Ike Davis Rumors
Determined to become more of a power-oriented team, the Mets have decided against trading Ike Davis this winter, writes Joel Sherman of the New York Post. The Mets originally considered trading Davis and moving Lucas Duda to first base, but the club will now slot Duda in left field and keep Davis at first in an effort to boost their home run total.
General Manager Sandy Alderson is expected to do even more to add power to the Mets lineup. If the Mets wind up trading R.A. Dickey, they would push to get at least one young slugger in return, preferably an outfielder. Sherman also writes that the Mets can be expected to pursue low-cost veteran sluggers and may consider names such as Jonny Gomes and Raul Ibanez.
The latest on the Mets...
- Mike Puma of The New York Post reports that Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler are the team's only untouchables in trade talks. GM Sandy Alderson is expected to explore trades more than free agents this winter, and they have "some interest" in White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers.
- Lucas Duda had surgery yesterday after fracturing his wrist moving furniture, and Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com says that could take Ike Davis completely off the trade market. Duda was the club's backup plan at first base, though he is expected to be ready for Spring Training.
- David Lennon of Newsday says (on Twitter) that it would be very tough for the Mets to trade R.A. Dickey from a public relations perspective even if the two sides can't work out a long-term deal.
- John Harper of The New York Daily News writes that Alderson has plenty to prove following his first two years on the job. Outside of the Wheeler trade, Harper says his moves haven't worked out too well.
The Yankees are obviously frustrated with how their 2012 campaign turned out, but an American League General Manager told Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe that they won't have to blow things up the way that the Red Sox did in order to improve. “[I] don’t think they necessarily have to hit rock bottom like Boston to get better," said the GM. "We always said you can’t do that in Boston, but it happened. We always say that can’t happen with the Yankees, so I guess we’ll see. But I just see Brian Cashman trying to get this team younger while still competing. That’s what I think will happen.” Here's more from today's column..
- We've heard that the Mets will be open to trading Ike Davis, but special assistant J.P. Ricciardi would be shocked to see any movement on the first baseman. Davis has often been linked to the Red Sox and the Rays would also be a fit. Tampa Bay could certainly afford to part ways with a pitcher in order to improve their offense.
- Giants right-hander Tim Lincecum will be available in trade and it will be interesting to see what kind of market develops for him. The Giants say his problems were strictly mechanical, but other teams wonder why his fastball dipped from around 96 mph to 92 mph for most of the season. The 28-year-old is due $22MM in the final year of his deal.
- The White Sox will decline Jake Peavy's $22MM option for 2013 and one National League GM sees him fetching a three-year deal worth $36-40MM on the open market. Understandably, the GM cautioned that team doctors would have to do a thorough check on him despite the fact that he stayed healthy this past season.
- Ricciardi's deal with the Mets is up but he expects to return. So far, no one has inquired on him as a GM candidate or something close, though he says he would like to return to the front office.
The Mets will “turn over” the roster this coming offseason, team sources tell Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com. Here are the details, starting with the team’s franchise player...
- Team officials remain optimistic that they’ll be able to retain David Wright long-term, Rubin reports. Mets executives hope the third baseman will succeed Tom Seaver as the unofficial ambassador for the organization once he retires as a player, according to Rubin. Wright told Rubin over the weekend that he hopes his next contract will cover the remainder of his playing career.
- Relievers Jon Rauch and Ramon Ramirez are expected to leave as free agents after the season, Rubin reports.
- Rubin hears from Mets sources that Andres Torres and Mike Pelfrey will likely be non-tendered this winter.
- R.A. Dickey’s contract includes a club option for 2013 that will surely be exercised, but his long-term future with the organization is not entirely secure, according to Rubin. Mets executives seem wary of making a “sizable commitment” to the Cy Young candidate.
- One Mets person said the team would require “a boatload” to part with Ike Davis, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports. The Red Sox had two scouts in attendance at last night’s Mets-Marlins game and could have interest in trading for the first time arbitration eligible first baseman, Heyman reports.
The Mets aren't inclined to trade Lucas Duda, believing that his upside outweighs what they could net in a deal, according to Mike Puma of the New York Post. A report earlier this month indicated that the Mets would be open to the right deal for either Duda or Ike Davis to address other needs.
Dealing Davis would open up the first base position for Duda, making him a natural fit for the 2013 club. However, if the Mets do not find the right deal for Davis, the club seems willing to stick with Duda in the outfield and hope for the best.
Davis, 25, shouldn't be too hard to move as he has climbed back from a slow start to hit .224/.304/.454 with 31 homers in 566 plate appearances this season. The Red Sox, Indians, Rays, and Marlins are among the teams that could have interest in him this winter.
Mets general manager Sandy Alderson offered some insight into the team’s offseason plans in an interview with Gary Cohen and Ron Darling of SNY on last night’s Mets broadcast (transcript via Andrew Keh of the New York Times). Here are the details...
- Alderson suggested rival teams won't "put a lot of stock in" the report that the Mets are frustrated with Ike Davis’ attitude and lifestyle. The Mets dealt with the matter internally and are not looking to trade Davis, according to Alderson. “For us to trade a guy that’s hit 30 home runs, we better know where the next 30 are coming from,” he said.
- Alderson repeated that the Mets are interested in extending David Wright and R.A. Dickey this offseason. “Our intent is to work hard to try to keep them both,” he said. The Mets are expected to exercise 2013 options for both players then discuss long-term contracts.
- The Mets aren’t likely to spend big on outfielders this offseason, Andy Martino reported earlier today.
If you're among MLBTR's 202,000 Twitter followers then thanks for following. If you aren’t yet following, we’d recommend it. But you don't have to take our word for it. Sports Illustrated named @mlbtraderumors one of the 100 essential Twitter accounts for those seeking “news, information and entertainment from the sports world.” Here are today’s links...
- MLB is nearing agreements with FOX and Turner Sports on new eight-year broadcasting contracts according to the AP (via ESPN). Revenue from the two networks is likely to double to $800MM annually.
- Commissioner Bud Selig isn’t worried about the Mets, Newsday's Marc Carig reports (Twitterlinks). "I don't consider the Mets a problem in any way, shape or manner,” Selig said. “They're on the right track." Selig went on to express confidence in the Wilpon family and general manager Sandy Alderson.
- The Mets should be open to trading Ike Davis this winter, especially if they can fill multiple holes by sending the first baseman to another team, Ken Davidoff of the New York Post writes. The Mets have too many needs to rule out possible deals involving Davis.
- The first year of Jose Reyes’ deal with Miami would have to be called a success, Davidoff writes. The Marlins shortstop leads the team with 147 games played despite previous concerns about his durability.
- One well-connected person estimates the Cardinals are worth $1.5 billion, Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Dispatch reports (on Twitter). The Dodgers recently sold for a record $2 billion in a positive development for other MLB owners.
- Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos told Greg Brady and Jim Lang on Sportsnet 590 the FAN that Yunel Escobar’s decision to write a homophobic slur on his eye black was “stupid, selfish, shameful, insensitive.” Anthopoulos acknowledged that he thought about suspending Escobar for a year or releasing him (hat tip to John Lott of the National Post).
Mike Axisa contributed to this post.
A few links of note out of the NL East, where the first-place Nationals' hunt for a first playoff berth was placed on hold tonight due to a rain postponement.
- Mets manager Terry Collins said that the organization supports first baseman Ike Davis and that there are no questions about his work ethic or receptiveness to coaching, tweets Marc Carig of Newsday. Earlier today, we heard that the Mets will be open to trading Davis during the upcoming offseason, in part because they have concerns about his commitment. Davis quickly refuted that allegation.
- Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said he expects to return as Miami's manager next season, though he understands why some are speculating about his job security, according to the Associated Press (via ESPN.com). "At this moment everybody in the organization ought to be up in the air," Guilen said. "It's not up to me. If it's up to me, I'd love to be here." Guillen is under contract through 2015 after signing a four-year deal prior to this season.
- Phillies second baseman Chase Utley may start a few games at third base before the season is over, according to Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. Though the sample would likely be too small for GM Ruben Amaro to arrive at any definitive conclusions as to whether the switch could be made long-term, it may nonetheless factor into his offseason planning, as Amaro said the market for third basemen -- via trade or free agency -- is "not very good."
Andy Pettitte will return to the mound against the Blue Jays tonight -- assuming the Yankees aren't rained out in New York. Meanwhile, the Mets will start Matt Harvey against the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Here are today's New York Notes...
- Ike Davis was surprised and confused to hear that the Mets are concerned about his nightlife, Andy Martino of the New York Daily News reports. “I have never missed games or not been ready to work because of anything to do with staying up too late,” Davis told Martino. Adam Rubin reported today that the Mets will consider trade offers for Davis, in part because they have questions about his lifestyle.
- Andy McCullough of the Star-Ledger suggests the Mets will consider trading any player not named David Wright this winter (Twitter link). The Mets will reportedly consider trades for Davis and Lucas Duda this offseason.
- Joel Sherman of the New York Post explains how Derek Jeter’s durability impacts other players on the 2012 Yankees. Jeter's hitting .323/.366/.444 in a league-leading 665 plate appearances.
9:00am: The Mets won't shop either Davis or Duda aggressively, but they'll be open to the right deal for either player, Andy Martino of the New York Daily News reports (on Twitter).
8:26am: The Mets will consider trading Ike Davis as a way of addressing other needs this offseason, Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com reports. There’s no guarantee Davis will be moved, but it’s at least “a very plausible option,” Rubin writes.
The Mets are disappointed with Davis’ attitude toward coaching advice and they worry that he’s out too late after games, according to Rubin. Trading Davis would open up first base for Lucas Duda, who’s viewed as an inferior defender to Davis.
Davis, 25, has rebounded from a slow start to post a .223/.302/.444 batting line with 27 home runs in 529 plate appearances. The left-handed hitter will be first-time arbitration eligible as a super two player this coming offseason and he's under team control through 2016. The Indians, Rays, Red Sox and Marlins are among the teams that could be interested in first basemen this coming offseason.