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All Purpose Are The Mets Buyers Or Sellers thread.

Jun 21 2005 09:51 AM

Well the drumbeat has started, articles declaring that the Mets should be sellers are here , this one courtesy of Newsday.

]Minaya should be a seller

Omar Minaya, man of action, needs to think big once again between now and July 31. Preferably closer to now.

It's time to sell.

It's time to realize that what the Mets have won't get it done. Not even with Pedro Martinez pitching every five days. Not even in the egalitarian National League East.

The Mets' general manager doesn't agree. While acknowledging yesterday that "all things are possible," he added, "I'd rather think of myself as a buyer right now. I want to try and stay in a buyer's mode for as long as I can."

Given that Minaya acquired Bartolo Colon and Cliff Floyd while running the "Hey, don't throw out that soda can! We can redeem that for a nickel!" Montreal Expos, his outlook doesn't surprise us. Hey, maybe he can find someone who can hit and someone else who can help out of the bullpen, and maybe the last-place Mets, 3-9 in the last two weeks, can climb back up the division.

But we don't think so, and Minaya himself sounds doubtful about importing helpful talent. "We really have a team that's somewhat set, because of some of the young guys," he said. "We're going to keep playing the young guys. The veteran guys need to produce."

Some just need to go. We don't recommend a fire sale. Floyd, for example, should stay. Although he could bring back a strong package, he's a good enough fit with the Mets, now and next year.

We're looking at a simple two-year plan: Take a step back. Get some young players in return, who can either help the big-league Mets or serve as future trading chips. Reload over the winter. Compete next year. When the great yet fragile Martinez is your ace, you don't want to take too long to put it together.

So here's our proposed shipping list:

1. Mike Piazza. Like Bernie Williams in the Bronx, Piazza has nothing about which to be ashamed. He earned his contract. He did great things here. But even Fran Healy, if he accidentally ingested a truth serum, would tell you that Piazza should be a designated hitter. If the Mets pay what's left of his $16-million salary, they should get a decent prospect in return. Or if they want to pay less, they might get financial relief from a club such as the Angels. Let Ramon Castro and Benito Santiago share the catching duties the rest of the way.

2. Tom Glavine. The Mets signed the well-meaning lefthander as an ace. Glavine could help a contender - such as his hometown Red Sox - as a back-of-the-rotation guy. Like Piazza, he has a no-trade clause, but the intelligent Glavine surely would be amenable to a change of scenery, as long as it was the right change. Because he's likely to vest his 2006 option, the Mets would have to throw in some financial assistance. And this would open a spot for Aaron Heilman in the rotation.

3. Mike Cameron. If his right quadriceps can recover in time, Cameron would greatly help the Yankees, Orioles or many other teams. Although the rightfielder has done well for the Mets when healthy, he's far more valuable to other clubs, for whom he would play centerfield. He should bring something significant in return, and the Mets could use the rest of the season to determine whether Victor Diaz is an everyday player.

4. Braden Looper. So many teams -- the Yankees, Red Sox, Braves or even Looper's old team in Florida - need bullpen help. Looper, signed only through this year, would be a worthwhile acquisition by someone willing to give up a prospect or two.

5. Kaz Ishii and Doug Mientkiewicz. We group them together, for this is essentially our reminder to Minaya to dump the garbage. Both are profound disappointments and probably wouldn't bring much in return. But again, why not opt for the lower-tier prospects and/or salary relief that these guys would bring? Don't worry about who replaces them. Just remember to frisk Mientkiewicz on his way out.

"The pickings are slim" right now, one official from a buyer told us last week. Minaya should jump to the front of the line, before the market floods. Before these "New Mets" get on an illusory hot streak and repeat last year's Victor Zambrano fiasco.

Jun 21 2005 10:02 AM

I think you can still get decent value for those guys. Problem is, everyone knows about Glavine's vesting option, which is going to come a lot more quickly than anyone would like, so they'd have to throw some money in. Looper is a no-brainer in my mind; someone will give us a good short-term player or two. Cameron is the one I'd least like to see go, because he has been so good, but if you want value, he's got it. I like his point on Ishii and Mientkiewicz (especially the "frisk Mientkiewicz" part - funny), and they are both somewhat easily replaced.

Piazza can go. Thanks for the memories, Mike; but it's time to move on.

Jun 21 2005 10:13 AM

If we end up being buyers I will puke.

Edgy DC
Jun 21 2005 10:19 AM

Plenty of time to commit one way or the other.

Jun 21 2005 10:27 AM

I've maintained from the outset that this is a .500 team and that this is not the year. My biggest fear is that they do what they did last year and become buyers when they should be sellers. I'd say we will know which way this team will be going after the next 16 games, of which 13 are against NL East teams. 3 in Philly starting tonight, 3 at the Zoo, then the Phillies again (three more games), the Marlins (three) and the Nationals (four).

Jun 21 2005 10:35 AM

is there no market for cliff floyd? i'd rather see him traded and replaced by diaz than cammy...

Jun 21 2005 11:05 AM

Nice article. We're totally sellers, and I'd love to see a lot of those players traded. I don't think Piazza or Glavine would get us much in return, but unloading Glavine's 2006 salary is a plus all on it's own, and moving Piazza would allow us to see how Castro does playing full-time, which should help us figure out what to do next year.

Cam or Floyd, plus Looper should get us some nice prospects. Possibly even top prospects, depending on who we trade with. And moving Cam or Floyd will help us figure out where to play Diaz next year.

Please, for the love of God, don't be a buyer this year, Omar. Even if we're a half game out on July 30, I don't think we should trade for veteran help. Unless it's in the form of young veterans who can help us down the road, ala Adam Dunn.

Johnny Dickshot
Jun 21 2005 11:21 AM

]Please, for the love of God, don't be a buyer this year, Omar. Even if we're a half game out on July 30, I don't think we should trade for veteran help.

So you're on record: Carlos Delgado, half-game out, no?

Jun 21 2005 11:30 AM

Yeah, I'd go on the record as being against that. Delgado's contract was a little too long for my taste, and giving up the kind of prospects it would take to wrest him away from Florida at the trading deadline would push that deal into the unacceptable category.

Now an Adam Dunn type or a Lyle Overbay type or a Prince Fielder type, I'd happily part with a prospect or two at the trading deadline to get. But Delgado's too old and his contract is too long to give up prospects for, at least in our current situation. IMO.

Jun 21 2005 05:33 PM

Dang, I just missed Omar on ESPNNews. The bottom bar was something
like "Mets ready for NL East Title Challenge" or something like that but I
missed the entire thing. Anyone know what he said?