Jon Daniels on report that he asked the Mets to wait for him: “Complete bull”

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Last week Andy Martino of the New York Daily News reported that Rangers general manager and New York native Jon Daniels had “communicated through back channels that he hoped the Mets would wait until after the World Series” to replace Omar Minaya as GM, leading to speculation that he was interested in hopping from Texas to New York.

Scott Miller of CBSSports.com asked Daniels about that report prior to Game 1 of the World Series last night and the GM had some pretty strong words in response:

Complete bull. That really pissed me off. Completely inaccurate. All I’m thinking about is the Rangers and the World Series. I’m in a great spot.

It’s a moot point, obviously, as the Mets hired Sandy Alderson as their new general manager a couple weeks before they could have talked to Daniels. And of course, “complete bull” or not, Daniels would have every reason to strongly deny the report at this point anyway. He’s right though, with the team in the World Series and new ownership in charge the Rangers’ gig is suddenly a very good one.

Noah Syndergaard: ‘I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency’

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Yankees starter Luis Severino and Phillies starter Aaron Nola both signed contract extensions within the last week. Severino agreed to a four-year, $40 million contract with a 2023 club option. Nola inked a four-year, $45 million deal with a 2023 club option.

While the deals both represented significant raises and longer-term financial security for the right-handed duo, some feel like the players are selling themselves short. It has become a more common practice for players to agree to these types of deals in part due to how stagnant free agency has become. Get the money while you can.

Mets starter Noah Syndergaard is in a similar situation as Severino and Nola were. He and the Mets avoided arbitration last month, agreeing on a $6 million salary for the 2019 season. He has two more years of arbitration eligibility left. A contract extension with the Mets would presumably cover both of those years plus two or three years of what would be free agent years. As Tim Britton of The Athletic reports, however, Syndergaard plans to test free agency when the time comes.

Syndergaard said, “I trust my ability and the talent that I have. So I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency and not do what they did. But if it’s fair for both sides and they approach me on it, then maybe we can talk.” He clarified that he would be open to a conversation about an extension, but the Mets thus far haven’t approached him about it. In his words, “There’s been no traction.”

Syndergaard, 26, has been one of baseball’s better starters since debuting in 2015. He owns a career 2.93 ERA with 573 strikeouts and 116 walks in 518 1/3 innings. Among pitchers to have logged at least 400 innings since 2015 and post a lower ERA are Clayton Kershaw (2.22), Jacob deGrom (2.66) and Max Scherzer (2.71). Syndergaard made only seven starts in 2017 yet still ranks seventh among pitchers in total strikeouts since 2015.

If Sydergaard doesn’t end up signing an extension, he will be entering free agency after the 2021 season. The collective bargaining agreement expires in December 2021 and a new one will likely be agreed upon around that time. Syndergaard will hopefully have better prospects entering free agency then than players do now.