The buzz about Javy Báez sticking with the New York Mets continues to get louder, despite the thumbs down stuff that really wasn’t that long ago. Báez wound up getting absurdly hot down the stretch, as he does, and the mutual affection grows.
Last we heard, Báez sure sounded like a guy who wanted to stay with the Mets and his friend, Francisco Lindor, and it sounded like Lindor was trying to help make that happen.
The latest has the Mets and Báez possibly getting together on a new deal early in the offseason.
"On the day of thumbgate, it was a near-certainty that Báez would soon be a former Met. Now, there is a real chance that [they] will agree early in the offseason."
— SNY (@SNYtv) October 19, 2021
From SNY, emphasis mine:
On the day of thumbgate, it was a near-certainty that Baez would soon be a former Met. Now, according to league sources, there is a real chance that Baez and the Mets will agree early in the offseason on a contract extension that would install him at second base for years to come.
Baez could still hit the open market and take his place among the class of elite free agent shortstops that includes Carlos Correa, Trevor Story, and Corey Seager. If he does, the Yankees are expected to be a crosstown suitor, because they were one of the most aggressive teams in pursuit of Baez at this year’s trade deadline, according to sources.
But if the Mets make a serious offer early, Baez would be inclined to stay. Some free agencies, especially those of star players, drag on until March. This one does not have to.
Read the full report for more, but the tenor is clear: there are those out there who think the Mets might now jump to lock Báez down, and Báez might be receptive to it. What a freaking turn of events. It wasn’t that long ago that it seemed like the Cubs might be able to wait out Javy’s market and bring him back on a reasonable short-term deal.
Now the question is whether those rumors of a $150 million+ price tag come to fruition, or if Báez would have to take less to get a deal done quickly, given the uncertainty with the CBA. Then again, Steve Cohen showed he was willing to leap to lock down Francisco Lindor at a probably-over-market price tag after a trade, so maybe he’ll want to do the same with Báez to keep the duo together.
(Side note: The Mets don’t have a GM in place right now, and their President, Sandy Alderson, was supposed to be transitioning out of being the top baseball man. But if the Mets are going to get a deal done early in the offseason, it’ll have to be driven by Alderson/Cohen/others currently in house, because it’s still gonna take them a minute to land a new top baseball exec (they keep getting turned down … ), and who knows if that person is going to immediately sprint to sign a monster contract.)