Spring training is just 29 days away and one of baseball's most prolific power-hitters is still out on the open market for the taking. Yoenis Cespedes' asking price appears to be too high for a frugal Mets ownership group that has refused to overspend on marquee free agents since general manager Sandy Alderson was appointed following the 2010 season.
The Amazin's are fresh off an improbable run to the World Series that was sparked, at least in part, by the acquistion of Cespedes prior to the MLB trade deadline.
The heavy-hitting outfielder appeared in 57 games for the Mets, slugging 17 homers and driving in 44 RBIs to go along with a .287 BA and .334 OBP.
The Mets went from pretenders to contenders overnight after Cespedes' potent bat transformed an anemic offense littered with marginal minor league call-ups and scrappy veterans into one of the National League's most feared lineups.
The Cuban-born bopper was hampered by a shoulder injury during New York's push to the Fall Classic and recorded just three hits in 20 at-bats with just one RBI and 17 strikeouts in the five-game series against the Royals.
Cespedes, 30, has reportedly drawn interest from the White Sox, Angels, Astros and the NL East rival Nationals and Braves have also given consideration to signing the dynamic slugger.
It's unlikely that the veteran will get the six-year deal he sought at the onset of free agency, but a 2-3 year deal with in the $15-$20 million range along with an opt-out clause could be enticing for Cespedes.
The Amazin's have reportedly met with Cespedes, but no formal contract offer has been made. With each passing day Cespedes' price tag dips, but the Mets can ill-afford to play the waiting game with several teams waiting to snatch up the five-tool star.