling there.

    As far as a trade, I read that the Angels are shopping Ervin Santana. Why have we not expolred this option. Dude can pitch.

    6:16 PM

     
    Anonymous jake said...

    c'mon that's not really being fair to the rangers.

    amen on Ervin -- i'm still hopeful we come out of this with an undercover stud. although zito is fine.

    7:43 PM

     
    Anonymous John in RI said...

    SI.com is reporting that the Mets traded Bannister for Ambiorix Burgos of the Royals. Awesome move. Kid is a stud.

    10:45 PM

     
    Anonymous jake said...

    like blanton.

    11:42 PM

     
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Ambiorix Burgos from the Kansas City Royals in exchange for right-hander Brian Bannister, although a source indicated the transaction -- while close -- was not final.

    Burgos, 22, was 4-5 with 18 saves and a 5.52 ERA in 68 appearances for Kansas City in 2006. In 73 1/3 innings, Burgos allowed 83 hits and 29 runs (28 earned), walking 37 and striking out 72.

    from mlb.com

    11:57 PM

     
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