Thursday, December 23, 2010
Ticking Clock Doesn't Appear to Phase Mets
by Jim Mancari
Surprisingly, several good starting pitchers are still available, yet teams appear reluctant to pull the trigger.
I figured that once Cliff Lee signed, the other starters would fall like dominoes since teams in need for starting pitchers would not want to be left in the dust.
Carl Pavano and his disgusting mustache won 17 games last year. You would think someone would want to lock him up. True, he has had an interesting last few seasons, but he proved last year that he can stay healthy for an entire season.
Now, I do not want Pavano anywhere near the Mets nor do I think they even have the money to spend on him. But as of now, he appears to be the best starting pitcher available. So similar to the situation with Lee, once Pavano is off the table, the other pitchers may go fast.
Among these are the two names we've heard linked to the Mets: Chris Young and Jeff Francis. Both are coming off injury years and seem to want guaranteed contracts in the $5 million range at this point. Is that too much to spend on a question mark? If the Mets weren't financially strapped and if Johan was healthy for the start of the season, I'd say roll the dice on one of them. But taking things into account, it might be best to see if the prices come down after the new year.
If there is a team out there willing to pay $5 million for either of these players, then go for it. But it seems like other teams are thinking along the same lines as the Mets.
I wish the Mets would make more of an aggressive play for Brandon Webb. Here's a guy who was dominant not too long ago but also had injury troubles. I wonder if he is asking for multiple years because of his impressive resume. That could be what is keeping the Mets out of the running.
If the Mets could be a sleeper for Webb, that would be great. I would rather have Webb than Young or Francis. But with the clock ticking, all three of these pitchers may call somewhere else other than Citi Field home in 2011.
Originally featured at Mets Merized Online.