Ramble On Sports

Where sports, pop culture and everything else collide.

Jason Bay signing – Opinion 1

Posted by bdowd625 on December 30, 2009

We all knew this day would come sooner or later. After a little more than a year as a productive member of the Boston Red Sox, left fielder Jason Bay is packing up his things and heading to the New York Mets, the recipient of a four-year, $66 million contract. Sure, I’m sad to see him go – he had some clutch hits for the Sox and by all accounts was an excellent teammate during his time in Beantown – but it’s not like we’re saying goodbye to a first ballot Hall of Famer here. He had good power numbers, but he also seemed to whiff whenever pitchers threw him anything other than a 95-mph fastball right down the heart of the plate.

Part of me feels bad for Bay because of the way he and his agent mishandled his contract situation. This was his one chance to cash in on the open market, and the Sox’ alleged offer of four years at $60 million just wasn’t sweet enough for him. It’s obviously his right to turn down that offer and listen to other, more lucrative options. But Bay and his agent seemed to miscalculate his worth, thinking that other teams would be more than willing to give him a guaranteed fifth year at somewhere between $16-18 million per season. The Mets did include a fifth year valued at $14 million, but Bay needs to hit a handful of statistical marks for that option to vest.

I think that if Bay had known he was only going to get $6 million more from the Mets, he would have been happy to return to Boston – a place he has a chance to win a title every season. Hindsight is 20-20, however, and Bay is bound for Queens. I wish him well in his new home, I just don’t know if he will be as productive as he has been in previous seasons. Citi Field is notorious for being a pitcher’s park  and Bay – a dead pull hitter – will need to start crushing the ball to the gaps as well if he hopes to keep his home run totals up with the Mets.

I guess this was a good move for New York, barring that Bay stays healthy for the duration of his contract. The Mets have been ravaged by injuries lately and Bay should provide a steady bat right in the middle of that lineup. The Red Sox, on the other hand, are once again left scrounging around for a power bat, someone to at least make the opposing pitcher sweat a little bit when he struts to the plate.

It’s only late Decemeber, though, and there’s plenty of time left for things to happen before spring training. But with Bay – one of this year’s top free agents – now off the market, the hot stove just cooled considerably.

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One Response to “Jason Bay signing – Opinion 1”

  1. bigblue123 said

    Its no secret that the Mets have been awful – 3 straight years out of the playoffs. Historic collapses in Septmeber, injuries, manager firings midseason, huge payroll have been high/lowlights. 70-92 in 2009.
    Bay is a gamer, he is solid — that gives Mets potentially an outfield of Francoeur, Beltran and Bay. Healthy this group could produce 280ba, 22-25hrs and 100rbis apiece even at Citi. My fear is Bay’s shoulder barks, Beltran’s knee continues to bother and Francoeur’s underperformance in Atlanta resurfaces.
    Baseball- lets get it back.

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