It appears we’ve seen the last of Francisco Rodriguez in a Mets uniform. Following surgery Tuesday to repair the right thumb he injured while pummeling his girlfriend’s father (allegedly, cough cough), the Mets put him on the disqualified list rather than the disabled list. This move means the Mets won’t have to pay the rest of his $3 million salary this season.
But more importantly, the Mets are attempting to make the rest of his contract non-guaranteed. This would allow the Mets to cut K-Rod in spring training, owing him just severance pay of 30 or 45 days and saving most of his $11.5 million salary.
Omar Minaya says the Mets want K-Rod back next season, but I don’t think it will be his call to make, if he’s even around next season. The Mets owe nearly $120 million to just ten players for 2011, assuming they pick up Jose Reyes’ $11 million option. By all accounts, the Mets don’t want to go over this year’s payroll of around $130 million, so there is not much room to rebuild this flawed team. Eliminating Rodriguez’s salary will give the Mets a little more wiggle room to improve the team. Of course, they’ll still need a closer, but perhaps they can get one cheaper.
The Mets shouldn’t count their savings so soon — the Players Association says it will file a grievance against all of this. Players usually win these kinds of grievances, but I’m not so sure this time. K-Rod reportedly admitted to team trainers that he hurt his thumb during the (alleged) fight, which means it happened during a non-baseball event. Remember, the Yankees were able to void Aaron Boone’s contract after he hurt himself playing basketball, clearing a spot for Alex Rodriguez on the team.
I predict the Mets will win this battle. Whether they decide to cut him in spring training will depend on what they are able to do in the off season. But I think K-Rod is a goner.
Oh good, that report I saw that the Mets would recall Sean Green to replace Rodriguez did not turn out to be true. Ryota Igarashi will take his place instead. Bullet dodged, for the moment, anyway.
Can anyone explain Jerry Manuel’s recent handling of Ike Davis? Manuel has benched him for one game in each of the past four series against left handers. Leaving out for the moment that Davis actually has a higher batting average (but less power) against lefties than righties, Davis is a big part of this team’s future. He’s got to learn to hit lefties, if he indeed has a problem with them. This season is over. The Mets need to look ahead to next year. Let Davis make his mistakes this year and learn from them, then start fresh and smart next year. This is just another example of Manuel’s poor decision-making. Fortunately, he won’t be around next season to make more of them.