According to the Associated Press, the New York Mets have re-signed utility infielder Alex Cora to a one-year, $2 million contract with $2 million vesting option for 2011 if Cora starts 80 games.
This is a classic “Veteran Presence” vs. “Glue Guy” signing by the Mets.
My definition of a “Veteran Presence” is a washed up player, who tries to latch on with a team. They really have nothing to offer a team except being a good clubhouse guy.
Cliff Floyd last year with the San Diego Padres is a perfect example of a “Veteran Presence.”
My definition of a “Glue Guy” is a veteran guy, who still has something left and comes to a new team and brings them together both on the field and off. The greatest example of a “Glue Guy” would be Terry Pendleton of the Atlanta Braves in 1991.
The Mets decided to re-sign a “Veteran Presence” in Cora. Normally I don’t have a problem with a signing like Cora. Most teams in baseball have a player like Cora on their team.
However, paying a player like Cora $2 million is ludicrous.
Look at it from this perspective. The Chicago White Sox just signed Andruw Jones and Omar Vizquel for a COMBINED $1.7 million.
Vizquel, despite being 43-years-old can still play defense with anyone. Jones still has the ability to hit a home run off the bench.
Cora has the ability to do neither. Cora’s OPS dipped from .719 in 2008 to .630, he can’t hit for power off the bench, and at 34-years-old (Cora will be 35 at the end of next season) Cora is a mediocre fielder at this point in his career.
Why Mets GM Omar Minya felt the need to sign Cora for $2 million at the beginning of the free agency period is beyond me. There were no other teams in on Cora.
Minaya could have waited until February to sign Cora and probably could have signed him to a deal anywhere between $500 thousand and $1 million.
Essentially what Minaya did was bid against himself.
A move like this shouldn’t be surprising to Mets fans because this is the same GM who gave a 48-year-old Julio Franco a two-year contract in 2006 when no other team was even willing to give him a one-year deal.
The more moves the Mets make, the more I am convinced they have no clue how to do business. Signing a “Veteran Presence” to a $2 million contract is just another example of that.
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