Jose Reyes has been the centerpiece of discussion of most of the New York Mets trade rumors. With his contract expiring at the end of the year, a 27-year-old shortstop as dynamic as Reyes (but with an injury history) is thought to be out of the Mets' price range because of what's gone on with the Wilpons' finances.
Many Mets fans are clamoring for the team to keep Reyes, a homegrown product at a very thin position, and according to Adam Rubin of ESPN NY, there is a way for the Mets to keep him -- and that's trading David Wright, possibly next offseason.
Rubin cites a source familiar with the Mets' thinking, and says that the team can ill afford to hold onto Reyes (he ballparks his new contract at $17 million a year) and Wright ($15 million in 2012), along with Johan Santana ($24 million) and Jason Bay ($16 million). Seventy-two million dollars would conceivably be going to only four players, which would comprise about 60 percent of the payroll if it falls to the rumored $120 million.
What makes Wright more tradable than Reyes is that he still has two years left in his contract in addition to this year, with a $16 million team option in 2013. He's also in his prime and one of the top players at his position.
"If they wanted to move Wright, there's no better time to move him than now, because there still will be teams out there thinking, 'Well, David Wright was sabotaged by the stadium. He's still a good player. He'd be a good fit where he doesn't have to be the guy,' which he's been here for so long. So they can get some return on Wright. Plus the fact that he has two years left on his deal, so you're not talking about long-term financial damage for any team that does pick him up."
Do I see the Mets trading Wright? I don't think they will, but I believe that Sandy Alderson will explore every possible avenue to figure out how to bring back the right pieces to make this team competitive and make these players fit into the new payroll constraints the Wilpons have laid out, which is currently at about $142 million.
It's worth noting that Andy Martino of the NY Daily News spoke to a source that said "no serious internal discussions about [trading Wright] have occurred."
I expect we'll be hearing a lot more Mets chatter like this in the near future.