In a report this morning for FoxSports.com, Ken Rosenthal does a terrific job explaining why the Mets are petitioning MLB to adjust their rule for draft pick compensation, which would allow Sandy Alderson to sign free-agent OF Michael Bourn at the cost of a second-round draft pick instead of a first-round pick.

The way I understand it, MLB will only seriously consider Alderson's case if he first reaches an agreement with Bourn. The deal can be pending the league's ruling, but they want to see a deal first. I'm sure the Mets prefer to do it the other way around, but beggars can't be choosers. What's more, as Rosenthal points out, Bourn's agent is Scott Boras, and by granting this exception for one draft pick (and setting a precedent), MLB would essentially be doing one team and one agent a massive favor at the expense of also having to address future requests... and it's hard to imagine them doing that, so long as at least one other team is interested in Bourn's services (like the Mariners, and maybe the Rangers).

In either case, I'm skeptical. I'm skeptical the league will help with this. And, I'm even more skeptical that Alderson will give such a long-term contract to a 30-year-old, left-handed hitting, light-weight, strikeout-happy hitter, who is mostly just fast and a good fielder. It's not Alderson's style. He talks of right-handed power and payroll flexibility so much that I don't understand how Bourn fits in.

Now, if they're discussing a one-year deal, which I understand Bourn might be willing to accept (so he can be a free-agent again next winter), it might make some sense. This might also explain why Alderson is aggressively defending his first-round pick. However, to do this, I assume Bourn will want at least $15 million, and it's hard to imagine Alderson spending the rest of his off-season budget on one guy, especially since he still needs more players (specifically in the bullpen). Yes, he can backload a multi-year deal, but then we're back to questioning the value of Bourn over five years, which doesn't seem to fit in to Alderson's long-term goals either. As I said, I'm skeptical.

I like Bourn to a certain extent, especially since his ability and presence in center field might help the team's young pitchers. I'd take him for one year, to fill a void, so long as I can keep that top draft pick. However, I don't think he alone is enough to make a big enough impact on this team's success next year to justify giving up a potential top prospect. He's good, but he's not that good.

The crazy thing is, after writing this and giving it thought, I can't help but feel like we are Charlie Brown, the Mets are Lucy, and the Rumor Mill is the football... At some point, I hope we get a kick in, because I can't help but charge at the ball each time it's out there. But, man, I'm tired of getting my hopes up for action only to see us all fall on our backs each time. That said, I'm reasonable and I understand what's going. As I've said, while I'm tired of watching a losing team, I'm more tired of watching the Boom, Bust and Rebuild Cycles of the last 30 years. So, I'm OK waiting for a more sound, successful and sustainable team to be built, which is what I believe Alderson is doing. But, eventually, be it this year, next year, whenever, the Mets have to do something to actually move forward. Eventually, you have to stop on the foundation and framing, and actually move in to the new house. Eventually, they have to promote an impact arm and bat, make a trade, sign a meaningful free agent... something, anything... to help stop the slide of losing more and more games each season. I'm patient, but my patience is wearing thin.

Again, if you have questions about why and how the Mets are petitioning baseball to make an exception for their first-round pick read Rosenthal's reporthere's the link, click it.

Tags: MetsBlog, Matthew Cerrone

Jul 31, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) (Troy Taormina)
Jul 31, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) (Troy Taormina)

The Mets are one of four teams reported to be interested in trading for Evan Longoria, according to Marc Topkin of Tampa Bay Times. Topkin also reports that the Rays are 'expected' to trade Longoria by April.

In April, a no-trade-clause kicks in for Longoria, which would lessen the team's control of any potential trade.

Longoria, 32, is coming off his worst season in the league, where he hit .256, slugged .424 and had an OBP of .313. Longoria added 20 HR and 86 RBI. In 2016, Longoria hit .276, slugged .521 and had an OBP of .318. He hit a career-high 36 HR and had 98 RBI. 

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New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson during the 2016 MLB general managers meeting at the Omni Scottsdale Resort. (Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson during the 2016 MLB general managers meeting at the Omni Scottsdale Resort. (Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports)

Free agent reliever Matt Albers is expected to sign with a team next week, though the identity of that team is unknown, according to Jerry Crasnic of ESPN.

The Mets have been open about their infatuation with relievers and could still be in the Albers market despite having just signed RH reliever Anthony Swarzak to a two-year deal worth $14 million.

Albers, 34, enjoyed a fantastic 2017 after a disastrous 2016. In 2017, Albers had a 1.62 ERA and .852 WHIP in 61 IP with 63 K. But in 2016 he endured a dreadful 6.31 ERA and 5.26 K/9 rate. It may be a gamble to bank on his 2017 production as the RHP has career marks of 4.13 ERA and 1.39 WHIP.

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Dec 14, 2017; Sandy Alderson during the MLB winter meetings. Credit: Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 14, 2017; Sandy Alderson during the MLB winter meetings. Credit: Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets have roughly one month and -- I assume -- less than $30 million to spend on adding either a second or third baseman, a center fielder or right fielder that can also play first base, another reliever, and -- hopefully -- another starting pitcher as they prepare for the 2018 season.

I have no idea how they're going to accomplish the above with other teams making moves, the clock ticking, and not nearly enough prospects for trades or cash to fill every hole.

It appears Sandy Alderson intends to play this patiently, hoping prices drop to a point that he can spread money around to solve multiple problems with multiple players.

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Jul 4, 2017; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals catcher Jose Lobaton (59) looks on in the second inning against the New York Mets at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports (Patrick McDermott)
Jul 4, 2017; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals catcher Jose Lobaton (59) looks on in the second inning against the New York Mets at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports (Patrick McDermott)

The Mets have signed C Jose Lobaton to a minor league deal with an invite to major league Spring Training, the team announced Friday.

Lobaton, 33, hit .170/.248/.277 with four HR in 51 games last season for the Nationals

He has hit .218/.295/.324 with 21 HR in eight seasons, while playing for the Padres, Rays, and Nationals.

Tags: Kevin Plawecki, Travis d'Arnaud
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Cleveland Indians first baseman Carlos Santana hits a double against the Los Angeles Angels in the second inning at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. (Richard Mackson/USA TODAY Sports)
Cleveland Indians first baseman Carlos Santana hits a double against the Los Angeles Angels in the second inning at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. (Richard Mackson/USA TODAY Sports)

The Phillies have agreed to a three-year deal worth $60 million with free agent 1B Carlos Santana, reports Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.

The deal includes a fourth-year team option, reports Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com.

The Mets, who have been seeking a first baseman who can also play corner outfield, were among roughly 10 teams expressing interest in Santana, Heyman reported in November.

Tags: Dominic Smith
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Aug 24, 2017; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Reds shortstop Zack Cozart (2) looks up after being tagged out at home by Chicago Cubs catcher Rene Rivera (not pictured) during the sixth inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports (David Kohl)
Aug 24, 2017; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Reds shortstop Zack Cozart (2) looks up after being tagged out at home by Chicago Cubs catcher Rene Rivera (not pictured) during the sixth inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports (David Kohl)

Free agent INF Zack Cozart has agreed to a three-year deal with the Angels, the team announced on Friday.

Cozart, who is expected to play third base for the Angels, will earn $38 million during his three-year deal, reports Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.

The Mets were considering making a run at Cozart to play second base, though that possibility was a "long shot", Marc Carig of Newsday reported on Thursday.

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Sep 10, 2017; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers first baseman Mike Napoli (5) in action during the game against the New York Yankees at Globe Life Park in Arlington. The Yankees defeat the Rangers 16-7. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports (Jerome Miron)
Sep 10, 2017; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers first baseman Mike Napoli (5) in action during the game against the New York Yankees at Globe Life Park in Arlington. The Yankees defeat the Rangers 16-7. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports (Jerome Miron)

Mets manager Mickey Callaway has reached out to free agent Mike Napoli about the potential of joining the Mets, Joel Sherman of the NY Post reported earlier this week.

Along with the Mets, the Twins also have interest in Napoli, reports Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News.

Napoli played for the Indians in 2016 while Callaway was the pitching coach.

Tags: Dominic Smith
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Jul 21, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Jerry Blevins (39) (Brad Penner)
Jul 21, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Jerry Blevins (39) (Brad Penner)

Mets LH reliever Jerry Blevins recently discussed his increased curveball usage, new manager Mickey Callaway, and the idea of "bullpening."

Blevins, whose curveball usage in 2017 was a career-high 50.2 percent (up from 31.2 percent in 2016) said he'll speak to Callaway about his curve, but will also seek out the advice of his teammates about that and other things.

"I'll definitely talk to him," Blevins told SNY, "but even talking to Seth Lugo about his curveball or Paul Sewald about his slider. You're constantly tweaking, I always use the adage, 'you're either getting better or you're getting worse,' there's no staying the same. So I'm constantly trying to make myself better."

Tags: Jerry Blevins, Jeurys Familia, Danny Abriano
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Aug 15, 2017; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Cleveland Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis (22) hits a solo home run in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)
Aug 15, 2017; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Cleveland Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis (22) hits a solo home run in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)

The Mets have had "serious" discussions with the Indians about trading for 2B Jason Kipnis, reports Chris Cotillo of SB Nation, who says there has been "traction" between the two clubs.

Of the second basemen the Mets are interested in, there has been more traction on a potential deal for Kipnis than Pirates 2B Josh Harrison, reports SNY contributor Andy Martino.

The 30-year-old Kipnis hit .232/.291/.414 wiht 12 HR in 90 games in 2017 while dealing with injuries throughout the season. He dealt with a shoulder injury before the season, and landed on the disabled list twice during the season due to a hamstring injury. 

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Sep 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler (3) hits a home run in the third inning against the Oakland Athletics at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports (Rick Osentoski)
Sep 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler (3) hits a home run in the third inning against the Oakland Athletics at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports (Rick Osentoski)

Most Recent Update...

Former Tigers 2B Ian Kinsler, who had 10 teams on his no-trade clause, was only willing to accept a trade to the Angels -- where he was dealt on Wednesday night -- reports Anthony French of the Detroit Free Press.

The Tigers had also exchanged names with the Mets, Brewers, and Giants in discussions for Kinsler, but forced the Tigers to deal him to the Angels or wait until July, French explained.

The Mets will now turn to other options like Jason KipnisJosh Harrison, and Cesar Hernandez in their search for a second baseman, but Starlin Castro is "not in the mix," reports Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.

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Jul 6, 2017; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; Charlotte Stone Crabs pitcher Burch Smith (35) (Jasen Vinlove)
Jul 6, 2017; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; Charlotte Stone Crabs pitcher Burch Smith (35) (Jasen Vinlove)

The Mets selected RHP Burch Smith from the Rays with the No. 6 pick in the Rule 5 Draft on Thursday morning at the Winter Meetings before trading him to the Royals for cash considerations..

Smith, 27, had a 1.65 ERA and 0.80 WHIP with 19 strikeouts in 16 1/3 innings (12 relief appearances, one start) for Tampa's Triple-A affiliate in 2017 after missing the 2015 and 2016 seasons.

His lone taste of the majors came in 2013 with the Padres, where he had a 6.44 ERA and 1.65 WHIP with 46 strikeouts in 36 1/3 innings for the Padres.

For his minor league career, Smith has a 3.45 ERA and 1.18 WHIP with 302 strikeouts in 284 2/3 innings over five seasons.

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The MLB Winter Meetings wrap up today in Orlando, culiminating with the Rule 5 Draft. 

Here's what you need to know from yesterday's news and rumors from Orlando...

Tags: Jay Bruce, Michael Conforto
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In tonight's SNY's Meet the MetsCast, Matthew Cerrone, Steve Hoftstetter and Rob Brender recap Day 3 of the MLB Winter Meetings by discussing the Anthony Swarzak signing, trading Matt Harvey, signing Mike Moustakas and Lorenzo Cain, and if the Mets can do all they need to do with what appears to be their available budget...

To listen to the show, click play below or use this link to download...

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Francona on Mickey Callaway 00:03:56
SNY's Steve Gelbs catches up with Indians manager Terry Francona to discuss what the Mets have in Mickey Callaway as their new manager.

The Mets were smart to hire Michey Callaway to be their new manager, Indians skipper Terry Francona said Wednesday during an interview with SNY's Steve Gelbs.

Prior to joining the Mets, Callaway had been Francona's pitching coach in Cleveland.

"They're getting a star," Francona said. "He interviewed off the charts. He got the job and then a couple years later you feel like you're brothers."

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 (Joe Nicholson)
(Joe Nicholson)

Anthony McCarron, SNY.tv | Twitter | Michael Conforto hasn't been medically cleared to swing a bat, but he's got one in his apartment, anyway. "Just to hold," the Mets outfielder said.

"I can't swing it yet, but I just want to feel it in my hands."

That might not sound like much for a player keen on getting back to the workaday duties of his craft after left shoulder surgery. Or for the fan base that knows how desperately the Mets need Conforto next season. But it'll have to do for now, or at least until Conforto sees his surgeon, Dr. Neal ElAttrache, next week in Los Angeles...

Tags: Michael Conforto
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Mets sign Anthony Swarzak 00:04:28
The Mets Hot Stove panel breaks down the Mets' recent acquisition, Anthony Swarzak, and discuss how he drastically improves their bullpen.

Sandy Alderson speaks often about the volatility of relief pitchers, and he's right -- even for professional evaluators, it's hard to tell from one year to the next how any reliever will perform...

Tags: Jerry Blevins, Jeurys Familia
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Aug 1, 2016; Sandy Alderson speaks to reporters. Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 1, 2016; Sandy Alderson speaks to reporters. Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets will "probably" be looking to next fill needs elsewhere on the roster after reportedly coming to terms with RH reliever Anthony Swarzak on a two-year deal worth $14 million, Mets GM Sandy Alderson said Wednesday at the Winter Meetings.

Alderson didn't rule out acquiring another reliever later in the offseason, but said he expected the team's focus to now shift to filling the other needs -- second base and first base/outfield.

The Mets were linked to free agent 3B/1B Todd Frazier earlier on Wednesday. Alderson said earlier this week that he expects Asdrubal Cabrera to play primarily third base this season, but seemed open to the possibility of that changing.

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Oct 16, 2017; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees third baseman Todd Frazier (29) hits a three run home run during the second inning aHouston Astros during game three of the 2017 ALCS playoff baseball series at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports ( Adam Hunger)
Oct 16, 2017; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees third baseman Todd Frazier (29) hits a three run home run during the second inning aHouston Astros during game three of the 2017 ALCS playoff baseball series at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports ( Adam Hunger)

The Mets have been "curious" about free agent 3B Todd Frazier, reports The Post's Joel Sherman.

Sherman adds that the Mets may even be aggressive in trying to sign the 31-year-old who split time with the White Sox and Yankees last season, noting that Frazier could allow Asdrubal Cabrera to move around the infield, and also provide insurance to 1B Dominic Smith

"It's possible but it's not a scenario right now that I foresee," Alderson said Wednesday about acquiring a player whose presence would mean Cabrera doesn't play third base regularly. "It could change. ... we're trying to be flexible -- responding to opportunities. ... we're trying to be flexible and open-minded about it."

Tags: Asdrubal Cabrera
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GEICO SportsNite: Conforto 00:00:57
Mets outfielder Michael Conforto held a Q&A with fans on Monday and stated that he still has no timeline for his injured left shoulder.

Mets OF Michael Conforto  will meet with doctors within two weeks, after which he hopes to be told he can start swinging a bat, he told reporters at the team's annual Coat Drive earlier this week.

It was reported in November that Conforto's recovery was progressing well and was expected to start swinging a bat by late January.

Conforto dislocated his shoulder toward the end of last season, after which he had surgery to repair the posterior capsule. The initial diagnoses was that it would require at least a six-month recovery.

In either case, Mets GM Sandy Alderson said Tuesday he does not expect Conforto to be ready for Opening Day, despite remaining on track during his rehab.

Tags: Michael Conforto
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Oct 1, 2017; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Marlins left fielder Marcell Ozuna (13) rounds the bases after hitting a solo home run in the seventh inning against the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Oct 1, 2017; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Marlins left fielder Marcell Ozuna (13) rounds the bases after hitting a solo home run in the seventh inning against the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

The Marlins have agreed to trade OF Marcell Ozuna to the Cardinals, reports Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports, who says OF Christian Yelich is also on the trading block.

Ozuna, 27, hit .312/.376/.548 with 37 HR and 124 RBI in 159 games for the Marlins in 2017.

The Marlins, who are dramatically cutting payroll under their new ownership group which is led by Derek Jeter, traded OF and 2017 MVP Giancarlo Stanton to the Yankees over the weekend in exchange for Starlin Castro, minor leaguers Jorge Guzman and Jose Devers, and cash considerations.

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Sandy's Shopping List: Swarzak 00:00:37
Right-handed relief pitcher Anthony Swarzak has signed a two-year deal with the Mets.

LATEST UPDATE, 11:38 AM:

The Mets have agreed to a two-year deal worth $14 million with RH reliever Anthony Swarzak, reports Marc Carig of Newsday.

Swarzak had a 2.33 ERA (2.74 FIP) and 1.03 WHIP with 91 strikeouts (a career-high 10.59 K/9) in 77 1/3 innings (70 games) in 2017 for the White Sox and Brewers.

The 32-year-old Swarzak, who almost exclusively features a fastball and slider, saw his stuff tick up in 2017. His fastball averaged 94.7 MPH (up from 93.4 in 2016 and 92.2 in 2015) and his slider averaged 87.1 MPH -- both the fastest of his careeer.

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Winter Meetings 360 Day 3 00:15:51
Andy Martino and Steve Gelbs discuss the latest news from the last day of the Winter Meetings and share their thoughts on the Swarzak move.

Andy Martino and Steve Gelbs discuss the latest news from the last day of the Winter Meetings and share their thoughts on the Anthony Swarzak move.

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Aug 12, 2017; St. Petersburg, FL, USA;Cleveland Indians right fielder Jay Bruce (32) hits a RBI single during the first inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Aug 12, 2017; St. Petersburg, FL, USA;Cleveland Indians right fielder Jay Bruce (32) hits a RBI single during the first inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

The Mets met with Jay Bruce's agent and remain "very interested" in a reunion, reports Mike Puma of the NY Post, who adds that the Mets have not yet made an offer.

The Blue Jays are also showing interest in Bruce, FanRag's Jon Heyman tweeted Monday.

Bruce is seeking a five-year deal worth as much as $18 million per season, teams with interest in him recently told ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick.

However, according to Newsday's Marc Carig, while the Mets and Bruce are open to a possible reunion, the Mets are reportedly only interested in giving him a three-year contract.

Tags: Jay Bruce
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Tigers 2B Ian Kinsler and RH reliever Shane Greene. Credit: USA Today
Tigers 2B Ian Kinsler and RH reliever Shane Greene. Credit: USA Today

I wonder if the Mets are trying to get reliever Shane Greene with 2B Ian Kinsler from the Tigers?

According to MLB.com's Jason Beck, the Tigers are close to trading Kinsler after reportedly holding substantive trade talks the last two weeks with at least the Mets and Angels.

Kinsler has the Mets and nine other teams on his no-trade list, but that's not seen as a deal-breaker if the Tigers agree to send Kinsler to the Mets, reports SNY contributor Andy Martino.

I wrote Tuesday night that the Mets were on the same page with the Tigers when it came to swapping players, but that the two sides were still not in agreement about how to deal with Kinsler's $11 million salary. The next day, Detroit's GM said he has exchanging names with teams interested in Kinsler, but they had yet to reach an agreement...

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Aug 29, 2017; Billy Hamilton double at Great American Ball Park. Credit: Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 29, 2017; Billy Hamilton double at Great American Ball Park. Credit: Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

The Reds are seeing enough interest in center fielder Billy Hamilton that it's possible he could be traded before the end of this week's Winter Meetings, the Cincinnati Enquirer's Zach Buchanan reported Tuesday afternoon.

The Reds have been conducting trade talks for Hamilton since last week, according to The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal, who felt the Mets, Giants, Rangers, and Mariners would be interested in him.

"The Reds don't have to move him, though," Rosenthal added. "They can see what happens in the first half and them move him at the deadline when he'll still be available for two pennant races."

In either case, be it this winter or next summer, Rosenthal believes the Reds will move Hamilton the as soon as they are presented with an acceptable deal.

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Alderson on the Mets' bullpen 00:06:23
Mets general manager Sandy Alderson discusses how the front office plans to address the team's bullpen this offseason.

The MLB Winter Meetings are underway in Orlando, where agents and team executives are meeting and discussing signings and trades.  

Here's what you need to know from yesterday's news and rumors from Orlando...

Tags: Matt Harvey, TJ Rivera, Wilmer Flores
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In tonight's SNY's Meet the MetsCast, Matthew Cerrone and Rob Brender recap Day 2 of the MLB Winter Meetings by discussing whether to acquire Ian Kinsler, how to improve the bullpen on a strict budget, and whether it's better to sign Mike Moustakas or Neil Walker...

To listen to the show, click play below or use this link to download...

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Aug 18, 2017; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado (13) connects on a grand slam home run in the bottom of the 9th inning to win the game against the Los Angeles Angels at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports (Mitch Stringer)
Aug 18, 2017; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado (13) connects on a grand slam home run in the bottom of the 9th inning to win the game against the Los Angeles Angels at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports (Mitch Stringer)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter | Orlando, Fla. -- It's Tuesday of the winter meetings. The Metsies are quiet. So allow me a few hundred words of speculation about an idea that is likely fictional, but shouldn't be:

The Mets should trade for Manny Machado. With one move, they could excite their fans, grab the back page back from the Yankees, and try to extend their window to win with one of the best players in baseball.

Money is not an issue here. Machado will make about $17 million next year, roughly what the Mets paid Neil Walker in 2017. Sandy Alderson has said many times that there is no such thing as a bad one-year deal...

Tags: Steven Matz
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New York Mets' Matt Harvey (33) delivers a pitch during the first inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Friday, April 21, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II) (Frank Franklin II/AP)
New York Mets' Matt Harvey (33) delivers a pitch during the first inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Friday, April 21, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II) (Frank Franklin II/AP)

Mets GM Sandy Alderson suggested on Tuesday that the team will not be trading RHP Matt Harvey, who has been the subject of rumors at the Winter Meetings.

"All I'm weighing right now are the opinions of (manager) Mickey Callaway and (pitching coach) Dave Eiland," Alderson said. "And they don't want to lose him."

Alderson's tune had been different on Monday when asked about Harvey.

Tags: Matt Harvey, Danny Abriano
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Latest on relief pitching market 00:01:55
Jim Duquette shares some updates on how the market for relief pitchers is shaping out, and discusses how the Mets plan to use their bullpen.

Mets manager Mickey Callaway suggested on Tuesday that the team might not have a designated closer in 2018 -- instead focusing on matchups and reacting when high-leverage situations arise.

"I think that we're going to pitch guys when it makes sense," Callaway said at the Winter Meetings in response to a question about Jeurys Familia. "I'm going to pitch guys to their strengths and they're going to face the batters they should be facing."

Callaway said it could work out that Familia is in place to save every game, but that they're not "locked in" to that...

Tags: Jerry Blevins, Jeurys Familia, Danny Abriano
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Winter Meetings 360 Day 2 00:17:01
Steve Gelbs and Andy Martino answer various questions and discuss the trade rumors surrounding Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey.

Steve Gelbs and Andy Martino answer various questions and discuss the trade rumors surrounding Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey.

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Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado (13) looks on during an interleague baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Wednesday, May 10, 2017, in Washington. The Nationals won 7-6. (AP Photo/Nick Wass) (Nick Wass/AP)
Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado (13) looks on during an interleague baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Wednesday, May 10, 2017, in Washington. The Nationals won 7-6. (AP Photo/Nick Wass) (Nick Wass/AP)

The Orioles are shopping 3B Manny Machado, and are seeking two young, controllable starting pitchers in return, reports Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. However, Machado -- who is set for free agency after the 2018 season -- wants to return to shortstop this season, notes Rosenthal.

The Mets, Phillies, Braves, Giants, and Angels could make up part of the market for Machado, with the Yankees potentially on the periphery, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe noted in September. But with Machado now seeking to play shortstop, it's fair to believe his list of potential suitors could be different.

Danny Abriano, SNY.tv | Twitter | Earlier this offseason, while tossing around outside the box Mets ideas with colleagues, one I suggested was 'trade Jacob deGrom for Manny Machado and sign one of the higher-end free agent starting pitchers to replace him.'

Tags: Asdrubal Cabrera, Jose Reyes, Wilmer Flores
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Callaway on possible free agents 00:06:29
Mickey Callaway discusses the Mets' starting pitching as well as the team's mindset regarding potential free agents on Mets Hot Stove.

The MLB Winter Meetings are underway in Orlando, where agents and team executives are meeting and discussing signings and trades.  

Here's what happened with the Mets on Monday in Orlando...

Tags: Matt Harvey, TJ Rivera, Wilmer Flores
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In tonight's MLB Winter Meetings edition of SNY's Meet the MetsCast, Matthew Cerrone, Steve Hofstetter and Rob Brender discuss Sandy Alderson's comments and apparent approach to spending, roster building and getting back to the postseason in 2018...

To listen to the show, click play below or use this link to download...

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New York Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) throws in the first inning of a baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies, Friday, Sept. 29, 2017, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Laurence Kesterson) (Laurence Kesterson/AP)
New York Mets starting pitcher Matt Harvey (33) throws in the first inning of a baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies, Friday, Sept. 29, 2017, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Laurence Kesterson) (Laurence Kesterson/AP)

The Mets have talked to at least two teams with interest in trading for RHP Matt Harvey, two sources recently told Daily News reporter Kristie Ackert.

Additionally, Andy Martino of SNY reported Monday night that the Cubs are also among teams with interest in Harvey, but noted that it is not clear how much interest they have.

Tags: Matt Harvey
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Mickey Callaway gestures at the podium after he was introduced to the media. (AP)
Mickey Callaway gestures at the podium after he was introduced to the media. (AP)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Orlando, Fla. -- It was at this very property, the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort, where the Mets introduced Curtis Granderson four years ago. This was a seminal moment for the Sandy Alderson era, a signal that the rebuild was winding down, and the team was ready to be relevant again.

The giddiness was so pervasive that day that Granderson even slipped out of character for a moment and offered a usable quote: "A lot of the people that I have met in New York have always said that true New Yorkers are Mets fans," he said, to considerable surprise among reporters accustomed to his bland avoidance of most questions.

Two playoff appearances, one National League pennant, and a 92-loss season later, the Mets are in a different phase of their cycle. In the same room where Granderson once donned the blue and orange, the Yankees introduced Giancarlo Stanton, baseball's most charismatic star, and the Mets … well, the Mets were trying to decide if they wanted to trade for Ian Kinsler, or maybe sign Bryan Shaw. This is a tough contrast -- or bad optics, as they say in the PR business...

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Sandy Alderson is surrounded by reporters during the 2013 MLB Winter Meetings (Credit: Manning-USA TODAY Sports)
Sandy Alderson is surrounded by reporters during the 2013 MLB Winter Meetings (Credit: Manning-USA TODAY Sports)

Sandy Alderson spoke Sunday in Orlando and said the Mets are unwilling to pay top dollar for a relief pitcher; acquiring a starting pitcher is fourth on their list of three priorities; and he is not likely to acquire a first baseman who would block Dominic Smith.

Similarly, while the Mets have reportedly expressed interest in trading for second basemen Josh Harrison (Pirates) and Ian Kinsler (Tigers), two New York beat reporters said Sunday they are skeptical the Mets have enough talent or financial flexibility to match up for either player in trade.

Is Alderson serious, or is he saying these things as a negotiating tactic? 

I suppose anything is possible. I mean, like most GMs, Alderson does have a history of saying one thing to reporters then doing something entirely different...

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Winter Meetings 360 Day 1 00:15:22
Steve Gelbs and Andy Martino discuss the Yanks' trade for Giancarlo Stanton and answer questions about the Mets' ventures this offseason.

Steve Gelbs and Andy Martino discuss the Yanks' trade for Giancarlo Stanton and answer questions about the Mets' ventures this offseason.

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Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Alex Colome throws a pitch during the ninth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Tropicana Field. (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports Images)
Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Alex Colome throws a pitch during the ninth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Tropicana Field. (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports Images)

The Mets are interested in acquiring Rays closer Alex Colome, reports Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times, who says the Cardinals, Rockies, and perhaps the Cubs are also in on Colome.

Colome, 28, had a 3.24 ERA (3.37 FIP) and 1.20 WHIP with 58 strikeouts in 66 2/3 innings (65 appearances), while saving a league-leading 47 games last season for the Rays.

He earned $547,900 last season and is arbitration eligible each of the next three seasons, after which he is eligible for free agency.

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Ryan Goins (17) (Kevin Sousa)
Ryan Goins (17) (Kevin Sousa)

The Mets have interest in signing free agent INF Ryan Goins, who was recently non-tendered by the Blue Jays, reports Joel Sherman of the NY Post.

Sherman suggests that if signed, Goins could potentially form one side of a second base platoon with either Wilmer Flores or T.J. Rivera (who is recovering from Tommy John surgery).

Goins, 29, hit .237/.286/.356 with nine HR in 143 games this past season for the Blue Jays. A left-handed hitter, Goins hit all nine of his home runs against right-handed pitchers.

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Aug 1, 2016; Sandy Alderson speaks to reporters. Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 1, 2016; Sandy Alderson speaks to reporters. Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The MLB Winter Meetings officially begin today in Orlando. The conference provides the opportunity for hundreds of team executives and dozens of player agents to meet and discuss potential offseason signings and trades.

The three-day event is covered by countless local and national media outlets and runs non-stop through Thursday morning, when MLB holds its annual Rule 5 Draft.

Sandy Alderson addressed New York reporters upon arriving at the Meetings on Sunday...

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Mets Hot Stove: Gelbs & Martino 00:04:08
Steve Gelbs and Andy Martino report from the Winter Meetings and discuss the Mets' options at second base and in the bullpen.

Mets GM Sandy Alderson said he believes infielder Asrubal Cabrera will likely spend most of the 2018 season at third base despite his versatility to play each infield position.

The Mets had eight different players spend time at third base, with Cabrera logging the second-most innings to Wilmer Flores. But while Cabrera has spent most of his MLB career at shortstop and has played a significant amount of time at second base, Alderson said he thinks Cabrera would likely be New York's third baseman.

"I think his versatility gives us the option [to sign a free-agent third baseman], but at the same time, we've kind of zeroed him in at third base and we don't want to move him around, so while he gives us some flexibility, I'm not sure we want to exercise it," Alderson said at the MLB Winter Meetings on Sunday.

Tags: Amed Rosario, Asdrubal Cabrera, Jose Reyes, Matt Reynolds, TJ Rivera, Wilmer Flores
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Mets Winter Meetings Preview 00:04:08
The Mets Hot Stove crew breaks down which players the Mets should prioritize at the Winter Meetings in Florida this week.

Mets GM Sandy Alderson said starting pitching is not one of New York's major priorities heading into the MLB Winter Meetings despite the fact their rotation had the 27th-ranked ERA as a team last year.

"I'd say that, as it stands right now, [starting pitching] would probably be fourth on a list of three," Alderson told reporters on Sunday, indicating the team is instead focusing on bolstering the bullpen, adding a bat to the lineup and solidifying its situation at first base and in the outfield.

Mets starters went 49-64 last season with a 5.14 ERA, which was the second-worst among all National League teams. They combined to throw the fourth-fewest innings among all 30 teams.

Tags: Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey, Noah Syndergaard, Rafael Montero, Robert Gsellman, Seth Lugo, Steven Matz, Zack Wheeler
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Oct 1, 2017; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Marlins right fielder Giancarlo Stanton (27) stretches prior to the game against the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Oct 1, 2017; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Marlins right fielder Giancarlo Stanton (27) stretches prior to the game against the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

Because of the size of Giancarlo Stanton's contract, it didn't make sense for the Mets to "feign" any interest in him, GM Sandy Alderson said Sunday at the Winter Meetings in Orlando, FL.

Alderson also made a joke, saying "with Brandon Nimmo in right field, we just didn't feel that we had a need there."

The Marlins have agreed to trade Stanton to the Yankees, with a press conference expected Monday, according to multiple reports.

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New York Mets first baseman Dominic Smith (22) at Citi Field. (Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets first baseman Dominic Smith (22) at Citi Field. (Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports)

Despite saying he felt first baseman Dominic Smith did not play well enough in his brief MLB stint last season to already earn the starting job in 2018, Mets GM Sandy Alderson said he and the franchise remain optimistic in Smith's potential moving forward.

Speaking at the MLB Winter Meetings on Sunday, Alderson said the team, which has reportedly considered making a run at several free-agent first basemen, including Eric Hosmer and Carlos Santana, likely wouldn't make a move that would take Smith out of the equation for next season

"I wouldn't expect us to do something that totally eliminates Dominic as a possibility," Alderson said. "We're still very high on Dominic, some of my comments earlier in the offseason notwithstanding."

 

Tags: Dominic Smith
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 (Gary A. Vasquez)
(Gary A. Vasquez)

Relief pitchers Brandon Morrow and Luke Gregerson, both of whom drew interest from the Mets, are reportedly off the market after agreeing to two year deals elsewhere.

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Sep 21, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler (3) make a play on a ball hit by Minnesota Twins third baseman Eduardo Escobar (not pictured) in the second inning at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports (Rick Osentoski)
Sep 21, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler (3) make a play on a ball hit by Minnesota Twins third baseman Eduardo Escobar (not pictured) in the second inning at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports (Rick Osentoski)

There is skepticism about whether the Mets will be able to acquire 2B Ian Kinsler from the Tigers, reports Anthony DiComo of MLB.com.

Tags: Starlin Castro
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Jay Bruce just before driving in a run for the Mets (Credit: Charles LeClaire, USA Today Sports)
Jay Bruce just before driving in a run for the Mets (Credit: Charles LeClaire, USA Today Sports)

The Mets are expecting to meet with Jay Bruce's agent at the winter meetings, reports Mike Puma of the New York Post, who says the two sides have only had preliminary discussions.

Sources recently told Newsday's Marc Carig that Bruce and the Mets were both interested in the possibility of a reunion.

Tags: Jay Bruce
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Oct 18, 2017; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees second baseman Starlin Castro (14) hits a double during the second inning against the Houston Astros in game five of the 2017 ALCS playoff baseball series at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports ( Adam Hunger)
Oct 18, 2017; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees second baseman Starlin Castro (14) hits a double during the second inning against the Houston Astros in game five of the 2017 ALCS playoff baseball series at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports ( Adam Hunger)

The Mets are planning to talk to the Marlins about 2B Starlin Castro, reports Mike Puma of the New York Post and Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News.

Tags: Starlin Castro
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