Mets reach deal to acquire Santana

Mets reach deal to acquire Santana

Mets reach deal to acquire Santana

All that is left for the Mets is to sign Johan Santana long-term.

After months of deliberation, the Twins agreed to ship the two-time Cy Young Award winner to the Mets for outfielder Carlos Gomez, and pitchers Phil Humber, Deolis Guerra and Kevin Mulvey, two people familiar with the deal said, speaking on condition of anonymity because no announcement had been made.

"If it's true, obviously, you're getting arguably the best pitcher in the game," Mets third baseman David Wright said.

The 72-hour window for the Mets to sign Santana to a contract extension is now open, major-league sources say. The trade will become official only after Santana passes a physical and an agreement is reached.

Santana, who turns 29 in March and is eligible for free agency at the end of the season, is expected to require a deal of at least six years and $20 million annually as the price for waiving his no-trade clause.

The Mets have indicated that they do not want to sign Santana for more than five years. But as they prepare to open a new ballpark next season, it is difficult to imagine that they would allow this opportunity to pass.

Santana is 93-44 with a 3.22 ERA in eight major league seasons, winning the AL Cy Young Award in 2004 and 2006. He has been less successful in the playoffs, going 1-3 with a 3.97 ERA.

"For our younger pitchers to develop under a guy like Pedro, a guy like Johan, you can't ask for any better situation," Wright said. "He's going to go out there and he's going to give you seven or eight innings every five days and he's going to get you a win. That's just what it comes down to. I've gotten a chance to get to know him a little bit the past couple years. He seems like a great clubhouse guy. He's going to fit in perfectly with the chemistry that we have."

The trade would mark a coup for the Mets, who appeared out of the running for Santana earlier this off-season, when the Red Sox and Yankees were more aggressive suitors.

Santana would give the Mets an ace not just for next season but beyond — an important consideration with right-handers Pedro Martinez, Orlando Hernandez and Oliver Perez free agents at the end of the season.

The Twins, meanwhile, would receive a less polished group than they might have acquired from the Red Sox, who offered separate packages headed by left-hander Jon Lester and outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury.

However, the Twins would not expect to contend after losing Santana on top of free-agent outfielder Torii Hunter and right-hander Carlos Silva. The team's history of succeeding with prospect trades involving Frank Viola, Chuck Knoblauch and A.J. Pierzynski apparently emboldened club officials to accept the Mets' offer.

The quality of the Mets' package, though, is certain to be debated. Gomez, a speedy, athletic wonder, needs to prove that he can hit major-league pitching. Mulvey and Humber might only become back-of-the-rotation starters. Guerra has yet to pitch above Class A.

With Santana gone, there is a big opening in the Twins' rotation. Francisco Liriano is on track to return after missing last season following elbow surgery, but Silva signed with Seattle as a free agent, leaving youngsters Scott Baker, Boof Bonser and Kevin Slowey as the starters with the most experience.

Humber, a 25-year-old right-hander, has made one start and four relief appearances for the Mets during the past two years, and went 11-9 with a 4.27 ERA last season for Triple-A New Orleans. The 22-year-old Gomez batted .232 in 125 at-bats with New York last year and .275 with 19 steals in the minors.

mvbski
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Re: Mets reach deal to acquire Santana

Wow man I can't believe Minny let him go

Michael Cash
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Re: Mets reach deal to acquire Santana

I'm just surprised it was the Mets who eventually snagged him. I figured it would be the Yankees who eventually pulled the trigger...

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Re: Mets reach deal to acquire Santana

Gotta frost steinbrenners ass to see him across town

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