Balance of power hinges on Santana (cont.)
Posted: Thursday November 29, 2007 11:39AM; Updated: Thursday November 29, 2007 6:13PM
Mets have better shot at Haren, Blanton
The Mets have a better chance to land A's right-hander Dan Haren because the A's appear to like the Mets' young players better than the Twins do. Vaunted A's GM Billy Beane is one who's still known to covet Lastings Milledge and Mike Pelfrey despite their initial big-league struggles.
In trade talks between the Mets and A's, Oakland named the young Mets players that interest them in a potential Haren deal, and it's believed to be all the A-teamers: pitchers Pelfrey and Kevin Mulvey and outfielders Milledge, Carlos Gomez and Fernando Martinez.
Two key points: 1) This is a long way from happening, and 2) The Mets especially do not want to trade Mulvey, their one pitching prospect whose stock soared in 2007.
Haren's value is perhaps higher than Santana's, not only because Haren went 15-9 with a 3.07 ERA but because he also has an extremely reasonable contract that will pay him $16.25 million through 2010 assuming the '10 option for $6.75 million is eventually exercised.
The Mets still probably wouldn't want to surrender even three of those young players for Haren, and that could lead Oakland to try to substitute right-hander Joe Blanton in a deal.
Are Marlins "just fishing'?
One competing executive said he believes the Marlins are "just fishing'' in trade talks for Cabrera, and what Angels owner Arte Moreno told the L.A. Times supports that theory. Moreno told the paper that he felt he was close to getting Cabrera twice before the Marlins altered the asking price. "They came back and asked for more. They're doing it to everybody,'' Moreno told the Times.
Our unnamed executive said he believes there's no pressure on Marlins executives to do a thing. "They can do anything they want,'' that exec said. "They're all signed through 2015.'' He refers to the Marlins executives' new, extremely long-term extensions.
As for the players, there are no long extensions in their Florida future.
Around the Majors
The Mets are already shopping new catcher Johnny Estrada. But word is that if they can't succeed in moving him, they still hope to land a catcher, enabling them to non-tender Estrada and save the $4 million-plus he'd get in arbitration. Whatever they do with Estrada, it was the right move for the Mets to send Guillermo Mota to Milwaukee in the deal since his backloaded contract calls for $3.2 million in '08.
The Mets have talked to the Giants about Bengie Molina, who's also being shopped. But they seem lukewarm on Molina, which is only slightly warmer than they are on Estrada.
Meanwhile, Yorvit Torrealba appears likely to sign soon, probably back with the Rockies, though not for the $14.4 million the Mets originally agreed to give him before backing out of the deal.
The Angels are planning to employ Erick Aybar at shortstop.
The White Sox want to toughen up their clubhouse, and bringing back Aaron Rowand would be a start. But I still have a hard time seeing the White Sox paying what it would take to land Rowand, whom they never saw as a star.
Hey, it's the new D-Rays! Their six-player deal to net Garza from Minnesota for the talented-but-immature Young is the type of trade they've always needed to make.
Vin Scully, a marvel and the best in the business for 58 years running, turns 80 today.
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