"The problem for the Mets is that after everything that happened to them last year - the injuries, the record, the front office controversies - they're just not very appealing to star players who have choices."
~ Major League GM With Knowledge Of The Situation ~
With such comments like that, you could probably add the name of any “big name” free agent, and their view of the Mets.
John Harper - NY Daily News has a real insightful article which brings to the forefront every Mets fan’s concerns: coming to the Mets is not appealing.
Harper describes how the Mets, whether they offered Jose Reyes as part of the deal (thank God they didn’t) for Halladay, Roy Boy would have invoked his “no trade” clause. Halladay wants what many free agents want. Yes money, but they better opportunity to win. Right now, the Mets don’t offer that.
The same is true for John Lackey. The Mets got the impression at the Winter Meetings that Lackey really wasn’t interested in the Mets. This is why the Mets pursued neither player vigorously.
The same GM of the above quote also stated:
"Halladay wasn't going to the Mets," the GM said. "His people were letting everyone know he was only going to a winner - the Phillies, Red Sox, Yankees, or maybe the Angels, although he wanted to be in the East because he lives in Florida.
If this isn’t a continuing indictment of how the Wilpon’s run this organization, then what is? The minor league system isn’t very good. Although the Mets have some quality players, they lack that killer instinct. There are gaping holes in their line-up (LF, C, 1b, #2 SP), and now free agents don’t want to come here. And I thought it was always about the money.
With what is being coined as “Black Monday”, the signing of Jason Bay becomes imperative.
It is incomprehensible that the team that was on the verge of the World Series in 2006, three years later is an embarrassment. This, along with no minor league system to speak of (other than Ike Davis and Josh Thole), is inexcusable. They have been incompetent in their Rule V pick-ups (see Darren O’Day) as well as the development of their minor league system.
Harper shows how the Phillies have built their team with smart drafting and player development (Rollins, Howard, Utley, Hammels) and key pick-ups like Lee and Werth – has led to a competitive team that is on its way to their fourth NL East crown.
What next? The Yankees swoop in and take Bay away?