By retaining Asdrubal Cabrera and Jerry Blevins, the Mets enter 2018 with roughly $70 million in payroll commitments. They also will likely add another $40-50 million to retain arbitration-eligible players, such as Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey, AJ Ramos, and Jeurys Familia.
As a result, Alderson technically already has a $110-120 million payroll before adding anyone new to the roster. According to reports, though they started last season at a franchise-high $155 million, ownership prefers to cap spending around $140 million, which would explain how Carig estimates $30 million in potential acquisitions.
Based on reports and speculation, Alderson will attempt to add at least one more infielder and outfielder, an established reliever, and a reliable, veteran starting pitcher.
In other words, Carig writes, "It will be Alderson's job to stretch a dollar, and solutions will almost certainly have to come from a combination of free-agent signings and trades."
In an article last week for the Daily News, columnist John Harper guessed that Alderson might end up signing outfielder Jay Bruce, infielder Eduardo Nunez, and relief pitcher Brandon Kintzler, who he estimates will combine to earn $38 million next season.
Similarly, in the NY Post, Ken Davidoff projects the Mets only signing two free agents, reliever Bryan Shaw and LHP Jason Vargas, who would combine to earn only $18 million next season's roster.
My hunch had been that Alderson would be given $20-30 million to spend on new acquisitions, which is slightly less than Carig's estimate and potentially significantly less than what Harper is thinking. Obviously, I hope I'm wrong and Harper is right. Otherwise -- like last year -- they're going to live in fear knowing one major injury will cause a total disaster.
Matthew Cerrone (Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Contact) is lead writer of MetsBlog.com, which he created in 2003. He also hosts the MetsBlog Podcast, which you can subscribe to here. He recently left his position as Executive Editor and Dir. of Digital Content for SNY.TV to help sports brands build their own digital content businesses...