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All Quiet on the Free Agent Front

Mike SteffanosTuesday, January 6, 2009
By Mike Steffanos

Here's something that I'm sure a few of you out there can identify with -- a project that takes on a life of its own.

Back in December Lisa and I decided to upgrade our home entertainment experience. After some research and some shopping around I picked up a big screen hi def television and a Blu-Ray player. I was going to hold off for a while on a surround sound system, but decided after Christmas to set that up, too.

More research. More shopping. Then ordering from Amazon, EBay and some other on-line sources for cables and speaker wires.

The tipping point came when I decided to install the wire for 4 of the surrounds through the attic and ceiling. It isn't technically hard to do, it just made it more of a pain in the a**. I'm almost finished, but I'm also at the point where I just want it to be over. I've had enough of the process and I want to sit back and enjoy the results.

The Mets pursuit of a starting pitcher is starting to take on that aspect for me, too. It was fun for a while to speculate on who might be the best choice, but now I'm getting somewhat tired of the speculation surrounding whether or not Derek Lowe will sign here.

The Mets are apparently prepared to engage in a stare down contest with Scott Boras over Lowe. It will likely go on for another week or so, and of course there is always a chance somewhat else will step in.

My initial reaction to the Mets 3-year, $36 million offer was that they were low-balling Mr. Lowe somewhat. The more I thought about it, however, the more I realized I was basing that reaction on what last year's free agent pitchers received. With the slumping economy the market has changed.

When other teams admit that they're not prepared to raise the ante on what the Mets offered, it pretty much tells us where the market it right now. While the Yankees overpaid for pitching somewhat, particularly with the fragile Burnett, everyone else seems to be doing what I was doing while putting my system together -- patiently shopping for bargains.

While this whole process has some interest in and of itself, it's starting to wear thin for me. I'd love to see it resolve so we can start kibitzing about backup infielders and candidates for the second left-hander in the bullpen.

I still want to see the Mets sign Lowe, who I believe will give some stability to the staff and breathing room for Pelfrey and Maine. I'm comfortable with Ollie Perez as a fallback plan, but I do think in that case it becomes more important to sign a credible veteran fifth starter.

I'm not comfortable at all with the idea of Randy Wolf as somehow equivalent to Lowe and Perez if they both fall through, as I believe him to be a bottom of the rotation innings eater in this stage of his career. Signing Wolf along with Lowe or Perez would be a credible move to me. Signing Wolf instead of those two options would not.

Whatever happens, though, I'd love to see it resolve. As with my home theater, I'm somewhat tired of the process.

One thing I don't get tired of is reading my friend Metsgrrl's Blog. She's been nominated for Best Sports Blog of 2008 in the 2008 Weblog Awards. Please support her by visiting the site and casting your vote.

Also, while baseball may still be a few months off, don't forget our friends at Ticket Solutions for NY Giants playoff tickets. They have Knicks tickets and Nets tickets, too.

About Mike: I was the original writer on this web site, actually its only writer for the first 15 months of existence. Although I am grateful for the excellent contributions of my fellow writers here, I have no plans of stepping back into strictly an editorial role. I started this thing in the first place because I love to write and I love the Mets, and blogging here keeps me somewhat sane. If you haven't had enough already, more bio info can be found here.

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Comments (1)

My take is that they will sign Lowe, it just may drag like you said a week or two more. In case they don't sign Lowe I would like them to resign Ollie and get Sheets(incentive laden) or Garland for the 5th spot. Let Niese work it out in AAA for the first half and then see what you have. All in all it's about the "waiting game" and Boras is the consumate game show host when it comes to these matters. He must have learned his tatics from Monte Hall on "Lets Make A Deal". Omar, would you like this prize right here in front of you? Do you have 50 million dollars in your wallet? Or would you like to see what's behind door #1, #2, or #3? Lets Go Mets! Take your time Mike, it will be worth the fruits of your labor in the end, aaahhhhh surround sound.......

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