Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer
The Mets are not going to sign Robinson Cano or Jacoby Ellsbury this off season, people familiar with the team’s thinking said. However, they are very interested in Shin-Soo Choo… and they’d also like to trade for power.
These two moves, plus signing a veteran starting pitcher with a track record of success, seem to be the off-season’s ideal shopping list.
However, Scott Boras is going to try and get at least a $100 million deal for Choo, the powerful agent told Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.
Heyman talked to three league executives who guessed Choo will instead end up signing a four- or five-year deal worth around $15 million a season, similar to contracts signed by B.J. Upton, Michael Bourn and Nick Swisher.
The way I’ve heard it, the Mets prefer to pay Choo slightly more than Bourn, who signed with the Indians for four-years at $12 million a season. According to Heyman, in addition to the Mets, the Rangers and Cubs have also discussed the possibility of signing Choo.
“The value of a leadoff hitter who has a .420 on-base percentage, 20-stolen base speed, 20-home run power, the ability to score 100 runs, and who has the ability to play center field and is a Gold Glove type defender in right field is immense,” Boras told Heyman about Choo.
In addition, as ESPN.com’s Mark Simon recently pointed out, Choo swung at just under 40 percent of pitches thrown to him this season, which is textbook hitting in the eyes of Sandy Alderson & Co.
That said, Simon also identifies major concerns about Choo, which is the outfielder’s weaker defense, struggles against left-handed pitching and overall stats that may be inflated by playing in hitter-friendly Great American Ballpark.
The Mets are interested, and so are Boras and Choo, says the early buzz in baseball. However, guy is going to test the market, despite enjoying his time in Cincinnati and having interest in returning to the Reds..
There is a big difference between signing a 31-year-old to a four-year, $60 million deal and a seven-year, $105 million deal…
Also in the outfield and at first base on Heyman’s recent list of the Top 50 Free Agents are: Hunter Pence, Nelson Cruz, Kendry Morales, Carlos Beltran, Curtis Granderson, Justin Morneau, Corey Hart, Nate McLouth, Michael Morse and James Loney.