Last night it was reported that the Los Angeles Dodgers signed two-time Cy Young Award winner, Clayton Kershaw, to a seven year $215 million dollar extension. That deal, a record for a pitcher, will send ripples through the pitching market for years to come and could potential impact the Mets in a few years.
As I'm sure you know, the Mets have at least one, if not three soon to be young stud pitchers. Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler and Noah Syndergaard still have plenty to prove (especially with the latter having not reached the majors yet), but in a perfect world they Mets could have to sign these kids to extensions in three consecutive years. And yes.. I realize I am talking about no less than six years from now.
The issue remains the same though. Unless the financial landscape and front office philosophy dramatically shift between now and then, do any of us expect the Mets to issue one, never mind three, contracts north of $150 million? Also very relevant, the last time the Mets did venture into the long term market for a premiere starting pitcher and brought in Santana, it definitely didn't go as planned.
Again, we're well off from those decisions, however it remains important to keep tabs on that market and may be in the team's best interest to preemptively buy out their first few years of free agency (a la Jon Niese) in the coming years. That effort may be futile in the instance of Harvey, whose agent Scott Boras is very much against it, but its definitely an avenue to investigate if Harvey comes back from injury as expected next season.
Perhaps I'm prematurely ringing this particular alarm, or maybe I'm just a bit paranoid after seeing the team shy away from premiere talent in the past, but I believe the starting pitching market to be a legitimate hurdle to keeping the group together. For now we'll be content to watch Harvey rehab, Wheeler take the next step and Syndergaard make his arrival, but the future looms for better or worse.