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Dan Haren is not Bartolo Colon

By Mike Silva ~ July 24th, 2010. Filed under: Mike Silva, New York Mets.

The Yankees, Phillies, and Cardinals are all rumored to have interest in Arizona RHP Dan Haren. Unlike Cliff Lee, who is a free agent at the end of the season, Haren is signed to three more years, including one which is an option. In many ways he is the perfect complement to each team’s ace and would upgrade their roster considerably. The one team that is conspicuously missing is the New York Mets.

The naysayer will point out the Mets don’t have the prospect depth to fulfill Arizona’s demands. If anyone believes the Mets can’t match a Yankees offer of Joba Chamberlain, Ivan Nova, and Zach McAllister you are simply not paying attention. Wilmer Flores, Fernando Martinez, Jenrry Mejia, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, and Reese Havens all have value in the right deal. I haven’t even gotten into young arms like Robert Carson, Kyle Allen, and Jeurys Familia. Perhaps the Mets players aren’t as “polished” as the Yankees trio, but certainly can be argued for having as much, if not more, upside. So why is Omar Minaya not in play for Haren? He makes so much sense on many levels. I would go as far to say the Mets should consider trading Mike Pelfrey or Jonathan Niese in a deal for Haren. Could it be Omar has flashbacks of another mid season deal he completed as general manager of the Montreal Expos?

Back on June 27th, 2002 Minaya trade Cliff Lee, Grady Sizemore, Brandon Phillips, and Lee Stevens to the Indians for Bartolo Colon and Tim Drews. Of course Sizemore, Lee, Phillips, and Colon were the primary pieces in the deal. At the time the Expos were just six games back of Atlanta in the East and a few games off the Wild Card pace. Some believe Minaya, realizing Montreal was going to be contracted, used the deal for his own personal career aspirations. What better resume than taking the Expos to the playoffs while on death’s bed.

It turned out to be a failure as Colon won 10 games, but Sizemore and Lee went on to stardom. The Expos were actually a worse team after that deal than before. There was no chance they could sign Colon to a long term deal after that season. It was the proverbial “all in” at he craps table and Minaya lost. Could it be that he remembers the fate of the 2002 Expos and is fearful of it happening again? After watching his former colleague Jim Duquette trade Scott Kazmir in 2004 does he fear 2010 could be his 2004?

We really don’t know since Minaya rarely gives you much to analyze when he speaks. What I do know if this season could be the fourth consecutive year the team hasn’t met expectations. Outside of 2009, where injuries could be to blame, Minaya failed to put together the right complementary pieces for his star core. During his tenure he has been able to reel in the big free agent fish, but his trades have left much to be desired. The ones that have worked out – Oliver Perez, Johan Santana, Angel Pagan- had a ton of luck involved. If the Yankees or Red Sox felt comfortable with the depth of their farm system they could have trumped the Mets offer easily. How Minaya obtained Santana without giving up Pelfrey or Fernando Martinez I will never know. If Angel Pagan didn’t aggravate Lou Piniella so much in 2007 perhaps the Mets could not have reacquired him for cash. We all know Oliver Perez as an unwanted throw in.

The 2010 Mets don’t need to make a move for the sake of it. However, as we have pointed out on the site, Dan Haren isn’t just a “win now” move, but one that could make them better in 2011 and beyond. Outside of Santana is anyone on the Mets staff the caliber of pitcher of Haren? This offseason the top starting pitchers available will be Bronson Arroyo, Ted Lilly, and Javier Vazquez. I don’t include Cliff Lee because many believe it’s a foregone conclusion he goes to the Bronx. Doesn’t Haren appear to be a better value than any of those pitchers?

Perhaps I am reading too much into this. All I know is Dan Haren is not Bartolo Colon. I also have my doubts that any of the Mets kids are as good as Sizemore or Lee. Regardless, prospects are just that until they make it in the big leagues. I do know that David Wright, Jose Reyes, and Johan Santana won’t be in their prime forever. What a shame to waste it waiting for a “maybe” like Wilmer Flores. It appears Dan Haren can be had and the Mets should go all out to see if they can get him even if it means taking on a Chris Snyder or Chad Qualls. I believe they have the pieces to do it. But do they have the guts?

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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9 Responses to Dan Haren is not Bartolo Colon

  1. Matt

    100% agree with you here. You nailed all of the points about potential free agents in the off-season. Haren trumps them all outside of Lee.

    It baffling how badly the Mets organization is run. Santana and Pelfrey are practically begging Met management to bring someone in. What have they gotten so far? Zzzzz.

  2. RealityChuck

    What “everybody knows” about the Perez deal is wrong. Omar had already discussed a Perez for Nady trade with Pittsburgh. He turned it down when it was offered to him because he didn’t want to trade a regular for a guy sent down to the minors. When he needed a reliever, he asked Pittsburgh to add a reliever to the deal. This was reported in the NY Times just after the trade.

  3. Donnie Fortuna

    Some believed the Expos would be contracted? Minaya was signed for a 1 year deal. The contraction had been agreed to. The dude was trying to SAVE the Expos by getting them into the playoffs and sure, he was trying to pad his resume, but the Colon trade was a GOOD TRADE. Seriously folks, i’ve been seeing this Colon crap since Minaya was hired, but especially in the past few days. It’s revisionist history and it’s tired bullcrap. Is Minaya a good GM? I think there is more than enough evidence not counting Colon that indicates he’s certainly overhyped. But really, people are very convinient in forgetting the full Expos saga, contraction had been approved 28-2, and it was only postponed a week or two AFTER this trade beyond 2006. Needless to say, if i had a franchise that was going to be contracted, i’d trade all my prospects too…. Let’s nail Minaya for trades and moves he really screwed up, like Heath Bell, Brian Bannister, and others. The Colon thing really needs to die. It’s tired and it makes us Mets fans look dumb. Mike, you are a great writer, one of my favorites, surely you havent been sucked into the Colon revisionist history….

  4. Mike Silva


    I think the point I was making is that he doesn’t want to make “that type of trade” now. You can debate the Expos scenario, but on the surface Lee, Sizemore for Colon wasn’t good for a team that couldn’t sign the player. Just like giving up two top prospects for Cliff Lee wouldn’t make sense. Haren, well, totally different story.

  5. John H.

    Nice post. Wasn’t Brandon Phillips in the Colon deal, too?

    Also, your site looks great on my Android phone.

  6. R U Kidding

    Mets’ prospects aren’t that good. FMart batting 250 always hurt. Flores is in Single A. Mejia is hurt has yet to succeed in double A. Havens is always hurt hasn’t done much when he isn’t. Tejada a reserve IF. Holt looks like a washout. Not much to get a solid starter with a decent contract for 2+ years.

  7. Mike Silva

    John H.

    Yes, you’re right, I left off Phillips. Thanks for the heads up – it’s corrected.

  8. Michael Alive

    You are 100% right! I want Haren just as bad as you do! But, the one thing that I feel you left out is The Wilpons don’t want to take on the money! I really think this is the reason this team is where it is and not at least trying to acquire Haren. It just makes way to much sense, so the Mets will never pull it off! I have lost all faith in this organization! I really hope they do something that will help me change my mind!

  9. Anonymous

    You’re an idiot !! Did you really imply that Oliver Perez has been a positive for the Mets ? He’s been a disaster, and the money we spent on him precluded us from going after John Lackey this past off season and Don Haren at the trade deadline.

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