Maybe it is because it came from a tabloid, or maybe it is because the Wilpon's need the attention, but speculation has gone crazy Tuesday that the Mets are in the Robinson Cano sweepstakes.
... Now that you have stopped laughing, continue reading ...
According to the report, Jeff Wilpon and Sandy Alderson met with Cano's agent the famed rapper/mogel/now agent and Nets part-owner Jay-Z about Cano's free agency and the Mets interest in signing him.
Last time we checked, Jay-Z and Cano were looking for a deal worth $300 million, and last time we checked the Mets were not willing to break the bank on any free agents this winter. Outside of Cano, the free agent class doesn't contain a lot of sure-fire franchise players, but a lot of solid players.
Would the Mets buck their current trend of cutting as much payroll as possible and going cheap for the Yankees second baseman? I find it hard to believe.
The Mets have been a stubborn group when it comes to spending, and I find it highly unlikely that Alderson will try to strap the Mets in a mega-deal with Cano who is already over the age of 30. It's not like the Mets are a player or two away from contending -- they are an entire roster overhaul away from contending.
The Yankees apparently have offered $160-plus million to Cano, a far lesser deal than $300 million, but the Bronx Bombers are not going to be unnerved by Jay-Z talking to of all people, the Mets.
The Yankees have a good package, a good brand and a recent history of success. They are more likely to win a World Series in the next season than the Mets are in the next decade.
If anything, Jay-Z and Cano are trying to intimidate the Yankees into increasing their offer, but the Yankees will not budge from their $161 million offer.
When asked about it, Yankees president Randy Levine laughed that if the Mets want to spend $300 million on Cano, they can have him.
Even Levine isn't dumb enough to believe the Mets rumors, because he knows like all of us do, that the Mets still don't have enough financial flexibility to even afford the second tier of free agents on the market let alone the top tier free agents.
This is the second time this off-season the Mets have tried to tweak the Yankees. After the Bombers released Curtis Granderson, the Mets quickly jumped into the mix as an interested party. However, if the Mets are indeed serious about putting fans in the seats this season, they better get off the rumor mill train, because it isn't impressing anyone.
If the Mets want to impress people, they better go right ahead and sign one of these players, but that of course would be calling Fred Wilpon's bluff.