The Mets are next in our 2013 Arbitration Eligibles series. Matt Swartz's salary projections are below.
- First time: Daniel Murphy ($3MM), Bobby Parnell ($1.5MM), Josh Thole ($1.2MM), Rob Johnson ($600K), Ike Davis ($2.8MM)
- Second time: Fred Lewis ($500K), Manny Acosta ($1.1MM)
- Third time: Andres Torres ($3.2MM), Mike Pelfrey ($5.7MM)
The Mets have nine arbitration eligible players, but more than half stand a good chance of being non-tendered. Pelfrey had Tommy John surgery in May, and even with his recovery going well there's no reason to pay him nearly $6MM again. Seeing as how the former first-rounder is a client of the Boras Corporation, he'll probably be reluctant to allow for a club option when he signs somewhere as a free agent.
The Giants have been thrilled with Angel Pagan, but a change of scenery didn't help Torres on the other end of that trade. Torres' ineffective season was marred by injuries, and he'll be cut loose. Acosta was removed from the Mets' 40-man roster in May and re-added later; he'll be off it again soon. Johnson struggled at both Triple-A and in the Majors, ending his season with a ligament tear in his thumb. Lewis spent little time with the Mets this year and is also likely to be removed from the 40-man.
Davis and Thole will be arbitration eligible as Super Two players. The Mets were rewarded for sticking with Davis, who was brutal for the season's first two months and then hit .253/.341/.536 with 27 home runs in 413 plate appearances the rest of the way. If the Mets feel good about Davis' future, perhaps they could look to extend him now with some variant of Billy Butler's four-year, $30MM contract. Thole had a rough year, but at a low projected salary he can be retained as a backup and personal catcher for R.A. Dickey.
Murphy is penciled in as the team's second baseman after a solid 2012 campaign. Parnell hasn't had much success closing out games in his career to date, but overall he had a strong year and will have a key role in next year's bullpen.
Assuming only Murphy, Parnell, Davis, and Thole are retained, we're projecting $8.5MM for four arbitration eligible players.
Matt Swartz's arbitration projections are available exclusively at MLB Trade Rumors. To read more about his projection model, check out this series of posts. For more on the Mets, check out Ben Nicholson-Smith's offseason outlook.