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UPDATE: Mets sign Rod Barajas

Feb 20, 2010, 3:20 PM EDT

Barajas headshot.jpgUpdate: Omar Minaya’s offseason catching cavalcade has finally come to an end. The Mets have come to terms with Rod Barajas to a one-year, $1 million contract. He can take home an additional $1 million in “easily-attainable” incentives.

3:11 PM:
Heyman says Texas has increased their offer to more than $1.5 million, but Barajas is still leaning towards accepting the Mets’ current offer of $1 million guaranteed.

8:41 AM: According to Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports, the Mets have offered free agent catcher Rod Barajas a guaranteed major league contract. Ken Rosenthal first hinted at this possibility late last night.

The game likely changed on the Mets’ side for two reasons:

1) As Rosenthal reported on Friday, the Rangers were offering Barajas $1.5 million if he makes the team out of spring training while the Mets were only offering $1 million, so this would at least guarantee him a roster spot and at least part of his salary for this season, while Barajas would only be a contingency plan in Texas.

2) Jose Molina agreed to a guaranteed contract with the Blue Jays on Friday, which includes a club option for 2011. He’ll either make $1 million or $2 million with the contract. The Mets lost some leverage there.

Barajas would have been a near-lock to make the Mets anyway, almost certainly as the starter, but this would at least take the suspense out of the situation. I have a hard time seeing him turn the deal down.

*By the way, Andrew made an excellent point in our comment section, wondering out loud if the Jays “overpaid” Molina so that the Mets, or someone else, would have to sign Barajas to a major league contract, insuring the Blue Jays will receive draft pick compensation. The Jays did only have one catcher (John Buck) on their 40-man roster before yesterday, so they certainly needed another backstop, but it’s an interesting thought, anyway. 

  1. Andrew - Feb 20, 2010 at 9:53 AM

    Is it possible the jays overpaid Molina to ensure Barajas get his minor league contract, thus ensuring the jays get draft pick compensation?

  2. Mark - Feb 20, 2010 at 10:32 AM

    That’s probably a big part of it. They had Raul Chavez on a minor league deal and he would have made the team as the backup. Probably not much of a difference between Chavez/Molina except Chavez is the better defender. Now he’s depth in case of an injury, which is pretty important. Had Chavez/Buck been in the majors and one got injured they’d have to rely on Arencibia.

  3. Moses Green - Feb 21, 2010 at 2:16 AM

    I come for once not to bury but to praise Omar Minaya. He learned from last offseason’s F.A. market and followed a correct hunch that if he waited out the Catcher market until January he would get a bargain. I have openly mocked him here and elsewhere for many things including his decision to wait on a catcher which he made public (good for future Nostradamus value when it works out like this.)
    Any Nationals fan starting to feel extra-queasy about IROD for 2 years 6 million now?

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