All things considered, it's still too early in the off-season to read the hand of just about any general manager. But if you're a Mets fan, it's probably never too early to ask whether your GM knows what he's doing. Over at Faith and Fear in Flushing, Jason Fry cranks the pessimism to eleven and questions whether some relatively minor decisions on Omar Minaya's part indicate a lack of a coherent plan for 2010.
One of his concerns is the decision last season to trade Billy Wagner to Boston, shedding $3.5 million in salary but also forfeiting the draft picks they would have received in compensation if the type-A free agent stayed with the Mets and signed elsewhere (which he did with Atlanta yesterday). Fry argues that it's further proof that the Mets don't have much of an interest in improving their team via the draft, something that's tough to argue with: They spent just $3.1 million in the 2009 draft, last in baseball.
But Fry is also befuddled by the $2 million in salary that Alex Cora will receive in 2010 to, in his words, "be nice to Kevin Burkhardt and ground out." Allow us to quote the following, devastating passage:
What mystery team out there was bidding Alex Cora's price up? Who, exactly, were the Mets competing with? Was it the same team that bid them up on Luis Castillo and Oliver Perez?
I really don't understand it. Perhaps Omar isn't aware that mirrors reflect, and spends his winters madly competing with Ramo, the GM of the mysterious Stems, who somehow always covets the same players poor Omar wants.
Ouch. All we can really add is that, if it turns out that Minaya doesn't have much of a plan for 2010 — or even if he has one and doesn't execute it particularly well — both Omar and Ramo will be getting their résumés together sooner rather than later.