Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that the Mets and free agent 1B/OF Jay Bruce have interest in a reunion.
The Mets don’t seem all that comfortable going into 2018 with Dominic Smith at first base, questioning his conditioning after he gained weight towards the end of the season. The Mets’ corner outfield is already spoken for with Yoenis Cespedes and Michael Conforto, though Conforto could conceivably move to center field full-time.
Bruce, 30, hit a combined .254/.324/.508 with 36 home runs and 101 RBI in 617 plate appearances between the Mets and Indians last season.
The Mets have nearly $121 million committed for the 2018 season already before accounting for a handful of arbitration-eligible players. It would seem the need to upgrade at second or third base would be a more pressing issue than adding a 1B/OF type like Bruce. If the Mets are truly uncomfortable with Smith as a full-time option, they could presumably wait until deeper in the offseason and see who is left among the likes of Yonder Alonso, John Jaso, Cameron Maybin, Jon Jay, Austin Jackson, and Melvin Upton, Jr.
Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season. The White Sox starter informed the team of his decision today, and the team issued a press release to that affect a few minutes ago.
The statement from general manager Rick Hahn. said “we recognize that reaching this decision is incredibly difficult for any competitive athlete, and our organization is understanding and supportive. We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season.”
Kopech, 24, has only four big league starts under his belt, all coming in late August and early September of 2018, but after a strong spring training he was likely to make Chicago’s rotation at some point in the 2020 season after sitting out all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Kopech was among the players sent to Chicago from the Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade back in December 2016. Others involved in the deal included Yoán Moncada, Victor Diaz, and Luis Alexander Basabe.
Now, however, Kopech has opted out.