Last month, New York Mets owner Fred Wilpon told The New Yorker magazine that his star third baseman and soon to be free-agent, Jose Reyes, would never get "Carl Crawford money." He also threw in a few tidbits like Reyes had "everything wrong with him" and "he won't get it" to stress his point. Those fateful words may now come back to haunt the financially-troubled owner.
Reyes is off to a mind-boggling MVP-type season and leading a mid-season surge to a once improbable Mets wild-card playoff spot.
Forget Carl Crawford bucks, Reyes has even been bandied about as the next New York Yankees shortstop--replacing cross-town icon Derek Jeter. We're talking desperate Yankees dollars now.
The 28 year-old Reyes is still attached to his long-time agents even though there has been rumors about super-agent Scott Boras poaching the highly-desirable Reyes.
Reyes' current agents are Chris Leible--the godfather of two of Reyes' kids--and Peter Greenberg. Both associates have stood by Reyes through a couple of injury-plagued seasons and cries of overrated by fans and media. By the way, the two men are also friends of their client.
Reyes claims people are getting the wrong idea after a Fox Sports story said the Mets player had spoken with Boras.
"There is no chance I would ever leave those guys," said Reyes of Leible and Greenburg. " I mean, I have been with them since I was 17."
Wilpon might one of those people who are getting the wrong vibe from Reyes. The Mets owner might read into Reyes snub of Boras as some sign of loyalty.
The Mets are probably under the impression that by staying with his agents, Reyes can't be shopped around by Boras and a reasonable offer could keep their prize in his Flushing surroundings. That glimmer of hope is based on the delusional reasoning that since Reyes isn't represented by a blood-seeking shark who seeks the maximum contract for his clients, he is more about keeping contract talks simple and staying cozy with the Mets.
Reyes doesn't need Boras to get a huge contract. About two-third of the majors could use a lead-off third baseman who is currently leading the NL with a .341 average and 103 runs scored.
If Reyes isn't traded by the July 31 deadline, expect the free-agent flood-gates to open and the Mets left standing without their rubber boots.
Reyes' agents have not said what they are seeking, but it's a sure bet it will be a lot more than the $17 million per season that Jeter is getting.
Crawford signed a seven-year contract with the Boston Red Sox for $142 million.
At the moment, the Mets and Reyes are world's apart on what the team wants to pay and what their third baseman is expecting. He's earned it and Wilpon showed no devotion of his own when he dissed Reyes in public.
According to the New York Daily News, Reyes' friends say he talks about what he is looking for when the Met is away from the diamond.
"He talks about it all the time," said one buddy. "And if the Mets think they're getting him for, like, $95 million, they're wrong. He's going to get paid. He's clear about that."
Whatever the outcome, Wilpon is going to have to put a lot of money where his big mouth is if the Mets want to keep Reyes in blue and orange.