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Greg Prince and Jason Fry
Faith and Fear in Flushing made its debut on Feb. 16, 2005, the brainchild of two longtime friends and lifelong Met fans.

Greg Prince discovered the Mets when he was 6, during the magical summer of 1969. He is a Long Island-based writer, editor and communications consultant. Contact him here.

Jason Fry is a Brooklyn writer whose first memories include his mom leaping up and down cheering for Rusty Staub. Check out his other writing here.

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One Less Hell to Answer

The Mets have been turned down by the National League Cy Young Award winner. To invert the 5th Dimension, I should be unhappy, but all I do is shrug.

True, I was as much on tenterhooks over the marquee free agent pitching decision of the offseason as any Mets fan, even once I realized I didn’t actually know what a tenterhook was. Nevertheless, I didn’t particularly want the weirdness of Trevor Bauer on my team. Weirdness can be wonderful. His is offputting. Plus the track record seems slight compared to the heft of the contract he was demanding. The Mets nonetheless threw a weighty offer at him. He chose the Dodgers’ version. Good for him. Very good for him.

I’ve decided not to count Steve Cohen’s money or care about competitive balance penalties. Yet paying one dude who isn’t the undisputed best at his position in baseball — not the best available, but the actual no-doubt best — an unimaginable amount to maybe stretch out what he did over fewer than a dozen starts to close to three times that…in New York…while parading around his own brand of weirdness…while consciously or otherwise trying to live up to the unimaginable amount…and then, if he really succeeded, potentially walking out ASAP because a clause said he could…

It didn’t sit right. Granted, budding codgers like me use phrases like “it didn’t sit right” while grumbling they don’t print pocket schedules in copious quantities anymore, but it didn’t. Never had a great feeling about Trevor Bauer joining the Mets. Now I’m eligible for having pangs of regret should he somehow prove a bargain. I’ll take that chance.

Extend Lindor. Extend Conforto. Fill a couple of vacancies, vaccinate the roster when permissible and play ball.

18 comments to One Less Hell to Answer

  • chuck

    Which vacancies are you thinking of? This seems like much less of a splash than was expected for Steve’s money.

  • Extend Lindor. Extend Conforto. Fill a couple of vacancies, vaccinate the roster when permissible and play ball.

    Thank you, Greg! I feel the exact, same way. While it would have felt like getting an extra Christmas present to sign Bauer, I’m not heartbroken that he didn’t sign with us. My sense was that he’d leverage the situation somehow, and kudos to him. He even signed with the world champs.
    I’m more about signing the extensions now for Lindor and Conforto–also waiting to see on Stroman and Thor. It would have been nice, but bargains can ALWAYS be found elsewhere. Let’s fill those vacancies (Jake Odorizzi?), and a backup catcher and let’s get going. NEXT?

  • 9th string catcher

    Started out as a shrug but developed into a full on exhale. Guy is nuts and would wear out his welcome in about 35 minutes. Go to LA and be their cancer, not ours. Sure, I was salivating over the rotation possibilities, but it’s more about middle relief these days anyway.

  • Matt in DE

    Amen, overpriced and I think will be a busy compared to the price tag. That $40MM can be stretched way farther to fill
    some remaining holes.

  • Dave

    I’m trying to think of something clever to say about the Dodgers doing something while the Mets dodgered a bullet, but I got nothing. How a guy can turn 11 starts good starts in baseball’s weakest division of 2020, immature misogyny and some anti-Semitic tweets into a few months of “look at me, look at me, look at me,” followed by a future 1st ballot HOF’er type of contract is beyond me. Most Mets fans are very eager to spend Steve Cohen’s money, but if Steve spends his money wisely rather than like the drunken sailor big spenders are always compared to, it benefits the team. Trevor Bauer and his Trumpian need to be The Center Of Attention will make $85 million in American money the next two seasons, and the chances of him being worth every penny seems remote; 7 of his 9 big league seasons have produced mid-to-back end of the rotation results. He’s probably somewhere between that and his admittedly deserved CY, but if he doesn’t even pitch well enough to make the All-Star Game (if one happens), it wouldn’t be a surprise.

    For what can now be called Trevor Bauer-type money, the Mets can fill 3 or 4 other needs quite nicely, seems to me. They already have the guy who, based on talent, should be baseball’s highest paid pitcher.

    Oh, and again, he is of extremely questionable character, and immediately on the heels of the Porter and Callaway incidents, that would not have been a good idea. Not at all.

  • eric1973

    How could the Mets even entertain the thought of putting this kook on our team. He is a hateful weirdo, who supports weirdos, and does weird things that hurt a lot of people, including women.

    I know we all just root for the laundry, but too much of his is dirty.

  • I feel exactly the same as you on Bauer. Conforto, not so much. Offensively, he’s good. Not great, not even very good, but good. Defensively, average. His closest comps: Wally Post, Jose Cruz, Preston Wilson, Richard Hidalgo. Richard Hidalgo! Not very promising, all had their last decent seasons as a regular at 30 or 31. They can find better.

  • open the gates

    To me, the key was his harassing a female fan online, getting his followers to do the same, then taking offense at being called a bully. Yeah, no. Don’t need this guy. If the season started today, our pitching rotation would consist of deGrom, Stroman, Carrasco, Peterson and Lugo. That’ll do. We don’t need the guy in the clown suit. Not this year.

  • eric1973

    What happened to Lugo’s torn ulnar? He has it, it doesn’t matter, it does matter, it should matter, who knows?

  • open the gates

    Oops, my bad. Yeah, Lugo’s in the pen. But there’s the new kid, Lucchesi, and there are other options out there. We can do without the clown shows this year.

  • Daniel Hall

    I took it pretty well, I think. I only cried for two days.

  • open the gates

    Actually, I’m glad Mr. Cohen isn’t doing the “drunken sailor” routine. As much as we’re done with the Wilpons, we don’t want another George Steinbrenner either.

  • chuck

    I had a wisecrack about Roberto and Sandy Alomar, dyslexia, and the Mets’ new outfield acquisition, but never mind.

  • eric1973

    I went to the doctor and he told me I did NOT have dyslexia, and all I can say is:

  • Eric Grossberndt

    Everyone is swooning over his sub 2.00-ERA last year, but that was obtained by facing Milwaukee (3x), Detroit (2x), Pittsburgh (2x), the Cubs (2x), the White Sox, and Kansas City. Not exactly Murderer’s Row…

  • chuck

    …and now they went and got one of the major leaguers whose name ends in “illar.” Yeah, I got nothing.