Despite what agents are saying, the market for the two slugging free agents on the market continues to be exceedingly slim.
The Mets, according to the New England Sports Network, seem to believe that they are the only team in on the Jason Bay bidding. Subsequently, they absolutely refuse to budge on their offer to the power hitting left fielder.
Bay has a four-year, $65-million offer on the table and there has been talk that he would sign if New York would add a year to bring the total to $75-80 million. The Mets don't seem inclined to do it despite rumors that Seattle might get involved and that the Angels are lurking in the weeds.
If the Mets are locked in on Bay, and according to an SI report yesterday that had New York's general manager and Bay's agent cloistered in a lengthy meeting, the market for Matt Holliday doesn't appear to be too much better.
The Yankees are always going to be a threat because they have the finances and the will to sign whomever they please. But they have denied interest in Holliday while claiming that they want to shave their payroll to $185 million in 2010 from $201.5 million last season. It currently stands at $187.5 million without adding Johnny Damon or Holliday to the mix.
The stagnation seems to have emboldened the Cardinals to stand their ground on a contract offer that is less than I thought it would take per season to land Holliday. But they're in a good place in the game of free agent chicken. After all, what happens to Holliday's market if the team that wants him the most suddenly and publicly declares it is no longer in the bidding and signs Mark DeRosa instead?