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Mets Owner on Impending Free Agent “We’re Always Open to Conversation”

Pete Alonso wants to stay in New York. The New York Mets want to keep their All-Star first baseman. However, owner Steve Cohen doesn’t anticipate any new deal to happen until Alonso hits free agency this offseason. He said this recently on the Meet at the Apple podcast.

“We want to keep him. He’s an important part of our team today and hopefully in the future. We know the fans feel strongly about him, and I’m not tone deaf. I totally understand the fans’ love of Pete, I hope he hits 55 home runs and makes it difficult on me in free agency. I would call that a great outcome.

Alonso, 29, has spent all five seasons of his MLB career with the Mets. He agreed to a one-year, $20.5 million contract back in January. Alonso has been open to negotiating after Opening Day, which is the opposite of what most big-name players do. The opener is an unofficial deadline to complete negotiations so they can head into the offseason without too much concerns.

Pete Alonso Has Envisioned Being a Lifelong Met

Alonso recently stated about being with the team for his entire career. He slashed .217/.318/.504 with 46 home runs and 108 RBI last season. His 192 home runs over the last five major league seasons are the most in baseball.

“I love it here, I definitely have envisioned myself being a lifelong Met, that’s something I’ve definitely thought about. I welcome the idea, but I can’t predict the future.” Alonso said last week.

“We want to keep him,” Cohen said. “He’s an important part of our team today and hopefully in the future.”

Cohen’s Comments Are Unsurprising

Mets president of baseball operations David Stearns acknowledged Alonso’s hitting free agency seemed like the most likely outcome. League sources expect the Mets to aggressively pursue Alonso in the offseason.

“We’re always open to conversation, but he’s earned the right to explore his value,” Cohen added on Meet at the Apple. “I’m highly supportive of players doing that. Just like we ended up figuring out with Edwin Díaz and Brandon Nimmo, it would be my hope that we do the same with Pete.”

Alonso has been baseball’s better power hitters, winning the 2019 National League Rookie of the Year after leading the majors with 53 home runs. He had 37 homers in 2021 and 40 in 2022. Although, his batting average was a career-worst .217 last year.

More Trade Speculation than Contract Talks

There’s been more trade talk than contract buzz. A late deal could come by Opening Day, but if Alonso is being traded, it might be closer to the trade deadline. Or, if the Mets are in playoff contention at the deadline, a trade might not be necessary. The Mets could retain Alonso through at least a pennant race. Alonso drew interest in last year’s trade deadline when the Mets moved veteran players to cut some salary and gain younger talent.

Cohen will ultimately be the one calling the shots when it comes to what type of contract it will take to retain a top-tier slugger like Alonso.

Photo Credit: © Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports


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