Sandy Alderson has been scouring the free-agent market for a reliever with experience as a closer for most of the winter. With about two weeks before pitchers and catchers are supposed to report to Port St. Lucie, Fla., he’s still without that part of his wish list.
The Mets would like insurance for Bobby Parnell. Adam Rubin of ESPN New York reported the right-hander is already working out at the Mets’ spring training complex. However, they’d like to have a backup plan in case he suffers a setback from his September neck surgery.
New York’s pursuit of Grant Balfour fell short, despite making an offer similar to the two-year, $12 million deal he signed with the Tampa Bay Rays. Anthony Rieber of Newsday points out a few reasons why Balfour decided against signing with the Mets:
The Mets made a comparable offer to Balfour, according to a baseball source, but believe he ultimately decided he prefers to live in Florida. There is no state income tax in Florida. The Rays also are a contender; the Mets hope to be one.
In addition to that, Balfour is guaranteed to be the closer for Tampa Bay, whereas that wasn’t the case in New York.
With the right-hander off the market, there are still a handful of free-agent options Alderson can consider pursuing. Here are five relievers that New York could be having internal discussions about.