3) Mets owner Steve Cohen can flex his financial might by extending free agents before the year is over
Probably the favorite financial flex of all would be for Cohen to throw some money at players like Edwin Diaz and Brandon Nimmo. In-season extensions aren’t something the Mets have traditionally done. It’s not just them who hold off on it. Many teams will try to get extensions signed in the preseason to avoid any distractions. If the two sides can move quickly on a deal, it would actually be less of a distraction and more of a midseason boost.
There doesn’t seem to be much progress at all on a long-term deal between the Mets and any of their free agents. However, they did agree to a mutual option for next season with Chris Bassitt. The difference with him is that he went to arbitration. Other players didn’t.
The Mets certainly have a number of extension candidates beyond the guys set to hit free agency at the end of this season. Pete Alonso is getting pricier with each home run. Even someone like Jeff McNeil could be worth keeping around although that feels far less likely.
A point will come in the season when extensions just won’t happen. The Mets are in the thick of a playoff race and by August, the focus will be on the rest of the season and not the future. With no real need to extend anyone, it’s unlikely to happen. Based on how much money Cohen makes, there really isn’t any urgency at all. The whole point of extending a player early is because you’re not sure if you can afford them if their value increases. What can’t Cohen afford?