YES. KEEPING HIM WOULD'VE BEEN A MISTAKEBy Andrew Marchand
I can't stand the disingenuousness of the Mets. I do not like how they try to fool their fans. I've seen this Wilpon act before. It is extremely distasteful.
However, I don't think the Mets should have signed Jose Reyes for six years at $106 million.
The Mets are probably destined to finish last with or without Reyes. The Phillies are the Phillies. The Braves just missed the playoffs. The Marlins are now spending some money. And the Nationals are up-and-coming.
With Reyes, the Mets probably are still not as good as any of those teams. Now, reinvesting the money they would have spent in other areas makes the most sense. My fear for Mets fans is that the Wilpons will not do that.
But that is not what we are arguing here.
Reyes is just 28 years, but he relies on his often injured legs. Who doesn't think he is going to spend a good amount of his time in South Beach on the sidelines?
Reyes gets hurt a lot. To pay that type of dough for a guy who could be constantly injured is too much.
Over his past six seasons, Reyes was a .297 hitter who averaged 13 homers and 53 RBIs. His OPS was .812. He stole 46 bags a year ago and scored an average of 93 runs. Is that worth nearly $20 million per season? Probably not, but maybe.
In the next six years, will Reyes' numbers be even that good? The emotion of the moment may give Rubin this Hot Button victory, but check back in 2017.
LET REYES GO? NO WAY, JOSEBy Adam Rubin
Should GM Sandy Alderson really have allowed Jose Reyes to defect to another team in the NL East when six years, $106 million was the high bid?
Yes, committing to Reyes does carry some risk of injury. But the fact of the matter is the Mets never really made a pure baseball decision. Their refusal to commit to more than five years at considerably less money primarily was fueled by ownership-imposed payroll constraints. Alderson essentially admitted as much Sunday night, saying, "When a team loses $70 million irrespective of Bernie Madoff or anyone else, that's probably a bigger factor in our approach to this season and the next couple than anything else."
I've long railed against the Mets handing out long-term contracts to free agents already on the backside of their careers. But Reyes is a homegrown talent who is only 28 next Opening Day. And if you're going to err, err on the player your fans already adore.
Bottom line: Assuming Johan Santana and Jason Bay's contracts expire after 2013 as the organization hopes, the Mets do not have any payroll committed for 2014 right now. So what was the harm in accepting some risk on Reyes' contract at the back end?
Yes, the Mets may be a last-place team either way next season. But the Mets may never have a shortstop as dynamic as Reyes ever again. And if the Mets are ready to compete again in 2014, they now will be opposing a 30-year-old Reyes instead of having him lead off for them.