A source close to Stephen Drew says there are FOUR teams that are still “in”on Drew including an owner #Mets #RedSox #WhoAreTheOther2?
— JIM BOWDEN (@JimBowdenESPNxm) February 18, 2014
The Mets remain "in" on Stephen Drew, despite publicly removing themselves from the discussion in recent weeks. It still remains the Mets and the Red Sox..however two mystery teams have entered the arena. This both renewed and refueled the Drew debate amongst Mets fans. Some feel he's the player the team needs to cap off the winter, while others feel he's just not worth the money. I for one think its a moot point, because I don't think the Mets are really "in" on anything right now.
I think there is a distinct difference between actively pursuing the situation and simply monitoring it. I believe the Mets are doing the latter. In an ideal world, I still think Sandy Alderson would like to land the free agent shortstop. He would instantly solidify the lineup to some point, providing the Mets with a lead off option, and would shore up the team's defense up the middle. That said, as Mike Puma points out, the Mets are only willing to do so on their own terms.
If the market continues to crumple for Drew, the Mets will be there with open arms to collect him on a team friendly contract. That's not my definition of being "in" on a player. The Mets are prepared to be his last resort financially, despite being his most attractive situation from an on-field perspective. Drew, at the direction of Scott Boras, has been stubborn in his demands. So too have the Mets. So while the team's brass may still have regular contact with Drew's camp, its not to aggressively make him their 2014 shortstop, its in the hopes of swooping in to steal him on the cheap.
You may love or hate that idea, but facts are facts. If that's being "in" on a free agent, things have changed more in these parts than we give them credit for. Stephen Drew may ultimately join the Mets, but it won't be because the Mets gave him not other option. It will be because the Mets were his only option remaining.