Why the Absence of Michael Conforto Extension Talks Shouldn’t be Concerning

Why the absence of Michael Conforto extension talks shouldn't be concerning

Michael Conforto recently said that the Mets haven’t had any recent conversations with him about an extension, but it shouldn’t worry Mets fans.

The biggest remaining free agent on the market is Trevor Bauer. He seems like a great fit for the New York Mets so that has been what all of the conversation surrounding the team has been about.

But, another significant storyline this offseason is if the Mets will extend their star outfielder Michael Conforto. The 27-year-old is scheduled to be a free agent at the end of the 2021 season. He said at the Thurman Munson dinner on Tuesday night that he hasn’t had a single conversation with President Sandy Alderson since November and that conversation in November wasn’t even about a possible extension.

Does Conforto deserve to get an extension? Of course, that isn’t even a debate. He was worth over 2.3 wins in a two-month season (which translates to almost seven wins in a regular six-month season). Fans obviously want Conforto to be a Met for the foreseeable future, but the main reason why there hasn’t been any conversation between the two sides is the extension isn’t the team’s #1 priority right now.

What are the more pressing issues for New York other than a Conforto extension?

The Mets have already had a busy offseason but they currently don’t have a complete team like the Padres and Dodgers do. They still need a defensive center fielder on their roster for this season. Jackie Bradley Jr. and Kevin Pillar are options that wouldn’t put the Mets over the Luxury Tax.

They could use another bullpen arm–Alex Colome and Trevor Rosenthal are still available. Adding another big-league starter wouldn’t hurt and obviously, Bauer is the biggest name but he is also the most expensive arm that would put the Mets above the Luxury Tax Threshold.

Once the Mets fill out their 26-man roster for this season, then they can talk about possible extensions beyond the 2021 season.

Michael Conforto still isn’t the first priority past this year’s club

As stated above, Conforto is a free agent at the end of the 2021 season, but do you know who else is? Francisco Lindor–arguably the best shortstop in the league and the new face of the franchise.

There’s no way that Steve Cohen can let Lindor reach free agency. After all, he approved a trade for Lindor for one significant reason: to be the only team able to bid on him for an entire season.

While Conforto is a huge piece for this team, if you could only pick one of the two to lock up, it would obviously be Lindor.

There could be a chance that Conforto is next winter’s DJ LeMahieu. LeMahieu was one of the top position players on the free-agent market this offseason but it was pretty clear that he wanted to be back with the Yankees.

Conforto seems like he wants to be with the Mets, but he is represented by Scott Boras, so he isn’t going to be afraid to hit the market and see what his true value is–just like LeMahieu did.

The Mets front office needs to upgrade this season’s roster, then lock up the face of their franchise who is headed to Cooperstown…and then they can try to lock up Conforto.

It shouldn’t be the end of the world if Conforto doesn’t have a contract extension by April 1 (Opening Day), so don’t put too much stock into Conforto and the front office not having any dialogue recently.

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