R.A. Dickey's rise from journeyman to 37-year-old first-time All-Star and NL Cy Young Award winner soon may have another twist -- a new employer.
An official familiar with the discussions told ESPNNewYork.com that he expected Dickey to be traded by the New York Mets as soon as Friday.
"If I was in Vegas, then I would put some money on it," the source said, "but the way this situation has gone, you never know."
Said one baseball executive: "We're at that sensitive spot."
The Toronto Blue Jays and Los Angeles Angels are among the potential landing spots for Dickey, according to a major league executive whose team has pursued Dickey. A source tells ESPNDallas.com that Texas Rangers are no longer pursuing Dickey.
The Mets have been unsuccessful so far in reaching agreement with Dickey on an extension. The knuckleballer is under contract at $5 million for next season.
Sources have told ESPN.com that Dickey seeks two additional years at a combined $26 million to $28 million on top of the existing money he is owed. The Mets have countered at two years and $20 million, a source added.
If dealt, Dickey would become only the fourth reigning Cy Young Award winner in major league history to start the following season with a new team via trade, joining David Cone (1995), Pedro Martinez (1998) and Roger Clemens (1999).
Dickey expressed his frustration with the pace of negotiations while appearing earlier this week at a holiday party at Citi Field for schoolchildren affected by Hurricane Sandy.
"In the context of the market, you want what you think is fair," Dickey said. "I feel like we're asking for less than what's fair because that's how it's been for me. There is a surprise sometimes when things don't get done quickly and you already think you're extending the olive branch. At the same time, they have a budget they have to adhere to. I don't know those numbers. And I try not to take it personally."
Information from ESPNDallas.com's Richard Durrett was used in this report.