Several New York Mets turned free agents on Saturday, November 3, leaving the club with some choices to make regarding next year's roster. Here's what I would to with the team's newly-minted free agents, if I was general manager Sandy Alderson.
Tim Byrdak (RP) -- The 39-year-old Byrdak had a poor second half (0-2, 6.75 ERA). What's more troubling is that the lefty had elbow surgery in September and likely will be out until next year's All-Star break. For that reason, plus his age, is why I wouldn't brink back Byrdak at any price.
Jon Rauch (RP) -- The hard-throwing Rauch gave up some big hits in 2012, but he had modest success in the final few weeks of the season. However, the 34-year-old reliever made $3.5 million in 2012. That's a ton of money for a financially-challenged team. There's no room for him.
Ramon Ramirez (RP) -- Obtained from the San Francisco Giants for Angel Pagan, Ramirez was a complete bust. He contributed to the Mets having the worst bullpen in the Major Leagues. Moreover, he made $2.6 million last season. The Mets can find someone to blow games for a lot less.
Ronny Cedeno (INF) -- Cedeno is a serviceable backup infielder, but he earned $1.2 million in 2012. That a lot of money to pay for a .259 hitter. Thus, I'd pass on Cedeno. Besides, the Mets can fill his roster spot with local product Mike Baxter or Justin Turner. Both are more affordable.
Scott Hairston (OF) -- I endorsed bringing back Hairston in my article, "Mets Need Outfield Help in 2013 -- Five Free Agents to Consider." In short, Hairston had a career year in 2012 with 20 home runs and 57 RBIs and will be looking for a raise from his $1.1 million salary. I think he earned it.
Kelly Shoppach (C) -- Shoppach was one of my "Five Free Agent Catchers for the Mets to Consider." He's a solid contributor at the plate and behind it. Plus, he's one of the few free agent catchers the team can afford. At the very least, he's an upgrade over Josh Thole or Mike Nickeas.
Chris Young (SP) -- Young, who went 4-9 with a 4.15 ERA, has been prone to injuries over the last few seasons. In fact, the last time he started at least 30 games was 2007. Given the team's starting pitching depth, there's no reason for the Mets to take a chance on him at any price.
Adam Martini is a freelance sportswriter who grew up in Queens, N.Y. with a view of Shea Stadium from his bedroom window. He spent many nights in the upper deck at Shea rooting for the Mets. Adam follows back Mets fans on Twitter @PegCitySports.