By Mike Steffanos
For those of you that live for trade rumors, Mark Healey at Gotham Baseball is firing up The Rumor Mill a little early this year. Mark tries to discern which players both New York teams may be targeting. A couple of interesting names he has come up with are San Francisco's Ray Durham and a former A's southpaw not named Barry. That's right, Mark Mulder -- who didn't get along with Rick Peterson in Oakland -- could be a target of the Mets. I guess that's not that far-fetched. Perhaps he would be willing to sign one of those short-term deals to prove he has rebounded from his injury, and bridge the gap while the Mets are waiting for some of their promising young arms to come along.
The idea of Durham over Julio Lugo is intriguing. Durham would be a better second baseman than Lugo certainly, and is a damned good hitter. Of course, Healey is correct when he points out Durham will garner a lot of interest and won't come cheap.
Mark also offers some common sense on a possible Milledge deal:
I have spoken to enough people in the organization over the last month to determine that Milledge's being off the postseason roster was a motivational and instructional one and that there are no plans to deal Milledge at this time.
Frankly, if they were looking to deal him, it'd be pretty foolish to have done so.
I think it's far more likely that, as the excellent Adam Rubin wrote in Sunday's NY Daily News, that Moises Alou - who has tied to both Minaya and Pedro Martinez -- could be signed to help tutor the young Milledge.
I'm with Mark on this one. If the Mets' plan was definitely to deal young Lastings this year, it was strange that they chose to make moves that would lessen his value. Sorry, I just don't think Omar is that stupid.
Mark doesn't feel that Tom Glavine will re-sign with the Mets, but believes that Glavine will reunite with John Smoltz and Greg Maddux in Atlanta next year for his farewell season. It seems unlikely to me that Atlanta would fork over that kind of change to get both guys back, but stranger things have happened, I guess. As I've said before, I'd like Glavine back, but it won't kill me if he leaves. I believe the Mets will be okay without Glavine next year if he decides to finish his career at home. The important thing would be for Glavine to let the Mets know his decision as soon as possible so that they can make their own plans accordingly.
For what it's worth, David O'Brien from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution believes Glavine will finish his career in New York next season. You need to take all of these rumors with a grain of salt.