METS NEED TO SHOW REYES THE MONEYBy Ian O'Connor
Archive As it turns out, the New York Mets put their money on the wrong guy five summers back. They gave Jose Reyes a relatively short and employer-friendly contract three days before turning over one of those face-of-the-franchise deals to David Wright. Reyes accepted four years and $23.35 million before Wright scored six years and $55 million. Right here, right now, life would be so much easier for the Mets if they could put one deal in place of the other as easily as their old sugar daddy, Bernie Madoff, moved some poor soul's life savings from this account to that one. In Reyes the Mets would have baseball's most dynamic player under their control for another two years, enough time, perhaps, for Irving Picard or David Einhorn to hit the eject button that sends Fred Wilpon flying out of Flushing for good. In Wright the Mets would have a pending free agent who might return to a counterfeit contender a key rebuilding piece before the July 31 trade deadline, assuming this really good kid and very good player -- but not a superstar, you know -- gets back on the field between now and then. Only that's fantasy baseball, just another game the Mets cannot win. Now they have to confront the grim reality of a Reyes departure and a fan base revolt that would leave Citi Field about as empty in August and September as Madison Square Garden is in May and June. So even as they prepare to slash tens of millions from their $140 million-and-change payroll, the Mets need to sign Reyes long term and help pay for his significant raise -- in the short term -- by thanking Wright for the memories and trading him to an owner ready to accept him as a Pippen, not a Jordan.
WRIGHT DESERVES BETTERBy Mike Mazzeo
ESPNNewYork.com Fred Wilpon is Wright about David. He isn't a superstar. And yet, David Wright continues to be the face of the Mets' franchise. Though currently on the disabled list with a stress fracture in his lower back, Wright has done everything the franchise has asked of him since he came through the organization: He's accessible to the media, involved in charity work and willing to make any and every appearance the Mets ask him to. At this juncture, all signs point to Wright being dealt with the emergence of Jose Reyes. Makes sense. Especially since Reyes is arguably the best player in baseball right now. Of course, if the Mets would just move the fences in at Citi Field, Wright could have just as much an impact as Reyes, if not more. Wright has actually been a decent hitter at the cavernous ballpark in Queens. In 168 games, he's batting .288. Problem is, in 598 at-bats, he's mashed just 21 homers. Not that Wright's swing doesn't need to be fixed. He has a beautiful stroke to right-center field. But he's hurt, and Reyes has better value on the trade market. The Mets would do well to move Reyes for prospects -- or let him walk and pick up a couple solid draft picks. Do they really want to sign Reyes for Carl Crawford-like money only to see him get hurt a couple years into a seven-year, $140 million contract? No. Allow that to be someone else's problem. Wright has done everything the Mets have asked of him. The least they can do is move the fences in and allow him to re-establishe himself as the face of the franchise -- on the field.