Michael Bourn is still looking for work and apparently a bunch of Mets fans have been asking Andy McCullough of the Newark Star Ledger if the 30-year-old outfielder would be a fit in New York.
The answer is no, because while the Mets have an obvious opening in center field general manager Sandy Alderson made it very clear to McCullough that they have no interest in surrendering the 11th overall pick in June’s draft to sign Bourn. And rightfully so.
“We don’t want to lose our first-round draft pick,” Alderson said. “We think that’s one of the ways we got into the predicament we’ve had over the past couple of years. We’ve very wary of that. It’s not our M.O.”
And of course whether Bourn is actually worth a big long-term contract is another issue entirely.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.