The Houston Astros head home needing just one more win against the Philadelphia Phillies to clinch another World Series title. Whether the Fall Classic ends on Saturday or Sunday, it’ll move us that much closer to the MLB offseason and Hot Stove rumors. The Mets and Yankees are two teams with roster holes to fill and money that needs to be spent.
Both New York squads will watch 2022 impact players officially enter the open market. There’s hope in Queens and the Bronx that at least some of them will be retained for 2023 and beyond. What could their next contracts look like, though?
The New York Post‘s Jon Heyman ranked the top 30 MLB free agents this winter in one of his latest articles. Within that article, he shared the potential market for each player, as well as a contract prediction in years and total value.
Heyman noted the contract prediction was from an “outside expert”. That’s quite vague, but based on what he’s done in the past, it could be a player agent or current/former baseball executive.
Mets free agents
Jacob deGrom. According to Heyman, the right-hander’s market includes the Mets, Texas Rangers, and Los Angeles Dodgers. His contract prediction comes in at three years and $125 million. This would be just under what New York gave Max Scherzer last winter (three years, $130 million).
Edwin Diaz. One of the Mets’ two reported internal free-agent priorities. His market at the moment looks like the Mets, Yankees, Dodgers, and St. Louis Cardinals. His contract projection is for five years and $105 million. That’d be a record for relievers, which Diaz is trying to accomplish.
Brandon Nimmo. Thanks to being a top center fielder in this year’s free-agent class, the Scott Boras client will have plenty of suitors. Heyman lists the Mets, Rangers, Colorado Rockies, Seattle Mariners, San Francisco Giants, Detroit Tigers, and Boston Red Sox as interested teams. Contract prediction: seven years, $145 million.
Chris Bassitt. The right-hander set new career-high marks with 181.2 innings pitched and 15 wins. He was the only Mets starter to qualify for the ERA title. He has a $19 million option that will surely be declined. His market could include the Mets, Rangers, Cardinals, and Toronto Blue Jays. Contract prediction: three years, $66 million.
Taijuan Walker. The 2021 All-Star has proven to be a useful starter at the backend of rotations. Heyman notes his early market as the Mets, Rangers, and Mariners. Contract prediction: five years, $70 million.
Adam Ottavino. Diaz was phenomenal as the Mets’ closer, but Ottavino was clutch as part of the bridge between starters and getting a lead to the ninth inning. The Mets, Rockies, Red Sox, and Philadelphia Phillies could all have interest. Contract prediction: two years, $20 million.
Yankees free agents
Aaron Judge. Everyone will be watching to see where the AL single-season home run record holder will sign this winter. Some of the biggest contenders appear to be the Yankees, Giants, and Dodgers. Contract prediction: nine years, $330 million. That’s much more than New York’s extension offer last spring, but it should easily be something they can afford.
Anthony Rizzo. The first baseman will likely opt for free agency instead of his 2023 contract in the Bronx. Early suitors could be the Yankees, Giants, and Rangers. Contract prediction: two years, $40 million.
Jameson Taillon. The hurler had a solid season in the Bronx, and the Yankees are among the teams that would like to install him in their 2023 rotation. Other teams who could be interested include the Mets, Rangers, and Giants. Contract prediction: four years, $60 million.
Andrew Benintendi. One of New York’s big trade-deadline acquisitions missed the end of the year because of injury. Maybe there will be a reunion in the Bronx, though. Heyman lists the Yankees, Tigers, Rockies, Red Sox, and Rangers as potential suitors. Contract prediction: four years, $56 million.
We don’t necessarily know what all of the priorities are for the Mets and Yankees at this point in the offseason. Well, outside of the big stuff, at least. Retaining guys like Diaz, Nimmo, and deGrom are likely at the top of the Mets’ list. For the Yankees, Judge is the obvious answer.
But when you look at these contract predictions, none of them are outrageous given the situation. Finances shouldn’t be an issue if the numbers end up around here. Of course, that can change once free agency starts and teams start to make their respective pitches to players.