January 24, 2014

Mets Make Play for Closer - Fall Short on Balfour

Several sources are reporting that the Mets offered Grant Balfour a two year deal exceeding $12M, but the former A's closer opted to sign with the Tampa Bay Rays instead.  While losing out on one of the remaining quality free agent arms for the bullpen is disappointing, it does signal a willingness on the Mets part to spend more than $90M in payroll for the 2014 season.  That apparent commitment, and the fact that the market for Steven Drew appears to be falling in the range of the team's price range, could mean that Sandy Alderson isn't finished improving the 2014 squad. All teams have question marks as the season approaches.  Answering those questions by exhibiting an ability to devote resources to the product on the field is the best way to lure wary fans back to the ballpark.


Added by Rob -
Its worth nothing that money may not have been the deciding factor in this case.  Balfour is a closer, and a quality one.  The Mets have Bobby Parnell, and while an argument could be made for either one over the other, it likely the team's front office viewed Balfour as the "veteran" insurance policy with regards to Parnell's health.  I can't agree more with Denis' assertion that the willingness to spend upwards of $12 million dollars should illustrate to fans that the Mets still have the wallet to add this offseason.  That's refreshing news, despite losing out in this particular instance.

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