FLASH: Mets Sign Michael Cuddyer


The Mets have announced that they have signed OF/1B Michael Cuddyer to a 2 year contract for an undisclosed amount of money. The signing is a massive surprise as the Mets will now have to forfeit their 15th overall pick in next year's draft.

With the signing, 2015's payroll now stands at $102,880,000 which would indicate that the Mets will need to make a corresponding move to free up some payroll. That is, unless the Wilpons are truly opening up the purse.

UPDATE: Jeff Passan is reporting the the contract value is less than $25m total.

UPDATE: Per Jon Heyman, the contract is a 2 year deal worth $21m total ($10.5 per year Average Annual Value). He will earn $8.5m in 2015 and $12.5 in 2016.


Lew Rhodes said...

I love this signing - sucks to give up the pick, but this is perfect combination of win-now without a long term contract problem.

Cuddyer will leave just as Nimmo and Conforto are ready to be everyday OFers.

I only hope that losing the first round pick means that Sandy will go all in to sign that young Cuban kid with the rest of our international signing money.

Christopher Soto said...

I must say.....I am absolutely STUNNED.

I need to see the dollar value first before I decide if it was a good deal or not.

Charles said...

Hopefully they take that slot money and use it towards international signings. Meaning, the money they were going to spend on that 15th pick, instead they use towards a couple great international signings.

Also, I think this seals the deal and we'll be seeing Murphy traded at some point. I can't see how they could afford to keep their payroll under 100 million with this signing. It already was over 90.

Charles said...

If say 2/20 at least. MC could've gotten 1/15.3 by just taking the QF.

Christopher Soto said...


Slot money from the draft cannot be used for international signings.

In addition to trading the 15th pick the Mets also forfeit the $4M+ that is tied to it.

If its less than 2 yr/20m then I'm happy.

Mack Ade said...

The 2015 Draft is not a very talented draft so, if you are going to give up a first rounder, this would be a good year to do it.

Christopher Soto said...

Reports say that the Mets are continuing discussions with the Rockies about Troy Tulowitzski.

Who is this team and what have they done with my Mets??

Bill Metsiac said...

I love it.it's the first sign that SA is i to "time to win" mode instead of "wait for the future".
It also makes me feel that more moves are coming.

I can't wait to hear from Reese "the Mets will make no deals" Kaplan to react.

Lew Rhodes said...

I totally trust Mack's assessment of the draft - if he says this is the year to give up a pick - I believe it!

RE the international signing money - I know that it isn't the same pool as draft slot money, but it is money out of the same owner's pocket - so knowing that the team will spend a couple mill less in the draft could allow the owners to authorize all in on the international budget

The contract has to at least be 2/20 with incentives that can push it up to 25-30 million. I just hope there is no vesting or player option.

Lew Rhodes said...

Chris - This is the argument I made two weeks ago about Sandy - he was building a team and a system that was near ready to compete and had a few definable needs (notably LF and SS).

This way he now has the assets to shore up the needs.

When one FA signing can legitimately put you in the hunt for the WC spot, you make it - unlike the past 3 years when a big signing wouldn't get us close.

Christopher Soto said...

Oh....I whole heartedly believed that Alderson was going to make a FA splash this year....

but after Cuddyer received a QO....I didn't think it would be him.

I was slowly thinking that maybe Markakis would be the guy or maybe a Cespedes trade.

Christopher Soto said...

2 yrs $21m is the contract

Lew Rhodes said...

2/$21 is a great contract - if he can give us a .800 OPS for two years , what an upgrade.

Chris - I like Markakis, but his lefty bat wouldn't fit as well for us.

Cuddyer just made too much sense both in the OF need and to spell Duda against tough lefties at 1b.

Mack Ade said...

There's a good chance this whole under $100mil payroll thing is a thing of the past.

To accomplish that now, you have to trade Murphy and DFA Tejada...

One more thing...

I did check with 'a friend' and, supposedly, the Mets aren't done. I was also told the Tulo discussions are 'ongoing'.


Kevin S said...

I really believe Colorado either screwed the Mets out of a draft pick or they are working together on another deal for Tulo.

Maybe the Mets trade them Syndergaard, Mejia, Flores and what is essentially a draft pick while taking on most of that contract.

Hmmmm. Things just got interesting.

John Zozo said...

Wow, that's pretty good. They might as well get another free agent and lose the second round pick as well. Maybe they can get Hanley to play short and only lose a draft pick, and keep all our young guys for another year. Yes he is injury prone but if they are talking about Tulo, he is as well. Trust me I loved Tulo but those hip injuries are hard to comeback from. Maybe offer Hanley a 5yr 90 million contract and we are almost finished for the offseason.

Mack Ade said...

Kevin -

I have no problem trading Syndergaard for a vet major leaguer that has already proven his value.

Also, the Mets have enough rotation pitching to 'survive' without Thor...

But you put Tulo and Cuddyer on the 2015 Mets, with their current rotation, and you will instantly fight the Nats for the division

Mack Ade said...

and remember...

all of this puts 10-15,000 more people per home game in the stands times the 200-400 they will spend on a ticket.hot dogs/beer/etc.

Kevin S said...

They have the pieces to make this happen. The Cuddyer QO and signing really has me thinking this has more legs than we thought was possible.

They could sign Cuddyer and trade for Tulo and still be under $125M.

Kevin S said...

Exactly Mack,

Give the fans a reason to come to the games and be excited about the Mets. A Tulo trade instantly does that.

Mack Ade said...

the Mets could also get a draft pick back in a Tulo deal

Robb said...

I cant figure out how to feel about this. on one hand, i love 2/21 and the other the just gave up the draft pick. Im going to just assume that we drafted a bust with that pick whomever it ends up being. weird.

Adam Smith said...

I love the Cuddyer signing, sort of the perfect high-ceiling, buy-low fit for this team, with his RH bat and ability to play 1B. If he's on the field and producing for 120 games per year, he's still probably worth it.

But I can't believe that they would pair him up with another - far more expensive - injury risk in Tulo. Even if Colorado took on a significant portion, it's a contract that could hamstring this team for years, not to mention put a huge dent in the farm system.

Anonymous said...

I like this signing and understand the risks surrounding it, but as best I can tell, there were (and are) risks with everything out there, including Tulo. Sandy would be a master if he can ink the Cuban SS. All of the constrained payroll over the past few years make this possible. I'm with Mack and believe the payroll can and will jump, as I believe Sandy was being prudent in anticipation of moves when the young talent emerged. If Sandy were to be a genius, he would sign Mannero (?) and trade for Alexi Ramirez without giving up a crown jewel. They can contend next year, shed the Vets to clear for even more gets, add more talent to a farm that is going to be a beast for the next 4 years, even after Thor and Matz graduate and have the Fab Five. No to Tulo, love the skills, but he (and Cargo) have serious chronic injuries. Sandy deserves credit for sticking to his plan (for better or worse) in opposition to the Mobs Of New York. Takes eggs to do in this town and I believe he will be vindicated over the next five years. I like it and hope he doesn't burp with Tulo

Anon Joe F

Michi L. said...

Waiting finally over. Doesnt it feel great!?

Charles said...

I know that Chris. What I'm saying is, take that money they would've spent of the draft and go after players that are ranked in the top 5 of the international crop. They never do that or haven't in a couple years. Try to make up for that first round lose by getting a really good player at their only other available avenue to do so.

Charles said...

Tulo has a bad hip. Is he really a guy you want to give up 4 great prospects for and pay 120 million? NO WAY!

Mack Ade said...

Robb -

the 15th pick isn't great in a great draft year... I'll have more on this tomorrow

TP said...

@ Chris Soto -
What do you think of the deal at @21 mil? I like it. I was one that would have been fine if they passed and kept the pick, but looking at the overall marketplace and the cost in prospects to acquire a RH OF bat, $21 mil and that 15th pick is likely the lowest cost. And, while Cuddyer has his risks, he most certainly is a professional RH bat with some pop. IT also put him in great position for upgrading SS from a less desperate position.

Richard Jones said...

Question about how slot money works. Do the Mets actually lose $4,000,000 or do they lose $4,000,000 from their 2015 draft budget?
In other words do they have to write a $4,000,000 check to mlb or does mlb say you have to spend $4,000,000 less than you could have if you didn't sign Cuddyer.
I do think this will turn into another Jason Bay or Chris Young type of move. Citi and Coors are much different places to play. I hope I'm wrong.

Mack Ade said...

TP -

Excuse me if I but in on your question to Chris.

Why do people keep worrying about how much the Wilpon family pays for a free agent?

Did any of the Cuddyer money come out of yours or my checking account?

I don't care what their payroll is nor do I care what they operate at... they are worth $2,000,000,000 on the open market no matter how much they lose in a yearly operating program.

I want the best team the Mets can put on the field and the Mets are not going to turn this around until they field a credible team at every position.

$21mil over two years for the kind of outfield Cuddyer represents is a steal in today's market... and even if it isn't a steal, no one is stealing anything from you and me

jd said...

The draft pick hurt me for about a minute and a half. Then I thought... would I trade Cecchini for two years of Cuddyer. Without blinking, yes. D. Smith? Probably. Probably not Nimmo but... that's the point. We just solidified two positions for one draft pick. No on Tulo for me. Just... no. To be as clear as possible about the draft money: they lose the pick and therefore the amount of money in their pool i.e. the money they can spend on their total draft picks without penalty drops by that amount. Seeing as they signed three of their last four first round picks at slot, that means exactly nothing. Not having to spend that money could be seen as a savings. So, with that "savings" how about a signing bonus for a manager that won't cost us 10-15 games a year and / or overslot signings in either/or both the draft and international market.

Ernest Dove said...

Hey im late to the party..........
Happy with cuddyer signing.
Could care less about a draft pick.
Wondering how signing effects den dekker, puello, kirk, Wilmer and murph. ..........hmmmmmmm.

Mack Ade said...

Richard -

as I understand it, the Mets lose the 1st pick AND forfeit the slot money allocated for that pick

TP said...

I'm with you in that I don't care if they spend $50 mil or $200 mil on the payroll so long as they ut a quality team with glaring deficits on the field.

I was just asking Chris said anything below 2/$20 mil and he's happy.

Me, I'm surprised they spent the pick but I'm happy. Spending that 15th pick on the RH OF may well allow them to retain a prospect or two that is close to big league ready, so I like it.

Thomas Brennan said...

I am all excited about Cuddyer. My brother Steve and nephew Michael are too. I agree, the draft choice at #15 would be nice, but it takes a long time to pay off and there is plenty in the system right now. Unless the #15 pick turned out to be a Mike Trout, which is very rare, I can definitely pass on that for Cuddyer.

My take if he is healthy is he starts 100 games a year; Grandy and Lagares 145 each; and Dekker the other 90. I like that very much.

Thomas Brennan said...

I was just trolling the Mets' winter leagues stats and saw that catcher Francisco Pena is listed under the Mets. Did we get him back?

He had a REAL interesting year in 2014 in AAA for Omaha, which is not like hitting in Vegas: just .240, but TWENTY SEVEN HOMERS in just 342 at bats.

SO his AAA #s in 2013 and 2014 are 560 at bats, 28 doubles and 36 homers. That is eye-catching power. Perhaps just another Recker, but wow.

Christopher Soto said...

Good Morning All,

Sorry for not chiming in last night as Monday and Tuesday nights are my competitive billiards nights.

Cuddyer on a 2 yr/$21m contract is an excellent deal in my opinion. Amongst sabermeticians, each +1.0 of WAR is viewed as worth $5m. So for Cuddyer to make this contract worth while....all he has to do is put up +4.0 WAR across 2 seasons.

A healthy Cuddyer, playing 130 games, has averaged a +2.5 WAR per season. Even the injury riddled Cuddyer from last year was able to crank out a +1.5 WAR.

I forsee Cuddyer very easily meeting that +4.0 WAR threshold across his 2 seasons.

The only knock against Cuddyer is his defense....particularly his range. Sabermetrics have been severely unkind to him in terms of range during his time in Colorado.

Coors Field has more room to cover in RF than Citi Field. Plus the Rockies have never had the pleasure of having a Gold Glove super rangy CF during Cuddyer's time. They also never had the pleasure of having pitchers who induce weak contact during his time.

The combination of these things lead me to believe that Cuddyer will be just fine defensively in RF and should post a stat line somewhere close to his career 130 Game norms:

.280 AVG
.347 OBP
.466 SLG
17 HR
70 RBI

Hopefully having his buddy on the team will also re-energize Wright to return to the numbers he was producing during his MVP caliber 2012 and 2013 seasons.

IBfromWhitePlains said...

I like this move a lot. It’s a proven, complimentary bat in the middle of the lineup. A tough out. A team doesn’t need to sign mega-stars to be rock solid. Alderson seems to be seizing the moment – amazing after what we’ve seen for the last 5 years. Other players and agents in the league must be taking notice too. And maybe moving in that right field fence might not just be for the current Mets either….I’m thrilled!


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