The Colorado Rockies extended a qualifying offer to outfielder Michael Cuddyer this week, likely removing him from the off-season plans of the New York Mets and every other potential suitor. If Cuddyer accepts, he’ll earn $15.3 million to play for the Rockies again in 2015. If he declines, the team who signs him will forfeit a draft pick.
Cuddyer was expected to get a two-year deal in the $20 million range, so it’s probably in his best interest to accept the qualifying offer. I thought he could be a decent fit for a Mets team that badly needs more offense from the left field position, but signing a player who will be 36 on Opening Day was already an expensive gamble – particularly considering he played in just 49 games this year. Add in the loss of the Mets’ first round draft pick, and Cuddyer just doesn’t make sense any more. I’m sure most other potential suitors will make a similar evaluation.
I’ve heard talk about the Mets trading for Red Sox outfielder Yoenis Cespedes or signing free agent Michael Morse as an alternative, but I just don’t see it. The Mets and Red Sox are not a very good fit as trading partners, and Cespedes is not the type of player Sandy Alderson covets. Morse is simply not an outfielder at this stage of his career – he can handle first base if you don’t have high expectations for his defense, but he’s best suited to DH.
MetsToday.com writer Dan Capwell shared what he thought the Mets would do this off-season, which basically amounts to maintaining the status quo. That sounds about right… I can see Bartolo Colon getting traded near the deadline next year if the Mets need to open a spot for Noah Syndergaard once the Super Two deadline has passed, and maybe Daniel Murphy will get shopped then if the Mets are nowhere near the wild card race. This winter, I expect stories designed to boost traffic for the media outlets that publish them and little action from the Mets.
In happier Mets news, congratulations to outfielder Juan Lagares who won his first Gold Glove Award last night, and Jacob deGrom, who was honored with the Player’s Union National League Outstanding Rookie Award and named as a finalist for the “real” National League Rookie of the Year Award.