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As noted on Sunday, OF Reed Johnson was released by the Blue Jays and his now a free agent.

According to both Ken Rosenthal at, and Jayson Stark at, the Cubs have expressed the most interest in Johnson.

Over the weekend, Omar Minaya told reporters that, while he and his staff will discuss Johnson, like with all available players, he is essentially content with Angel Pagan and Brady Clark.

Minaya planned to meet with team officials to discuss Johnson last night, according to Newsday.

…as i have said before, i believe the Mets are seeking a way to find a player who fits their overall needs better than johnson, pagan or clark, like Xavier Nady for instance…however, nady is far more costly than the team is willing to pay, which is why it looks more and more like pagan will be the team’s replacement for Moises Alou

In a recent post to his blog for, Jayson Stark wrote:

“The Mets love Marcus Thames, but they’re not going to trade Aaron Heilman for him.”

According to Stark, while the Mets prefer Thames or Nady, “They continue to kick the tires on a group that includes Reed Johnson, Ryan Freel and Juan Rivera.”

However, in the following day’s Daily News, citing team officials, Adam Rubin wrote that the Mets are unwilling to trade a young pitching prospect, such as Jon Niese, for a player like Rivera, “thwarting any potential deal with the Angels.”

…i also can’t believe the Mets will trade heilman, especially with Duaner Sanchez likely to begin the year in St. Lucie…

…so, if nady is essentially unavailable, and thames and rivera are too expensive, that leaves johnson, who may or may not be better than clark or pagan, which is what Minaya and Company were likely discussing last night…

…now, if thames can be had by paying the way of Jorge Sosa or Scott Schoeneweis, he’s a strong play, but i just can’t see Detroit selling so low like that, especially with Curtis Granderson starting the year on the disabled list…personally, i’d rather have sosa or schoeneweis, because i value pitching, even mediocre pitching, far more than i value bench players

In a post to MetsGeek, Dan Scotto explains why the Mets should acquire Johnson.

…the thing is, dan did not mention that reed is coming off back surgery, which is probably the single biggest reason he is a free agent right now…i guess they don’t list injuries on the stat page

Meanwhile, at Mets Fever, Ed Ryan suggests 34–year-old, switch-hitting OF Jeff DaVanon, who is a free agent after being cut by the Padres.

…i’m not sure, but it feels like ed has recommended every single available and unavailable player to the Mets this season

DaVanon hit .429 in 14 at-bats against lefties last season, but just .205 in 40 games against left-handed pitchers in 2006.

…again, though, are any of these players better than pagan or clark, and if they are only marginally better then where are they all going to play…’s Ted Berg has been writing about the team’s need for this sort of player for months now, long before any one else was discussing the topic…personally, though, i could go either way, and am fine with any of these choices, because i just don’t think this is the end-all-be-all of reasons why the Mets will or will not win in 2008…so, flip a coin, make a choice and be done with it

Tags: MetsBlog
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