In his article, Carig quotes a source who compares the Mets’ pursuit of Drew to their pursuit of Michael Bourn last offseason:
The Mets remain in contact with Scott Boras, the agent for shortstop Stephen Drew, according to a person with knowledge of the talks. But the source likened the situation to the Mets’ pursuit of outfielder Michael Bourn late last winter. Bourn ultimately landed with the Indians, but not before the Mets made a serious run at signing him, mostly because he had lowered his asking price as the season drew near.
There’s definitely a similarity to the Bourn situation and the Drew situation (like Bourn, Drew will sign late and appears to have a limited market), but one enormous detail – that likely prevented the deal with Bourn – is the fact that the Mets were waiting on a decision regarding what the fate of their first round draft pick would be in the event they signed Bourn. There are no such obstacles getting in the way of the Mets and a potential union with Drew.
Carig’s article has a headline that suggests that Ruben Tejada is looking “more and more” like the Mets’ shortstop for 2014. There’s certainly a strong chance that he is, but if anything, what we’ve been hearing over the last week makes it seem that there’s a solid chance the Mets could sign Drew.
A few days ago, Mets special assistant J.P. Ricciardi appeared on WEEI radio and told the hosts (when prompted) that he “thinks” the Mets are happy heading into 2014 with Tejada as their shortstop. In many articles that have been written since, the word “thinks” has been removed from the text when Ricciardi’s comments have been mentioned. This isn’t some conspiracy theory…I just find it odd that a very important part of Ricciardi’s quote is being left out.
There are many who continue to believe that Drew will wind up back with the Red Sox, but it really doesn’t seem like Boston has any intention of offering Drew more than a one year deal. If they do, the Mets will probably not counter, but every report has indicated that the Red Sox intend to hold the line at one year (if they make Drew an offer at all).
Before Masahiro Tanaka was posted, it seemed that the Yankees might jump in on Drew (even though they have two shortstops and Drew would have to learn a new position), but that seems much less likely now.
Two other teams who could be fits for Drew are Minnesota and Houston (another team that’s interested in Tanaka), but they haven’t been linked to him.
If you think about this logically, Drew to the Mets makes tons of sense. It’s fair to be skeptical that they’ll agree to a deal, but saying it’s unlikely is being shortsighted.
The Mets are still in contact with Boras, Drew’s market is close to non-existent, and the Mets have no shortstop prospects in the minors who will be able to contribute in either 2014 or 2015.
The club can say in public that it “thinks” it’s happy with Ruben Tejada, just like they said in public that they were done making major moves while they were putting the finishing touches on Bartolo Colon‘s two year contract.
Just like I’ll believe Ruben Tejada will be the shortstop next year when I see it, I’ll believe Stephen Drew won’t be a Met when he signs elsewhere. Until then, I’ll continue to believe that a union with the Mets (while far from a guarantee) is entirely plausible.