Piecing Together the New York Mets' Puzzle

Jason LempertCorrespondent INovember 26, 2009

TORONTO - APRIL 4:  Roy Halladay #32 of the Toronto Blue Jays looks on against the Boston Red Sox during the game at Rogers Centre on April 4, 2008 in Toronto, Ontario. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)
Dave Sandford/Getty Images

The holiday season is among us, and the Major League Baseball 2010 free agent market is open for business. So it's time to do some shopping!

Today's list features the presents that Fred Wilpon, Omar Minaya, and the rest of the New York Mets front office should be trying to give to their fans to unwrap this coming season.

The biggest gift Mets fans would like to see under their tree this year is ace right hander Roy Halladay.  And while the Mets do not seem to be the top contender for the Doc's services in 2010, it could make sense for them and the Blue Jays to get a deal done, as Mike Silva of the New York Daily News writes.

The Mets certainly do not have the prospect depth that teams such as the Yankees, Red Sox and Angels might have.  But what they do have is payroll to play with, and if they would agree to take on the hefty contract of Vernon Wells, that could reduce the trading cost of Halladay, as Silva suggests.

Wells is in the midst of a seven-year, $126 million contract signed after the 2006 season.  And while the 30-year old outfielder may be losing his range as a center-fielder, he still has enough pop to be an everyday left fielder, something the Mets are certainly in need of for 2010.  He's no Matt Holliday.  He's no Jason Bay.  But a prospective outfield of Vernon Wells, Carlos Beltran and Jeff Francouer for 2010 doesn't sound too terrible.

Nor does a rotation that starts with Johan Santana and Roy Halladay.  This move would fill two holes in one swoop.  And given the Mets' downfalls the last few seasons, the team's front office would do well to make moves that could impact the team immediately, not down the road.

Not signing Bay or Holliday would allow the Mets to go fill other holes, such as a set-up man as well as a catcher.  Bengie Molina has been rumored to be CitiField-bound, and could be a cheap option for one or two years.

So with the need for another starting pitcher and a power-hitting left fielder, and with money to spend, Halladay and Wells to the Mets seems like a logical fit.  Perhaps Halladay would come to New York in a sleigh dressed as some over-sized man in a red suit, singing Jingle Wells along the way.