Like most Mets fans, I woke up in complete shock on Wednesday morning. I joked about Steve Cohen re-engaging Scott Boras about Carlos Correa upon hearing news of his press conference with the San Francisco Giants getting postponed.
I wasn’t actually expecting something to happen. But like we’ve said a few times already this offseason, it’s a bad idea to underestimate these Mets.
According to Jon Heyman of The New York Post, who was the first to break this news, Cohen helped this 12-year, $315 million agreement come to fruition while in Hawaii. He had just said over the weekend that there’d be “other free agents” after joining the Correa chase too late. But when given another opportunity to nab his man, he made it happen.
Here’s what Cohen said about this shocking development:
We need one more thing, and this is it. This was important … This puts us over the top. This is a good team. I hope it’s a good team!
Yea, I think this is a good team now. And, finalizing Correa’s deal would put the bow on top of an absolutely incredible offseason. This likely leads to a few questions… some we have answers to and some we’re waiting for.
How much have the Mets spent this offseason?
Before agreeing to terms with Correa, the Mets had spent nearly $500 million overall in free agency. Adding this agreement puts them at around $800 million.
The 2023 payroll is sitting at approximately $380 million. The luxury tax penalty (which was already at about $80 million before this) will likely push the total cost for New York’s 2023 roster to $500 million.
Is a Michael Conforto reunion still on the table?
New York needed another bat for the lineup. Conforto represented an opportunity for that, and the Mets might’ve had an inside track at bringing him home.
Correa gives them the bat they’ve been searching for, so the chances of this happening now are slim to none. However, Mike Mayer of Metsmerized reports that the Mets are still not done making additions. They’re looking for another bat and a relief pitcher. So maybe Scooter is still coming home after all…and maybe Liam Hendriks will join him?
Is the Correa deal official?
No, it’s pending a physical. And since there was an issue with the Giants’ physical, it’ll be interesting to see what happens. However, you have to believe Boras and Cohen talked about the issue and New York isn’t too worried about it.
What happens to Brett Baty and Eduardo Escobar?
Other free-agent moves from the Mets have made the likes of Carlos Carrasco and James McCann available via trade. You’d have to think the same thing will happen for Baty and Escobar once the Correa signing is official. But who knows — maybe not.
Baty made his MLB debut in memorable fashion this past season. But, he ended up posting a 71 wRC+ in 42 big-league plate appearances before hitting the injured list. He’s still only 23 and played just six games in Triple-A before getting promoted in August. So, it’s not outrageous to think Baty could start 2023 in Syracuse. He played a little left field this past season in the minors, so that probably happens more often now.
Escobar will be more attractive in trade talks. He’s a proven veteran who finished 2022 strong. He’s under contract for 2023 with a clip option for 2024, while his luxury-tax salary is just $10 million. I wouldn’t be shocked if he’s on the Mets’ Opening Day roster, though.
Escobar is a switch-hitter who can play multiple infield positions. He could grab some reps at various spots on the field and could, at the very least, join Daniel Vogelbach as part of a platoon at designated hitter. Escobar did post a 130 wRC+ and a .817 OPS in 174 plate appearances against left-handed pitching in 2022.
Or, he could take over DH duties on more of a full-time basis depending on how he performs. If Correa officially becomes a Met, I think Darin Ruf has less of a chance of sticking around in Queens than Escobar.
Have the Mets finally gotten better?
A common theme among many on the Twitter machine is that the Mets have spent hundreds of millions of dollars and hadn’t improved the roster. I quickly got very tired of that narrative, but now it can finally be laid to rest.
The Mets have gotten better. Not only is Correa the hitter they needed, but he’s proven to be a clutch postseason performer. This acquisition is huge on multiple levels if it can get across the finish line.
New York has spent a lot to once again be a contender on paper. We know this was the only option for them heading into the offseason. And still, New York found a way to blow our expectations out of the water.
If anyone counts the Mets out of anything in the future, it’s been proven multiple times over the past month that doing such a thing is absolutely foolish.