Mets GM Sandy Alderson gave an end-of-the-year review today at Citi Field and, unsurprisingly, most of the talk was about Jose Reyes' future. Andy McCullough of the Star-Ledger has the full transcript of Alderson's remarks, but here are some of the highlights...
- Alderson expects to be in contact with Reyes' representation within the next couple of days, though he is very doubtful that they could agree to an extension during the Mets' exclusive negotiating window. "If history is any guide, most players who get to this point don’t see any reason to make a decision within the next 30 days, that close to free agency," Alderson said.
- If Reyes doesn't return, Alderson didn't rule out the possibility of going after another major free agent, noting that "it's a fluid market."
- Alderson has a "choking point" in mind as to how much the Mets are willing to spend to retain Reyes' services. The GM noted, however, that this figure could rise depending on how the rest of the market for Reyes plays out.
- The Mets' 2012 payroll will in the range of $100-110MM, though this could obviously be boosted should Reyes be re-signed.
- The Bernie Madoff scandal and its financial fallout "has a lingering effect" on the Wilpons, Alderson believes. The Wilpons received a favorable court ruling yesterday, which Alderson said provides a better outlook for both ownership and the club itself.
- The Mets' defense "needs to be improved dramatically." Alderson also wants to improve the bullpen and figures he'll probably spend more on relievers than he did last winter.
- In response to a question about who New York's center fielder will be next year, Alderson spoke of the need for improved outfield defense and didn't mention Angel Pagan. McCullough figures this is a sign that Pagan will be non-tendered, as "the new front office has not been impressed with his play."