Friday, January 17, 2014

Mets avoid arbitration with five

The Mets have avoided arbitration with the following players: Ike Davis, Daniel Murphy, Bobby Parnell, Eric Young Jr., and Ruben Tejada. Two players, Dillon Gee and Lucas Duda, have yet to reach a settlement with the team. 

Tejada will earn $1.1 million in 2014, which is a slight salary raise from last year's campaign. Sandy Alderson has stated that Tejada may start the season as the team's regular shortstop, despite their reported interest in free agent Stephen Drew. 

The 24 year old infielder hit .202/.259/.260 in 57 games for the Mets in 2013. He was demoted to Triple-A Las Vegas early on in the season, and came back up in September, only to break his leg in a collision with outfielder Andrew Brown.

Davis and the Mets have agreed on a $3.5 million salary for 2014. The 26 year old slugger struggled mightily in 2013, as he hit .205/.326/.334 with only 9 home runs in 103 games. Like Tejada, he was also demoted to the minor leagues during the season. With the 51s, he managed to put up better numbers as he hit .293/.424/.667 in a brief 21 game stint.

The Mets have been shopping Davis all winter long, but haven't found an offer to their liking yet. Right now it appears that they are content with leaving him on the roster, and giving him the opportunity to be the star he was once sought out to become.

Eric Young Jr., acquired from Colorado in a mid-season waiver swap, hit .251 in 91 games with the Mets. He also had 38 stolen bases with New York, and a total of 46 swiped bags on the year, which led the National League. 

He will earn $1.85 million in 2014, but his role with next year's squad is still unknown. It's possible he could see time out in center field next year, giving Juan Lagares occasional days off, or even second base if need be.

Bobby Parnell has agreed to a $3.7 million settlement with an extra $50,000 bonus if he appears in 60 or more games. The 29 year old closer had a 2.16 ERA with 22 saves last year, but his season was cut short after he underwent surgery for a herniated disk in early September. 

Murphy had a solid 2013 season, as he hit .286 in 161 games for the team. He will earn $5.7 million next year, which is a salary raise of about $3 million. He can earn an extra $50,000 if he reaches 500 plate appearances. 

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Mets invite 20 non-roster players to Spring Training

The Mets have invited 20 non-roster players to major league Spring Training. The list of players goes as follows:


Chase Bradford
Joel Carreno
John Church
Jeremy Hefner
Rafael Montero
Miguel Socolovich
Noah Syndergaard
Cory Mazzoni
Logan Verrett


Adam Kolarek
Jack Leathersich


Taylor Teagarden
Kevin Plawecki


Brandon Allen
Eric Campbell
Anthony Seratelli
Daniel Muno


Dustin Lawley
Cory Vaughn
Brandon Nimmo

Mets sign Taylor Teagarden

The Mets have signed catcher Taylor Teagarden to a minor league deal with an invite to Spring Training. His contract will be worth $750,000 if he reaches the big leagues. 

Also, he would receive a $25,000 bonus for each of 60 and 80 games spent on the roster, and he has a clause in his contract that allows him to opt out if he is not called up by June 15. 

Teagarden, a former third round pick, hit .167 in a brief stint with the Orioles last season. Over the course of his 6 year career, he has slugged 20 homers with 63 RBI in 163 total games.

He was designated for assignment by Baltimore on September 1st, but cleared waivers and was sent to Triple-A Norfolk.

Teagarden is simply a depth player, given that he provides what most fringe players would bring to the table. He is very similar to Anthony Recker in that he has some pop to his bat, but plays below-average defense and isn't cut out to be an everyday regular. 

Right now, the catching depth chart most likely goes as follows:

1. Travis d'Arnaud
2. Anthony Recker
3. Teagarden/Centeno
4. Teagarden/Centeno

Teagarden's only real shot at reaching the Major Leagues is if he battles out Anthony Recker in Spring Training, or if one of the top 2 catchers gets injured during the season. 

Friday, December 27, 2013

Mets have high asking price with Davis

The Mets have spoken to multiple teams this off-season about Ike Davis, and have yet to find any sort of agreement. The Orioles, Brewers, and Pirates are reportedly the three teams most interested in the 26 year old slugger. The Mariners had initial interest in him as well, but went on to acquire Logan Morrison and Corey Hart to fill their void instead. 

Just like Sandy Alderson has done in the past, he has held out in negotiations to ensure that he gets what he needs. Two years ago he did this with the Carlos Beltran-for-Zack Wheeler swap, and last December he managed to acquire two big-named prospects (d'Arnaud and Syndergaard) as well as others for R.A. Dickey. Here, the difference is the Mets do not have too much leverage with these Davis talks, since he didn't exactly have a great season by any means in 2013. 

Earlier this winter, it was reported that the team was pushing to acquire pitcher Tyler Thornburg from Milwaukee in a one-for-one swap. The Brewers, however, declined the offer, but this was before Corey Hart landed in Seattle, so perhaps they felt like they still had a chance to bring him back.

Thornburg, a 25 year old starter, had a fair amount of success in 2013, posting a 2.03 ERA in 18 major league appearances, 7 of which were starts. With the varsity squad he filled the swing-man role for some time, and in Triple-A he struggled. With the Nashville Sounds he had an ugly 5.79 ERA in 15 starts. 

From a Mets point of view, Thornburg would've actually been a solid return for Davis. Apparently Milwaukee was hesitant to buy into the Ike Davis hype, so they held onto Thornburg, but I can see the two teams still coming together for a trade. 

The most recent trade rumor with Davis involved the Orioles, and was surprising to say the least. They reportedly attempted to acquire young prospect Eduardo Rodriguez from Baltimore in exchange for Davis. Rodriguez, 20, ranked 3rd on the Orioles' 2013 Top prospect list, according to He had a combined 3.41 ERA in 25 starts with Baltimore's Single-A and Double-A affiliates last year. projects that he will be up in the Majors in 2014, and has the potential to be a finesse lefty starter once he blossoms.  

That's a steep price to ask for, but I don't disagree with Alderson's tactic here. Davis can be an exceptional player when he's at his "A" game, and shouldn't be just dealt away for the sake of getting rid of him. I still feel like he will ultimately be traded off, especially after the long-off season of trade rumors that have surrounded him. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Mets claim Reid off of waivers

The Mets have claimed pitcher Ryan Reid off of waivers from the Pirates. Reid, 28, was designated for assignment by Pittsburgh sometime last week. 

Reid made his major league debut in 2013, where he posted a 1.64 ERA in 11 innings of work. He spent most of the year in Triple-A, however, posting a 2.73 ERA in 59 1/3 innings pitched.

Reid was originally drafted by Tampa Bay in 2006, and remained with the organization until 2012. He then inked a deal with Pittsburgh. 

The right-hander has a combined 3.87 ERA in 308 career minor league games. 

This has the potential to be a very solid signing by the Mets here. They are taking a good approach in building this bullpen, as they are adding players that they hope will catch lightning in a bottle. Reid presents a no-risk, potential high-reward player, and should be given every opportunity to make the team out of camp. 

His minor league numbers demonstrate good strikeout numbers, but his walk ratio (career 3.7 BB/9) may show a little of a control problem. Either way, this seems to be a nice addition to the team, and considering all he needs is a roster spot, there is really no danger in bringing him in the mix. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Mets to meet with agents for Axford and Gregg

The Mets plan to meet with agents for free agent relievers John Axford and Kevin Gregg. As well as them, the team has also been linked to Chris Perez and Mitchell Boggs. 

Axford, 30, split the 2013 season with Milwaukee and St. Louis, posting a combined 4.02 ERA in 75 relief appearances. He played significantly better in his brief stint with the Cardinals, as he had a 1.74 ERA in 13 games. 

From 2010-2012, the right-hander was known as one of the more dominant closers in the game, putting up a 3.04 ERA during that time while notching 105 saves. There have been some criticisms over his control, as he does sport a 4.0 BB/9 ratio, but his strong strikeout numbers (career 10.8 K/9) tend to overshadow that. 

Gregg, an 11 year veteran, spent the entire 2013 season with the Cubs organization, and had a solid comeback season. The 35 year old had a 3.48 ERA in 62 relief appearances, while racking up 33 saves and finishing 52 games.
He put up similar numbers back in his prime with the Marlins from 2007-2008. During that time, he posted a 3.48 ERA with 61 saves in 146 relief appearances. 

The Mets are clearly concerned about Bobby Parnell heading into the 2014 season. As you recall, he underwent neck surgery that ended his 2013 season a little early, but it was expected that he would be ready for Opening Day of this coming season. 

To me, Axford is the more appealing option, simply because of his track record. Not too long ago he was one of the best closers in the game for the Brewers, but after a year and a half of so-so numbers, he was dealt to the Cardinals and seemed to rediscover himself. I would take him on an incentive-based deal, and give him the opportunity to close some games if Parnell isn't ready. 

Of-course, it's worth mentioning that Vic Black will be in the running for some sort of late-inning role for the Mets next year. Bringing in a veteran like Axford, Gregg, etc., could prove to help Black out quite a bit in his development. 

Mets to sign Bartolo Colon

The Mets will sign pitcher Bartolo Colon to a two year deal worth $20 million. The deal is pending a physical.

Colon, 40, went 18-6 with an impressive 2.65 ERA with Oakland last season. There was interest in a reunion between Colon and the Athletics, but that faded away when the club inked Scott Kazmir to a multiyear deal. 

Fangraphs valued Colon at 3.9 WAR in 2013, whereas Baseball Reference labeled him at 5.0 WAR. The 16 year veteran has a combined 3.94 ERA in his career while playing for Cleveland, Montreal, the White Sox, Angels, Red Sox, Yankees, and Athletics. He is a four-time All-Star, and won the Cy Young award in 2005 as a member of the Angels.

The Mets had been searching for a veteran pitcher to eat up some innings in 2014, but this signing comes as a surprise. Not only is Colon an extremely effective option, he will now be locked up at a reasonable price. Last year he managed to put up that 2.65 ERA against tough competitors in the American League, so one could imagine how his numbers who be in the National League. 

I'm very pleased by this signing. Colon isn't going to be the team's ace, but he'll be very serviceable in the middle of the rotation, and despite the old age and weight problems, I have a hunch that he'll turn in a very solid 2014 season, and perhaps look at being dealt next winter depending on where the Mets are in their rebuilding effort.

The Mets have signed three Major League caliber players this winter, totaling at a combined $31 million. It is predicted that they will now shop Ike Davis and/or Daniel Murphy to try and clear some payroll space, and perhaps look at a more expensive shortstop option such as Stephen Drew, as well as bring in some veteran relievers.