David Wright (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

David Wright (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

Item: The Mets officially announce David Wright’s contract extension.

Thoughts: David Wright should finish his career as a Met and own nearly all of the team’s career offensive records when he retires. And since he has a full no-trade clause, he doesn’t have to worry about being shipped off to Toronto next winter.

“I take a lot of pride in putting on this uniform on every day,” Wright said. “I take a lot of pride in going out there and trying to play hard in front of those fans every day. And there’s a lot of good times to come.”

Let’s hope he’s right, because as happy as I am to see Wright commit to the Mets, this deal doesn’t make the team better – it just keeps them from getting worse.

Item: The Mets could officially name Wright “team captain” this spring.

Thoughts: Titles are nice, but I think they’re mostly for the fans. Any baseball player that needs that little “C” on his jersey probably isn’t up to the leadership the role requires.

Jason Bay (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

Jason Bay (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

Item: It looks like the Mariners are really going to sign Jason Bay.

Thoughts: Well, I laughed when they signed Oliver Perez last off-season and it worked out reasonably well for them. I suppose this could, too. But as frustrated as I am by the Mets’ inability to acquire outfielders, I would be furious if Sandy Alderson came home from Nashville with Chone Figgins… and that’s kind of what Jack Zduriencik is doing here.  Could Mike Pelfrey be the next disappointing former Met to land in Seattle?

Items: Shane Victorino signs 3 year/$39 million deal with Boston, Angel Pagan gets 4 years/$40 million from the Giants

Thoughts: That’s a lot of money for some talented players with big question marks surrounding them. If that’s what it takes to land a decent free agent outfielder, I guess it might be a good thing that they’re out of the Mets’ price range. And if all the teams the Mets try to talk trades with keep asking for Zack Wheeler… well, I won’t be able to blame Alderson if the Opening Day outfield is Lucas Duda, Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Mike Baxter.

R.A. Dickey (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

R.A. Dickey (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

Item: There are a lot of rumors surrounding R.A. Dickey – who knows how true any of them are….

Thoughts: R.A. Dickey seems like a great person, and he’s a lot of fun to watch pitch. He’s also 38 years old – young in the grand scheme of things, but old for baseball pitchers not named Phil Niekro or Nolan Ryan. It’s pretty clear that the Mets will not be competitive in 2013, so while it would be fun to watch Dickey every fifth day, if the Mets can trade him for someone who would be able to help them in 2013, 2014 and 2015, they should do it. They also need to be careful to make sure Dickey doesn’t turn into the next Johan Santana or Jose Reyes. (I actually like Howard Megdal‘s idea to swap Dickey for Reyes.)

 

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About Paul Hadsall

I'm the former editor of a weekly community newspaper and current contributor to Hot Stove Baseball. I've been a New York Mets fan for most of my life and I've been blogging about them, minor league baseball, baseball cards and autograph collecting since 2007. Contact me at paul@randombaseballstuff.com

9 responses

  1. Freddy says:

    If the Mets don’t improve in the future Wright could become the Don Mattingly of the Mets. Darn that guy had bad timing.

    I’d like to see the fans reaction when Victorino returns to Philly in a Red Sox uniform.

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    • Paul says:

      I think that’s a very good comparison – Wright will probably retire without ever winning a World Series, and I’m not sure he’ll even make it back to the playoffs.

      Victorino should get an interesting reception from the Philly fans. (Did he make it back there this year as a Dodger?) The Boston fans will probably be tougher on him, though.

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      • Freddy says:

        The Dodgers were in Philly in June 2012; Victorino was traded just before the deadline.

        I have no clue what they are doing- they trade TWO home grown pitchers under team control. Whatever happened to you can never have enough pitching? I guess its worth it if Revere performs like a star.

        The Phillies are having their Christmas fair the weekend of December 15. Most of the Phillies broadcasting crew will be doing a meet and greet. I’m curious to see what kind of deals they will have. The best find last year was that binder of autographed photos which included Pedro Martinez. (It was tough to root for him that second half of 2009). He wound up the losing pitcher in two games of the 2009 World Series. Dickie Noles is also supposed to be there.

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  2. MJ says:

    Knuckleballers can pitch effectively until they are 50 and RA Dickey is only 38. The knuckleball puts zero strain on the arm. Plus he loves New York and New York loves him. I doubt you’re going to get any pieces of a championship team for him and you don’t trade your ace (and Dickey, right now, is the Mets ace). I’d rather trade Santana, myself, and Gee. Dickey, Niese, Harvey and Wheeler can hold down the rotation and you can probably find your fifth as a reclamation project. And I would hope to NEVER see Reyes as a Met again, frankly. And, if you did want him, you should be able to get him a lot cheaper than Dickey. History has shown that trading a Cy Young winner doesn’t get you much of value in return while the Cy Young winner continues to pitch well for years to come. Cliff Lee, Roy Hallyday, CC Sabathia, Tom Seaver…other than the last, can you even remember what the trading team got for them? Nothing of value, that’s for sure.

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    • Paul says:

      Tim Wakefield, the oft-sited example of knuckleballers pitching into their 40s, had a 49-46 record for the Red Sox after he turned 40. Leaving aside his final year in Boston, they were a playoff caliber team every year, too. I guess you could call him “effective” but I would not have wanted to pay him $12-$15 million per year like it will probably take to re-sign R.A. Dickey.

      Dickey also throws a lot harder than any of the other knuckleball pitchers – I don’t think it’s fair to say the pitch puts zero strain on the arm the way he throws it.

      Finally, if you think R.A. Dickey has zero value to other teams, please explain why someone would take Johan Santana?

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      • MJ says:

        Tim Wakefield for never an ace. He was always–his entire career–a back of the rotation guy. I think a comparison to Phil Niekro or Hoyt Wilhelm has more validity. I don’t think anyone will be offering Dickey 12-15 million, and I think he’d take less than that to stay in New York. I think, on the open market, you could probably get as much for Santana. He wore down this year, coming back from surgery, but I think he will probably be as effective as he was in the first half for another full season or two. But he’s far more likely to break down than the knuckleballer. The reason Dickey’s knuckle is so much harder than others is his physiology–he’s missing certain tendons or whatever in his arm. The knuckleball, however hard you throw it, puts zero strain on the arm. It’s the nature of the pitch. And I didn’t say Dickey has zero value; I just said I don’t think you’ll get anything of real value back. Top of the mark, you get a package similar to Steve Henderson, Dan Norman and Doug Flynn, and likely not that much. I don’t make that trade. I wouldn’t with Seaver, Cliff Lee, Roy Hallyday or any of them. History shows you trade an ace, you get very little in return. If you’ve got an ace, you keep them if you can. Hallyday was gone anyway, Lee maybe also. Seaver would’ve stayed but M. Donald Grant was an idiot and a cheap bastard. I think–I hope–Alderson is smarter than that.

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  3. Paul says:

    MJ: Dickey had one Cy Young year, and two pretty good ones. I think Tim Wakefield is a better comparison than a pair of Hall of Famers, but I really think he’s unique.

    If the Mets can sign him to an affordable contract, I’d love to see Dickey finish his career in New York. But the media reports suggest that he’s looking for money in the $12-$15 million per year range, and that’s too much for a team with limited resources to commit to a player who will be 39 when his current contract expires. (And before you say no one would give him that much on the open market, look at the silly contracts handed to guys like Jeff Keppinger and Marco Scutaro this week.)

    If Sandy Alderson had a great trade proposal in front of him, I’m sure he would have already pulled the trigger. If Dickey was willing to settle for an affordable extension, I’m sure he would have been signed already.

    If it comes down to one more year of R.A. Dickey or the 2012 equivalent of Steve Henderson, Doug Flynn & Pat Zachary, I’d rather make the trade, that’s all.

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  4. markruck says:

    Paul,

    Remember that Dickey throws two knucklers, one a pretty hard one and which no other pitcher in my memory has ever thrown. Though he’s missing a ligament in his pitching arm and which apparently lessens the strain on it, unlike a Wakefield type, who can throw 70 MPH “cripples” up there seemingly forever, throwing the hard one *could* decrease Dickey’s shelf life.

    As much I’d like to keep him around and he could be a more than serviceable pitcher for the next half dozen years, I’m afraid that this past season might be the one in where he had/has the most value and this might be the best time to get some quality youngsters in return. The Mets aren’t going to contend for the next few years, so now might be the best time to reload.

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  5. Paul says:

    Freddy:

    I like Ben Revere – he’s a good defender with speed. If he can improve his on-base percentage a little bit, he could be a younger, cheaper Michael Bourn. Vance Worley has health questions and I’m not convinced Trevor May will ever really learn how to pitch. Long term, Minnesota might get the better of the deal, but I don’t think it’s a bad one for the Phillies.

    Have fun if you make it to the Phillies Christmas fair next weekend.

    Mark:

    Whatever trade value R.A. Dickey has, it’s clearly at it’s highest now. If a team wants him badly enough to offer a young player with star potential, I make the trade. If I know I can’t sign Dickey to a reasonable contract extension, I trade him for whatever I can get. If nobody makes a great trade offer & I can sign Dickey to a reasonable contract extension, I’d like to keep him. I have a feeling that we’re going to have to wait for Zack Grienke to make a decision before anything is going to happen.

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