For a couple of weeks now, it has been reported that the New York Mets and the Toronto Blue Jays are the two finalists in the pursuit of free agent center fielder George Springer. After all, both teams have money to spend and the specific need of a big two-way contributor in the outfield’s most important position.
However, the New York Mets, after acquiring Francisco Lindor, don’t have a pressing need to add Springer, like Toronto still does. The Mets, therefore, are also looking at glove-first options such as Jackie Bradley jr. and Albert Almora.
In any case, both teams remain in the hunt, as the Mets haven’t entirely dismissed the possibility of adding Springer. In fact, both teams made offers north of $100 million, according to the latest reports.
Will Springer choose the Mets?
According to MLB.com’s Jon Morosi, Springer could come to a decision on where he wants to play next season this week. In the last few days, a flurry of free agents have signed after months of a slow market: reliever Liam Hendriks went to Chicago, the Yankees secured both DJ LeMahieu and pitcher Corey Kluber, and the Phillies inked bullpen star Archie Bradley.
The Mets have been extremely active ever since new owner Steve Cohen took over, but are not done yet. SNY believes that while several free agents remain unsigned, Springer may very well be the next big fish to put his signature into paper.
Springer, who is 31 years old, is reportedly looking for something in the neighborhood of $175 million. That number seems unlikely in the current market, but the final contract could be very well worth at least $150 million.
Additionally, he is said to prefer playing closer to his home in Connecticut, which would give the Mets the edge.
In the shortened 2020 season, Springer slashed .265/.359/.540 with a 146 wRC+ and a 1.9 fWAR. He hit 14 home runs and played stellar defense in center field for the Houston Astros.