The Mets and 2B Neil Walker have not had contract extension talks since spring training, and are not likely to talk about it again until the offseason, FoxSports.com's Ken Rosenthal said on air Saturday.
The Mets and Walker briefly discussed the framework for a contract extension earlier this spring, but talks have seemingly been tabled >> Read more from late-February.
"There is no other place that I'd want to be," he told reporters in February, when asked about possibility of a new contract.
Walker (20) gets ready to take batting practice at Tradition Field during March, 2017 (USA Today Images)
Walker, 31, is being paid $17.2 million this season after accepting a qualifying offer last fall.
He had season-ending back surgery in 2016 and is currently batting .248 with a .318 OBP and 16 extra base hits, while slugging .408 in 41 games.
"I can tell as soon as I wake up in the morning that anything that I dealt with basically for four years is completely gone," Walker said this past March.
In 154 games for the Mets since being acquired by trade after 2015, Walker is batting .272 with 27 HR and 79 RBI. He has only played second base, but has said he's open to playing third and first base.
The way I understood it, Walker was very interested in signing an extension with the Mets during multiple points after last season and early in spring training. Similarly, I believe the Mets would love to have him back, a) because he's developed in to an important cog in the clubhouse culture, but also b) because they like the idea of having a solid, everyday second baseman the next few years when rookie Amed Rosario is adjusting to the big leagues...
However, the Mets wanted Walker to take a 30-to-40 percent reduction in salary for this season, essentially overriding the qualifying offer and building 2017 in to the new contract. I think Walker was probably OK with this, but the MLB Player's Union almost certainly was not. And so talks ended. My hunch is that all sides agreed to punt so that this year is not an issue and essentially hold new talks about a new contract at the end of the season.