Right Field

Farewell, Bilbo Baggins, Cy Young Award Winner

Should a diehard Mets fan be depressed that Cy Young Award winner and Tolkien fan R.A. Dickey is poised to become a Blue Jay?

Or should a diehard Mets fan be enthused that the Amazins are about to receive perhaps the no. 1 catching prospect around, Travis D’Arnaud, and a 20-year old pitching prospect John Sickels rates as an “A-,” Noah Syndergaard.

Why can’t both be true?

The 38-year old knuckleballer gave the beleaguered fanbase something to cheer about. After meandering through professional ball for 13 seasons, Dickey finally struck paydirt in 2010. After eight starts in Triple-A Buffalo, the Mets promoted him in mid-May and he never looked back. Over the past three years, his ERA+ has been 138, 112, and 140.

Dickey was under the Mets’ control for next season at a meager $5 million. Hoping to (finally) cash in on his success, Dickey went looking for a contract extension, eventually requesting . And yet, the Mets chose not to keep him, a signal that the Mets do not expect to be competitive until at least 2015 and/or the Wilpons reamin seriously cash-strapped.

As Tyler Kepner of the New York Times

Leave it to the Mets to botch something easy, like Luis Castillo dropping a pop-up with two outs in the ninth. When the best pitcher in the National League wants to stay with you for three more years, at a steep discount, you let him stay. Why is this so complicated?


Congrats, Jays fans. The offseason is hardly over, but barring any surprises, the Jays will enter the 2013 campaign as the plurality favorite to capture the American League East.

Jason Epstein is the president of Southfive Strategies, LLC. He was a public-relations consultant for the Turkish embassy in Washington from 2002 to 2007.


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