This MLB offseason, the Milwaukee Brewers are in a similar situation as the New York Mets: resigned to the fact that their future may not include their homegrown free-agent star. While Prince Fielder and Jose Reyes may "price" themselves out of each organization's market, the Brewers differ in that they have an expensive contingency plan in place, and that's New York's free-agent shortstop.
According to Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman, Milwaukee is said "to be targeting Reyes" because Fielder, essentially, will be too expensive for the franchise to retain. The slugger is seeking a contract in excess of $180 million and eight years. The report also confirms the Florida Marlins' interest, and says that the 28-year-old shortstop is "tops" on both franchise's free-agent lists this offseason. The Detroit Tigers are also said to be mulling whether to step into the ring.
Fielder and Reyes may command similar dollar amounts, however, Heyman believes that the contract length will be shorter based on his injury history, and that may be more manageable for Milwaukee.
Reports have surfaced that the Mets are unwilling to give Reyes anything more than a five-year deal, but no dollar amounts have leaked, just yet. General manager Sandy Alderson was rebuffed by Reyes' agent when he requested the figures to which the star would agree, thus the front-office boss asked Reyes to come back to him once he surveyed the market.
The hot stove is only a tad warm ... but as it heats up, it's becoming clearer that the Mets will have to throw cold water on their chances of retaining Reyes: the more teams that engage in talks with the shortstop, the less likely he will fit into their penny-pinching budget. Competition breeds dollar signs New York will not be able to match.