Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lucas Duda will have to play a big part of Mets Success in 2012


LUCAS DUDA'S STATS

GPABRH2B3BHRRBIBBSOSBCSAVGOBPSLGOPS
2011 Regular Season10030138882131050335710.292.370.482.852
Career129385491052731463397910.273.347.468.815


Lucas Duda spent last season in an increasingly more important role. The outfielder was promoted from the minors and flourished, moving into the cleanup spot in the batting order as his new Mets teammates went down with injuries and struggled.

But like just about everyone else on the Mets, Duda was struck down by injury, too. He suffered a concussion when he ran into the wall in St. Louis on Sept. 21, sitting out the final week of the season.

Duda was at Citi Field for a Mets press conference, joining David Wright and Ike Davis as the models for the team's 2012 uniforms. And if he was the face of the franchise that day, he might be on the field, too.

Next Mets Closer Frank Francisco?


Sandy Alderson's top priority this off season (Besides Reyes Contract) is to build a reliable bullpen. That starts with the closer.

With a payroll that will be shaved thirty percent from 2011, Alderson has the unenviable task of finding someone who can close games at a reasonable price. The average salary for a closer is in the neighborhood of five million dollars, the elite guys make significantly more than the average.

Alderson has acknowledged the psychological importance of a dependable closer, so it is unlikely that he will look for reclamation projects (hence the disinterest in Broxton). The bad news is Broxton received a one year deal for four million dollars.

If a damaged guy like Broxton is receiving money that is close to the average for a closer, it will be very difficult for Alderson to secure someone on the cheap who can be counted on to get the job done night after night. So what are the options?

Recently, there have been rumblings about the Mets having interest in Octavio Dotel. While I would like Dotel in the bullpen, but I still see him as a setup guy.

Mets likely to keep Angel Pagan and his salary........


The Mets signaled for the first part of the offseason that Angel Pagan likely was out, and that the organization was looking to go in a different direction in center field.

More recently, they have signaled that Pagan will not be non-tendered at the Dec. 12 deadline, meaning he would remain and get a raise from the $3.5 million he made in 2011.

One logical reason for the turnaround was evident Wednesday. David DeJesus, a credible alternative, signed a deal with the Cubs that guaranteed him $10 million over two years. That makes Pagan far more credible for an organization watching its bottom line.

The Hall of Fame released ballot for 2012, Mike Piazza on List


According to Adam Rubin of ESPN NY, The Hall of Fame released its ballot for next summer's induction eligibility, and Bernie Williams probably is the player with the best credentials on the underwhelming list, which also includes ex-Met Jeromy Burnitz.

Things get far more interesting a year from now, when players who last appeared in the majors in 2007 are eligible.

That group includes Mike Piazza, Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa, Curt Schilling and Craig Biggio.

Wall Construction Update in Left Field (Photo)


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Bobby Valentine will be named the 45th Manager in Red Sox History Wednesday


The Process for finding a manager did not happen as smooth as the Red Sox would have liked it..

First, the Red Sox were going to hire someone from their first wave of interviews. Then the Cubs hired Dale Sveum and all of a sudden the Red Sox went back and started over, expanding their search. Then we heard reports that a manager would be named Tuesday, only to find out that would be delayed until later in the week. Tuesday, the saga took another turn.

Karl Ravech of ESPN -- the studio host of Baseball Tonight, not a reporter, mind you -- tweeted that Gene Lamont has been eliminated from contention for the manager job. That would leave only Bobby Valentine as a candidate, meaning he would be hired. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe has now reported that Valentine is the choice over Lamont "but that could change."

On the other hand ....

Sandy Alderson's agenda includes Reyes, Bullpen, Rotation


According to MLB.com's Anthony DiComo, The Mets are ready to lay the groundwork for the 2012 Campaign at the GM Winter Meetings Dec. 5-8 at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas.

Mets GM Sandy Alderson first means of business will be the contract of Jose Reyes.. For their part, the Mets will enter these Meetings believing they at least have the right of last refusal on Reyes, should the Marlins or some other team blow him away with a nine-figure offer. So Alderson will continue to sit back and wait on Reyes, using the Winter Meetings as a springboard for other activities instead.

If Reyes does not sign with the Mets,  the Mets have been rumored to have interest in SS Jack Wilson ... 

The Next part of Alderson's agenda will be concentrated on the bullpen. The Mets hope to land one or two late-inning relievers to improve the bullpen. Though several former closers have already hooked on with new teams,

Nick Evans Signs with Pirates


Nick Evans, who had been with the Mets since the team made him him a fifth-round draft selection in 2004, has signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates, his agent Marc Agar told the Daily News. Evans agreed to a minor league deal, with an invite to spring training.

In 2735 at-bats across eight minor league seasons, Evans posted an .822 OPS, and hit 107 home runs. In parts of four major league seasons, he had a .712 OPS. Frequently shuffling between the major and minors, Evans --who always impressed the organization and much of the fan base with his character and work ethic -- did not see many sustained opportunities with the Mets.

The Mets had been willing to re-sign Evans, despite removing him from the 40-man roster this month. Agar said that there was "extraordinary interest" in his client, and leaving the Mets was a difficult decision for Evans.

Rumor Mill: Mets making strong push for Octavio Dotel?


According to Bill Price of the NY Daily News,  the Mets have heavy interest in RHP Octavio Dotel. He was in the Mets Reliever in 1999, who was traded in the Mike Hampton deal..

UPDATE: CBS Sports reports Dotel is drawing interest from a handful of teams..

MLB.com says the Mets and Cardinals are in the running while FoxSports.com names the Cardinals, Reds and Tigers. Dotel is 38, but posted a high strikeout rate for the Cardinals (11.7 K/9, his best since '08) and threw well in the postseason.

Bill Price of the Daily News says the Mets are trying to plug holes until someone from the farm system steps up.


Here is Octavio Dotel's Stats:
GPGSCGSHOIPHRERHRBBSOWLSVHLDBLSVWHIPERA
2011 Regular Season6500054.036232161762543900.983.50
2011 Postseason1200010.15431214210300.682.61
Career6953400888.170540136911439610775447108----1.243.74

Royals sign Jonathan Broxton, Mets had interest - total ten teams


According to MLBTR.com, the Royals announced that they have agreed to sign Jonathan Broxton to a one-year deal, pending a physical. The deal is worth $4MM and includes $1MM in incentives based on games pitched for the 27-year-old right-hander, who will be Kansas City's setup man in 2012.
“We are delighted to add someone as talented as Jonathan to our bullpen,” Royals GM Dayton Moore said. “He will be used in a setup role to closer Joakim Soria and will help solidify what we feel is a young and talented bullpen.”
Broxton’s 2011 season ended in May after just 12 2/3 innings with a 5.68 ERA and nearly as many walks (9) as strikeouts (10). He had arthroscopic elbow surgery in September and was expected to begin an offseason throwing program this month. A dominant reliever for the Dodgers from 2006 to the early part of 2010, Broxton will look to rebuild value on a one-year contract in Kansas City.
 

Monday, November 28, 2011

Broxton not signing with Mets, Matt Capps Agent has not heard from Mets in awhile


Possible Target Matt Capps
The New York Mets are still hoping to sign a closer this off-season. And the search continues....

Mets Fans have been talking about Jonathan Broxton pitching for the Mets, but it doesn't look like that is going to happen. The New York Post heard from Broxton's agent, BB Abbot, "I don't think it will be New York for him."

However, some team will be making a happy announcement of a Broxton signing in the near future, the paper notes, since Abbot told the paper that his situation will be "resolved shortly."

The 6-3, 295-pound Broxton, a 27-year-old two-time All-Star, has spent his first seven seasons in the majors with the Los Angeles Dodgers, amassing a 25-20 record with 84 saves, 503 strikeouts, and a 3.19 ERA.

Mets unhappy with Catcher Ronny Paulino, look to fill his shoes


The Mets are not happy with backup catcher Ronny Paulino as Andy Martino of the NY Daily News indicated there was a riff between Paulino and Terry Collins at times. There was also a lack of work ethic as team officials put it.

According to Martino, team insiders say Josh Thole would catch about 60% of games, and a veteran acquisition would handle the remaining 40%.

With last year’s so-so rotation set to return largely intact, and with young arms like Bobby Parnell, Jon Niese and Dillon Gee still learning the league, a veteran catcher might be the best way to improve the pitching.

“He was supposed to hit for power, and all he did was hit singles,” said one Mets official of Paulino, who hit two home runs in 2011, and slugged just .351. “(Mike) Nickeas could do that, and he would be much better defensively."

Nickeas, 28, is universally regarded as a superb defender, and as recently as September the team was comfortable with the notion of replacing Paulino with him in 2012. But Nickeas’ .189 average in 53 at-bats in 2011 reminded the Mets of their concerns about his hitting, and prompted some club officials to push for an outside solution.

With the beautiful weather, Mets continue wall construction at Citi-Field (Photo)


Phillies wanted Billy Wagner to come out of retirement to close for them


According to the NY Post, The Phillies were interested in having Billy Wagner come out of retirement next season, but the star closer passed on both returning to baseball and rejoining the Mets’ arch rivals.

Wagner, who retired after a sparkling 2010 with the Braves, told The Post yesterday the Phillies called him directly after the 2011 season ended.

“It was after the regular season ... just to see if I was even contemplating coming back or had an itch or anything,” Wagner said. “I just told them, ‘No, I do not have an itch.’”

The Phillies’ interest came prior to their signing of new closer Jonathan Papelbon for four years and $50 million. Wagner, now 40, would have cost far less money. He pitched for the Phillies in 2004-05 before signing with the Mets in 2006.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Rumor Mill: No Official Signings until December?


Unlike other MLB teams that are scrambling to make most of the time off before the 2012 season kicks off in April, the New York Mets are taking it easy and have announced not to do anything officially until December.

They also announced arbitration to free-agent shortstop, Jose Reyes, on Wednesday, November 23, 2011, but in accordance with prior announcements, will not do any official signings at the moment.

According to a high ranking source in the MLB franchise, the New York Mets are keeping their option open and will secure only the best ones in the interest of their team and will not have any issue in disposing of those which hold no benefit for them.

Future Stars: CF Kirk Nieuwenhuis and 2B Reese Havens, Are they ready for prime time??


(CF) Kirk Nieuwenhuis is a Mets Future Star and one of the Mets Top Ten Prospects coming into the 2012 season (ranked 7th according to Baseball America). He had undergone surgery on July 2011 to repair a torn labrum in his left, non-throwing shoulder. This was not only a season-ending injury for Kirk, but a potentially career damaging one.

Although it was not to his throwing shoulder, an injury of this sort completely stops their ability to play baseball until it is fully healed. He cannot swing, and for a player who needs more at-bats in AAA to continue his development, this injury will halt his potential MLB debut by at least a year. That means he probably won't touch a baseball field until Late July 2012, just for rehab.

Nieuwenhuis, 24, hit .298 (56-188) with six home runs and 14 RBI in 53 games for Buffalo (AAA) of the International League last season. The 6-3, 215-pound outfielder participated in his first major league Spring Training in 2011.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Arbitration Decisions from Teams Around the League


There are many teams that decided to offer arbitration to many superstar players who have a Type A Free Agent rating, but there is also many Type B Free Agent players that did not get offers.. Here are the Arbitration Decisions From Teams Around the League - Source: MLBTR:
  • The Giants won't offer arbitration to Pat Burrell (B) or Cody Ross (B) according to John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle . Carlos Beltran (A) contractually cannot be offered arbitration.
  • The Dodgers declined to offer Hiroki Kuroda (B) arbitration, according to Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times . Rod Barajas (B) already signed with the Pirates.
  • The Pirates offered arbitration to Derrek Lee (B) while declining to offer Ryan Ludwick (B) and Chris Snyder (B) arbitration. Ryan Doumit (B) already signed with the Twins.
  • The Phillies did not offer Roy Oswalt (A) or Brad Lidge (B) arbitration, according to the AP (via ESPN). The team announced that it offered arbitration to Raul Ibanez (B), Ryan Madson (A, will not cost signing team a draft pick), and Jimmy Rollins (A), according to Todd Zolecki of MLB.com .
  • The Cubs offered arbitration to Carlos Pena (B) and Aramis Ramirez (B) but not to Kerry Wood (B), according to Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune .

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving From Mets Chronicle


Enjoy this Adam Sandler Classic



Happy Thanksgiving and don't eat too much turkey!

NY Times: Mets Owners could face jury if Madoff case goes to trial



According to the NY Times, The owners of the Mets will face a jury should there be a trial in the case filed against them by the trustee for the victims of Bernard L. Madoff’s fraud, a federal district judge ruled Wednesday. The Mets’ owners had opposed a jury trial.

The case could be settled before the trial is scheduled to begin on March 19. Both sides are in mediation with Mario M. Cuomo, the former New York governor.

The Mets will officially receive draft compensation for Jose Reyes if he leaves, Offer him Salary Arbitration


According to Ken Davidoff of the NY Newsday, The Mets offered salary arbitration to their free-agent shortstop, Jose Reyes, thereby retaining draft-compensation rights to him.

Reyes, 28, must inform the Mets of his decision to accept or reject arbitration by midnight Nov. 30. He is expected to reject arbitration, because he is in line to get a multiyear contract for considerable dollars. The Marlins already have made him a six-year offer for what is believed to be between $80 and $90 million, and Milwaukee could make a run at him, as well.

The Mets have taken a noticeably passive role regarding the ultra-popular player, staying in touch with Reyes' representatives and hoping to stay in the loop but, realistically, not expecting to keep him.

Grady Sizemore officially signs with Indians


The Cleveland Indians make it official and have agreed to terms with the former all-star outfielder on a one-year, incentive-based contract.

It's a deal that could work for both sides if he can stay healthy and on the field.

The Indians declined a $9 million option for 2012 last month on Sizemore, who has undergone five surgeries the past two years and has only played in 210 games the last three seasons because of injuries. Sizemore reportedly drew interest as a free agent from several other teams, but decided to come back to Cleveland.

Sizemore's base salary in 2012 will be $5-million and he can make another $4-million based on plate appearances. The deal also includes an awards package that includes $500,000 if Sizemore is selected comeback player of the year.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Bobby Valentine looks like the Frontrunner for Boston Red Sox Manager Job


Bobby Valentine in one of his finest moments as Mets manager
Bobby Valentine spent most of yesterday at Fenway Park, but according to Dan Martin of the NY Post that doesn’t mean he’s the Red Sox manager yet.

The former Mets skipper met with Boston hierarchy as new general manager Ben Cherington continues the process of looking for a replacement for Terry Francona, who left after the epic Red Sox collapse at the end of last season along with GM Theo Epstein.

Valentine, 61, has not managed in the majors since leaving the Mets in 2002, and Cherington told reporters yesterday he still has more work to do before settling on a manager.

“This has always been a choice that I’m going to make with ownership,” Cherington said.

Valentine reportedly is the favorite among ownership, which values previous big league managerial experience. That could be why the Red Sox didn’t rush to hire Dale Sveum, who was interviewed but landed with Epstein and the Cubs last week.

The Tear Down of the Great Wall of Flushing - Left Field Wall Construction continues at Citi-Field (Photo)


Mets sign OF Adam Loewen to a minor league deal


The Mets have signed Adam Loewen to a minor league deal, Baseball America reports.


A former pitcher, the 27-year-old Loewen hit .306 with 17 homers and 85 RBIs in 520 at-bats at Triple-A Las Vegas while primarily manning right field last season. He also appeared in 14 games for the Toronto Blue Jays, hitting .188 with one homer.

He last appeared in the majors as a pitcher in 2008 with the Baltimore Orioles, when the southpaw went 0-2 with an 8.02 ERA in 21 1/3 innings.

Actual MLB Labor Agreement Outlined


The actual release from MLB:

SUMMARY OF MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PLAYERS ASSOCIATION-MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL LABOR AGREEMENT

I.. TERM
a. Five-year contract
b. December 1, 2016 termination date

II.. SCHEDULING, REALIGNMENT, AND POSTSEASON PLAY
  • a. Beginning no later than the 2013 Postseason, Postseason play will be expanded for the first time since 1995. A second Wild Card will be awarded to the Club in each league with the second-best overall record among Clubs that do not win a division. The two Wild Card Clubs will play a single Postseason game, the winner of which will advance to the Division Series. A decision on adding two Wild Cards for 2012 will be made no later than March 1, 2012.
  • b. The Houston Astros will move to the American League West starting in 2013, creating two leagues of 15 Clubs each.
  • c. Starting in 2013, Interleague games will be played throughout the entire schedule, rather than exclusively in specific inter-league segments.
  • d. Active Roster limits will be expanded to 26 for certain regular or split doubleheaders.

Mets and five other teams interested in trading for Huston Street


The Marlins, Red Sox, Reds and Mets are also interested in Street, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (on Twitter).


The Orioles and Blue Jays are among the teams to have expressed trade interest in Rockies reliever Huston Street, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

Jim Johnson replaced Kevin Gregg as the Orioles' closer late last season, but Rosenthal says the O's prefer Johnson in next year's rotation. There's no harm in inquiring on Street, but in my opinion an $8MM closer is a luxury the Orioles don't need. We'll see whether the Rockies are willing to cover a decent chunk of his contract. Rosenthal suggests Orioles starter Jeremy Guthrie as a possible fit for Colorado, though I think Baltimore could trade Guthrie for better long-term assets than Street.

With Rafael Betancourt penciled in to close for the Rockies next year, Street seems widely available. Rosenthal and colleague Jon Paul Morosi first made the Blue Jays connection last week.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Is Jose Reyes worth 6 years, $120 Million?


Doubt it
As the consensus piles up on how much Jose Reyes will cash in this off-season,  Jon Heyman of SI.com gave his take on how much he thinks Jose Reyes will eventually ransom. Heyman said he will get 6 Years, $120 Million.

The question remains, is Jose Reyes worth all this cash? 

Did Jose Reyes drive in over 100 RBI's last year that I was not aware of? 

Is he a $20 Million a year player?  Plus can any team take a risk on him for all those years with his history of leg problems.

Take a look at his numbers and you decide..

Jose Reyes Career Numbers:


In 9 years that Jose Reyes has played for the Mets, he has only played 150 games or more 4 seasons.. Now he averages about 130 Games... Reyes between 2005-2008 averaged 65 stolen bases.. Now he only averages 35..

Basically everyone who is vying for his services are paying for his four glorious seasons in the past, plus the fact that he won the National League Batting Title last season in only 126 games.

To me it does not add up to $20 Million a year, but that's just me..

Sandy take the draft picks and call it a day!

Mets have expressed Interest in SS Jack Wilson


According to Adam Rubin of ESPN NY, The Mets, along with the Braves and Dodgers, are among six teams to show interest in infielder Jack Wilson.

Assuming Jose Reyes departs, the Mets will need to have a player on the bench capable of spelling Ruben Tejada at shortstop, and no one currently on the roster fits that profile.

The righty-hitting Wilson also played 45 games at second base last season with Seattle, perhaps allowing him to be a complement/defensive replacement for lefty-hitting Daniel Murphy.

JACK WILSON'S  STATS


GPABRH2B3BHRRBIBBSOSBCSAVGOBPSLGOPS
2011 Regular Season79214255290011103952.243.274.285.559
Career13304819561128224233614222686074332.266.307.368.675

Closer Joe Nathan signs with Texas Rangers


The Texas Rangers have signed Closer/RHP Joe Nathan. This move seems to indicate that RHP Neftali Feliz will be moving into the starting rotataion.

The Mets were looking at the NY Native to fill their void at closer...

Nathan has been with Minnesota Twins for the past 7 seasons. He was limited by injuries last season to pitching 44 innings with a 4.84 ERA. However, in the previous 6 seasons he never had less than 35 saves, and saved a career high 47 games in 2009. His career stats with both San Francisco and Minnesota: appeared in 581 games, 792 2/3 IP, 534 Hits, 276 BB, 761 K – 2.87 ERA..

Maybe Matt Capps is the answer?

Mets busy at work on new wall construction at Citi-Field (Photos)


Left field
Right Field

Sunday, November 20, 2011

New Labor Agreement has minimum salaries at $480,000


As I mentioned yesterday, Baseball's new labor contract will include blood testing for human growth hormone..

Also there will be a rise in the minimum salary to $480,000 and luxury taxes on both amateur draft signings and international free agents coming to the major leagues.

Lawyers for players and owners are working to complete a memorandum of understanding on changes to sport's collective bargaining agreement and hope to sign the deal by Tuesday.

A person familiar with the negotiations disclosed some of the agreed-upon provisions to The Associated Press on Saturday, speaking on condition of anonymity because the deal had not yet been announced.

The blood testing provision was first reported by The New York Times.

Blood testing for human growth hormone will start when players report to spring training in February, putting MLB ahead of the NFL. The NFL wanted to start HGH testing this season, following that sport's new labor contract, but the NFL Players Association has not agreed, causing some congressmen to pressure the union.

There also will be a slight increase in the total of players eligible for salary arbitration after the 2012 season, when there also will be a new method to determine compensation for clubs losing top major league free agents. There also will be modifications to the luxury tax on high-payroll teams, but the threshold will remain at $178 million next year.

The changes are the most numerous since the 1997 agreement that came nearly two years after a 7½-month strike that wiped out the 1994 World Series. The five-year deal, replacing one set to expire Dec. 11, ensures 21 consecutive years of labor peace for MLB at a time when the NBA season is being threatened by a lockout that already has wiped out a quarter of the regular season.

As part of the deal, baseball's minimum salary will go from $414,000 this year to $480,000 in 2012 and $500,000 later in the deal -- matching what the average salary was in 1989.

Future Star: Jordany Valdespin could possibly win the 2B job this spring


Remember the name Jordany Valdespin, He was on the Mets 40 man roster in 2011 and invited to shared some time with the team last spring. He started his season in Binghamton with Wally Backman and moved his way to the Triple-A level with Tim Teufel , who now is the Mets 3rd base coach..

Valdespin could be the answer the Mets are looking for at second base. The Mets also have Justin Turner and Daniel Murphy, who could get a shot playing there everyday or might get the 3rd baseman job by default, if David Wright is traded this off-season.

There a couple of reasons to like Valdespin.. For One, The kid hits and hits for power.  Valdespin big lefty swing had 17 HRs with 32 doubles and 3 triples last year combined between Binghamton and Buffalo... He also hit .294. combined with a .333 OBP. (which should improve over time). Valdespin also has some speed, as he swiped 37 bases (Combined).. His speed can compensate the loss of Jose Reyes, which so far looks like a reality coming to the Mets..

Jordany Valdespin right now is playing for the Tigres del Licey in the Dominican Winter League where he only batting .220 in 59 AB's, but has time to improve that since the league ends 12/21/11...


2011 Season
TeamLeagueAVGGABRH2B3BHRRBITBBBSOSBCSOBPSLGOPS
BINEAS.29710740462120243155119521683314.341.483.824
BUFINT.2802710773080294442544.304.411.715
Minors.29413451169150323176023925933718.333.468.801
2011 Offseason Leagues
TeamLeagueAVGGABRH2B3BHRRBITBBBSOSBCSOBPSLGOPS
LICDWL.22019597131309205571.281.339.620

Saturday, November 19, 2011

MLB to begin blood testing for HGH (Steroids)


Major League Baseball’s owners and players are close to completing a new collective bargaining agreement that for the first time will include blood testing for human growth hormone, according to the NY Times. The testing will be a significant step for baseball, allowing it to move ahead of other professional sports leagues, including the N.F.L., in confronting the troublesome issue of a drug that has long evaded detection.

The bargaining agreement, which could be announced early next week, calls for blood testing to begin in February, when players report to spring training. Players who test positive will face a 50-game suspension, which will be the same as the first-time penalty for a positive steroid test.

Baseball will be the first of the major North American professional sports to do any type of blood testing for drugs among their unionized players. In 2010, baseball introduced blood testing for H.G.H. on minor league players because the step could be taken without the consent of the union.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Grady Sizemore appears to be headed back to Indians


Sizemore
Grady Sizemore appears to be headed back to the Indians and will keep his current address.

The free-agent outfielder is in serious discussions with his previous team, according to his agent, Joe Urbon.

“Grady has maintained that he would welcome a return to the Indians,” Urbon said. “Our efforts right now are to see if we can make that happen.”

The talks accelerated Friday, with the two sides exchanging proposals. Sizemore pulled back from his discussions with other clubs to try to get a deal with the Indians, multiple sources said, and could make a decision this weekend.

By staying with the Indians, Sizemore would remain with the doctors and trainers who know him best. He would sign a one-year contract, attempt to keep his knees healthy and try to better position himself for another crack at free agency next offseason.

Other than the Indians, the Phillies, Cubs and Rockies have been the most aggressive teams on Sizemore, sources said. The Indians had been pressing him for an answer, knowing they might need to move on to other pursuits.

Sizemore became a free agent after the Indians declined his $9 million club option. He is expected to receive a much lower guarantee in this contract, but with incentives that could push its total to approximately the same value as the option or beyond.

The Mets protect seven of their top prospects, put them on the 40 man roster


Kirk Nieuwenhuis
With an abnormally large number of their top prospects vulnerable in next month's Rule 5 Draft, the Mets on Friday performed some extensive roster shuffling to keep their farm system intact.

The Mets added pitchers Robert Carson and Jeurys Familia, outfielders Juan Lagares, Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Cesar Puello, and infielders Wilmer Flores and Reese Havens to their 40-man roster, ensuring that no team can select those players in the Rule 5 Draft proceedings at the Winter Meetings in Dallas.

They opted not to protect pitcher Brad Holt and infielder Jefry Marte, among others, leaving those players exposed to other teams.

Endy Chavez II : The Return?


The Catch
Andy Martino of the NY Daily News reports that one high-ranking team insider says the Mets are open to a second stint in Flushing for the free agent outfielder, and have discussed Chavez — albeit in a very informal and preliminary way — with agent Peter Greenberg.

Although there have not yet been any serious talks or negotiations, Mets brass considers Chavez a fit for the 2012 roster. It remains to be seen whether the sides will agree on Chavez’s value.

The pursuit of a fourth outfielder would not normally be headline-worthy, but Chavez owns a special place in franchise lore: His leaping, snow-cone catch of what seemed a certain Scott Rolen home run in Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS kept a classic contest close. Although the Mets lost that series on a Yadier Molina home run and a Carlos Beltran strikeout, Chavez's catch remained one of the most iconic plays in postseason history.

I hope Endy will return to the Ny Mets, he was always a favorite of mine.. - DD

Endy Chavez's Stats

GPABRH2B3BHRRBIBBSOSBCSAVGOBPSLGOPS
2011 Regular Season8325637771135271030105.301.323.426.749
2011 Postseason550000000000.000.000.000.000
Career910249332668211232242171502719735.274.313.373.686

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Minor Moves: Mets sign (1B) Val Pascucci & (C /OF) Vinny Rottino to Minor League Contracts, Nick Evans declares Free Agency


Rottino
Mets Announce to minor league signings

The New York Mets today announced they have signed first baseman Val Pascucci and catcher/outfielder Vinny Rottino to minor league contracts and invited both to major league Spring Training.

Pascucci, who turns 33 today, split last season between Buffalo (AAA) of the International League and the Mets. He hit the first pinch-hit home run of his career on September 24 off Philadelphia’s Cole Hamels. The 6-6, 270-pounder appeared in 130 games for Buffalo (AAA) of the International League last season, hitting .264 (117-443) with a team-leading 91 RBI and was presented the Stan Barron MVP award.

A former 15th round pick by the Montreal Expos in the 1999 June Free-Agent Draft, Pascucci made his major league debut in 2004. He appeared in 42 games over parts of two major league seasons for the Expos and Mets, hitting .192 (14-73) with three home runs and eight RBI.

Rottino, 31, spent last season with the Florida Marlins’ organization, playing in 119 games for New Orleans (AAA) of the Pacific Coast League and eight games with the Marlins. The 6-0, 215-pounder hit .304 (142-467) with 10 home runs and 59 RBI for the Zephyrs, earning a nod to the Pacific Coast League All-Star Game. Rottino was promoted to the Marlins on September 6 and hit .167 (2-12). Rottino also appeared in 18 major league games over parts of three seasons for Milwaukee (2006-08), and is a .194 (7-36) career hitter with four RBI.

Mets owners making progress selling minority shares


The New York Mets are making progress in their bid to raise roughly $200 million through selling minority ownership shares in the franchise, sources familiar with the sale told ESPNNewYork.com.

The infusion would help principal owner Fred Wilpon and family offset operating losses and loan obligations.

A source confirmed the Mets have commitments from investors to purchase approximately seven minority ownership shares at $20 million apiece.

The Wilpons may sell additional investment blocks if demand exists, but would be content with the current $140 million pledged if no more commitments materialize, sources said.

Sources said the Wilpons are offering prospective buyers the ability to cash out in six years and receive interest on their investment, listed in multiple reports as 3 percent annually. That, in essence, means the investment could be viewed as a sort of bank certificate of deposit.

Mets make it official, Backman managing Triple A - Buffalo Bisons


It Official, Wally Backman is moving his way up the New York Mets' farm system after being named manager of the team's Triple-A affiliate in Buffalo.

At 52, the former major league infielder takes over the Buffalo Bisons. He replaces Tim Teufel, who was promoted to become the Mets' third-base coach this offseason.

Backman has nine seasons of managerial experience and two with the Mets organization. He broke in as a manager in 2001 with the Chicago White Sox Class A affiliate Winston-Salem. Backman has a 534-488 career record and has won two league titles as a manager.

Backman spent 14 seasons in the majors, including his first nine with the Mets from 1980-88, and was a member of New York's 1986 World Series championship team.
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