New York's always been about star power.
But the Mets will buck that trend this offseason, as Andy Martino of the New York Daily News doesn't foresee the Mets chasing any free-agent starts. That means Cliff Lee, Carl Crawford and Jayson Werth won't be getting phone calls from Queens.
The Mets had no intention of pursuing any high-flight starters when Johan Santana was healthy, and even though he is now out for a good chunk of the 2011 season following surgery, the plans have not changed.
"Those familiar with the team's thinking say the Mets believe they have too much money committed to their roster next season -- at least $130 million, much of which will go to players who have not performed -- to seriously consider spending heavily on free agents," Martino writes.
Indeed, a scan of the 2011 payroll produces some raised eyebrows. Johan Santana leads the way with $22.5 million due, while Carlos Beltran's (pictured) final year of a seven-year pact checks in with a hair over $20 million despite and has missed half of the last two seasons, with 2010's on-field production also very poor.
Oliver Perez and Francisco Rodriguez' $12 million due apiece along with Luis Castillo's $6.25 million pact make up the trio of players the Mets would like nothing more to get rid of. Jason Bay, coming off a horrible season, is on the books for $18 million while David Wright has a defensible $14.25 million due him.
The impending new general manager, who has yet to be named, will likely stay quiet and wait for 2012, when money gets freed up and he can put his stamp on his team. Until then, Mets fans will have to be content with what's shaping up to be another dismal season.
-- Evan Brunell
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