It’s just as well that Francisco Rodriguez isn’t campaigning to make The Bronx his new address: The Mets are in no hurry to do business with the Yankees.
After Rodriguez suggested he would be comfortable in a setup role for a contender such as the Yankees or Rays, a Mets official yesterday all but eliminated the possibility K-Rod could be dealt across town, citing the “danger” of doing business with such a hated rival.
Rodriguez also made it known yesterday his preference is to remain with the Mets.
This may very well be true, but the Yankees and the Mets do really matchup well for K-Rod. First of all, his vesting option should scare away teams that would want to use him as their closer. If he finishes 55 games he automatically gets an extra year and $17.5 million tacked on to his deal.
The money itself will also be enough to scare most teams away. He will have to be paid the remainder of his $11.5 million deal plus a $3.5 million buyout if his option doesn’t vest. Most teams can’t afford that when it comes to relievers. Last season the Yankees outbid the Red Sox for Kerry Wood over less than $1 million.
The Yankees are going to be one of the very few teams with big dollars to spend on middle relief so the Mets may change their minds when it comes to dealing with the Yankees. At the same time, it will be very difficult because fan reaction will be especially vicious if it isn’t viewed as a fair trade for both sides. So a deal could fall apart even if both sides are willing.