Roundup: Sexson hopes to meet Mets

Richie Sexson's representative tells the New York Daily News that he'd like to meet with the Mets, Jim Leyland decides a Shea future isn't for him, and Mike Cameron agrees to move for Carlos Beltran, in Wednesday's Mets roundup:

Big slugger Richie Sexson hit the free agent market on Monday, and one of the teams he's interested in speaking with is the New York Mets.

The agent for the power hitter, who turns 30 on Dec. 29, told the New York Daily News that his client would "absolutely" have interest in meeting with the Mets, who don't have a rock-solid first baseman at the moment.

New Mets GM Omar Minaya is looking to make a splash in his first winter at the helm of the team, which explains why names like Sammy Sosa and Manny Ramirez have appeared in the mainstream press.

Before Minaya took charge, the name of first baseman Carlos Delgado was being whispered in some circles, although that appears to have cooled. That could open the door for a look at Sexson, who played in just 23 games and collected 90 at-bats for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2004 before undergoing shoulder surgery.

While the Diamondbacks' gamble on the 6'7" Sexson did not pay dividends – the Milwaukee Brewers overhauled their major league roster by acquiring six players for their franchise player: Craig Capuano, Craig Counsell, Chad Moeller, Lyle Overbay, Jorge de la Rosa and Junior Spivey – Sexson's injury could wind up providing a bargain for whatever team winds up acquiring him.

Sexson has blasted 45 homers twice in his last three full seasons and has broke the 100 RBI mark in each of the three years, posting consistent batting averages of .271, .279 and .272. Even in his brief tenure with the Diamondbacks provided one memorable moment: a 503-foot home run off of the Chicago Cubs' Francis Beltran on April 27 that shattered several lights on the center field video screen at Bank One Ballpark.

The Mets patched things together this past season with a amalgam of Mike Piazza, Todd Zeile, Jason Phillips and Eric Valent at first base, but it's believed the team would like to establish continuity for the coming season.

Piazza has been told that his time at first base will be cut back if he's with the Mets next season, with the team looking at him more as a catcher after an infield experiment yielded so-so results. Zeile has retired and neither Phillips or Valent project as starting players.

Leyland passes: Jim Leyland, who interviewed with the Philadelphia Phillies for their managerial vacancy on Monday, has decided that the Mets job would not be for him.

Leyland told the Associated Press that he and GM Omar Minaya mutually agreed during a telephone conversation Tuesday that the position wasn't the right fit at this time. The Mets are said to be looking for a younger manager who would be involved in the year-round operations of the club, including scouting during the offseason.

Cameron agrees to move: Mike Cameron would agree to shift over to right field if the Mets sign Carlos Beltran, the outfielder told the New York Post.

Earlier this season, Cameron told reporters that he wouldn't be receptive to such a move, saying that if he wanted to play right field he would have signed with his hometown Atlanta Braves instead. Cameron may not have to worry too much, though: Beltran is considered a long shot to come to Shea Stadium, although it's probable he could land across town with the Yankees.

Former Mets in the news: The Kansas City Royals signed catcher Alberto Castillo to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.


Amazin Clubhouse Top Stories