Once Again, Would Mets Sign Pujols?

A little over a month ago I wondered aloud if the Mets would consider signing Albert Pujols — if indeed he became a free agent at the end of the 2011 season.

Back then, the idea that Pujols would become a free agent seemed ridiculous — surely, the Cardinals would find a way to lock him up before Opening Day.

Now, it’s becoming more and more realistic to believe that Sir Albert will indeed play out the final year on his contract and hit the market next winter.

Unfortunately, it’s also become apparent that the Wilpons could be broke by then — and may not even own the team when winter arrives.

Assuming nothing changes in ownership between now and then, it’s a foregone conclusion that the Mets will be in no position to get in on the bidding should Pujols be a free agent. However, what if a new owner buys into the team before then — be it as a minority stakeholder injecting the franchise with a significant cash contribution, or a big-time investor who purchases the team outright? Would new ownership seek to make a big splash by signing Pujols, perhaps as a way to send a message to their fans and MLB that “the Mets are back and mean business” ?

Post your thoughts in the comments.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. Mike February 15, 2011 at 2:20 pm
    Since we love to obsess over the idea of an “Alderson guy” I think it is pretty safe to say Pujols defines that. Can anyone argue against that? If He had the money, he would do everything he could to get him. Sticking point more than the money is the years. We also know Alderson wants flexibility. If he signed Pujols for what he wants (i.e. 30 per for 10) he would be making an exception and proving that he does not have one way of doing business.

    At this point I don’t think I would want Pujols for the money he is asking for, but 8 years might actually be worth it.

    • Rich Chalfin February 15, 2011 at 2:33 pm
      You can rest assured that if Mark Cuban is involved in any way shape or form with the future ownership of the Mets taht they will be a major player in the Pujol sweepstakes.
    • Kevin February 15, 2011 at 8:36 pm
      Can’t argue with that. Alderson loves chemically-enhanced sluggers.
  2. Timo February 15, 2011 at 5:01 pm
    Getting Pujols would be worth it, even at 300 for 10. We could trade Ike to TB for pitching. Ike is not playing 1st anymore if the mets get albert. The only way they would keep Ike is as Joe says “make him your loogy out of the pen.” However, this is all a pipe dream. However, that is all we got as Mets fans these days.
  3. Rob February 15, 2011 at 5:11 pm
    I don’t know, Joe. Seems to me that every team (other than the megabuck teams like the Yanks and the Bosox) that signs that huge quarter to third of a billion dollar contract generally gets burned down the line with payroll inflexibility. If you take up a quarter of your payroll paying just one player, you have less to pay the supporting players. That spells doom as the contract progresses. I just can’t see how any team, other than the Yanks and the Bosox, can afford to sign Pujols to a megacontract. And of course, the Yanks and Bosox have their own players tending the cooler corner, so who else is going to sign him?

    So would I sign him? Probably not at the numbers he’s asking for. Will the Mets sign him? Much as I would love to predict yes, I’ve got to say it won’t happen. First, even if they get an equity investor, the Wilpons are still in danger of losing their personal shirts, leaving the whole system relatively unstable. Think about it…if you sell a quarter of the team and the remaining 75% falls apart, you have the majority in chaos…you can’t ask the team to commit under those circumstances. Second, the Mets are on the hook for almost $50 million themselves…that’s a problem for the Mets, not just the Wilpons. So that leads to further inflexibility. So I’d say there is very little chance of it happening.

    That said, the prospect of Pujols putting fannies in the seats is tremendous and I have no idea how that would offset the cost. But you have to ask yourself, would Pujols result in an immediate winning team? I don’t know and that’s a lot of uncertainty for $300 million.

  4. Mic February 15, 2011 at 6:42 pm
    10YR contract. …
  5. mrtasan February 15, 2011 at 9:35 pm
    the minute he signs a mets contract is the minute his production is going to start declining
  6. gary s. February 16, 2011 at 12:08 am
    george foster, bobby bonilla,vince coleman, jason bay..no thanks, based on our f.a. track record, i’ll pass..
  7. Henry February 16, 2011 at 1:18 am
    Joe, you make it sound as if the Wilpons could sell the team in a week or two …. do you know how long it would take to actually sell the franchise? With the way MLB scrutinizes these sales, it could take years …..
    • Joe Janish February 16, 2011 at 9:58 am
      Bud Selig can make things happen in MLB as quickly as he wants, and he’s been in charge of the Mets since last October. Remember how quickly and stealthily he moved the Brewers to the NL, and traded the owners of the Red Sox, Expos, and Marlins?

      If a strong buyer becomes apparent — i.e. Donald Trump, Mark Cuban — there is no doubt in my mind that Selig will make sure a sale is executed quickly and cleanly, and in plenty of time for the new owner to peruse free agents next winter. The quicker MLB can put the New York Mess in the rearview mirror, the better.

  8. Walnutz15 February 16, 2011 at 4:03 pm
    The Mets will not get Albert Pujols.

    – PK

  9. gary s. February 16, 2011 at 6:49 pm
    Joe, i hope you are right about Selig getting the Mets sold quickly if a strong buyer appears.If i have to hear that fool jeff wilpon lie one more time about the team’s finances, my head will explode.