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Niese, Mets Agree To Extension

Posted By Howard Megdal On April 4, 2012 @ 4:34 pm In Uncategorized | Comments Disabled

As has been rumored, the Mets have come to an agreement on a five-year, $25.5 million contract extension with Jon Niese, according to ESPN’s Adam Rubin [1]. The team will hold team options in years six and seven that could push the deal to $46.5 million.
Essentially, this gives the Mets some cost certainty with Niese. I happen to be a big believer that Niese’s struggles to match his ERA to a far better xFIP will balance out as he moves forward, and I see this contract as a strong bargain for the Mets.
Remember: the Mets had guys like Niese, who had poor ERAs despite strong peripherals. Dan Wheeler and Heath Bell were a couple, just off the top of my head. Previous GMs would respond by letting them go for peanuts. This administration signs them for potential value on the other end.
Much better.
The risk, as always, is Niese gets hurt, and the Mets are on the hook for an average of $5 million per season for the next five years. The hope, of course, is that ownership, whoever it is over the next five years, isn’t hamstrung by such small amounts. (For reference, an extra $5 million this offseason would have allowed the Mets to bring in middle relievers AND a backup catcher, rather than choosing just one.)
Is the timing of this PR-driven? Certainly seems like it [2]. But the baseball science behind the move is sound, so I don’t really care when they choose to announce it.

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[1] ESPN’s Adam Rubin: http://t.co/LCwX2fZY

[2] Certainly seems like it: https://twitter.com/#!/SurfingTheMets/status/186562214537338880

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