NL Cy Young winner R.A. Dickey feels he's been more than fair in his request for a market-value contract extension, but also understands the business side.
To that end, he told reporters that he likely won't be a Met beyond next season without one.
The have three options regarding their ace. They can deal him, extend him, or let pitch in 2013 at $5 million.
Both sides don't like that third option.
"If that's the decision they feel like is best for the club, and that's the decision that they make, I feel like it would be unfortunate, because it probably is going to mean I'm not going to be back (in 2014)," Dickey said during a holiday party for schoolchildren affected by Hurricane Sandy at Citi Field.
The 38-year-old knuckleballer also reminded the media that he won't negotiate during the 2013 season.
"I'm so close to free agency, and I don't want any distractions," he said.
General manager Sandy Alderson told reporters that a resolution could happen soon.
"Things are ongoing," Alderson said. "We continue to talk to R.A., and specifically his agent, and there's some progress being made there. Obviously, at the same time, we'll talk to some other clubs and keep R.A. to some extent appraised of those conversations. We're in a similar place today to where we were last week. But the surrounding circumstances have changed somewhat. So I hope we'll have more clarity in a few days. In the meantime, we're more or less status quo."
Citing sources, ESPN.com reported that the Mets are preparing a two-year, $20 million extension, not including the $5 million he's set to earn in 2013. Dickey was reportedly seeking a combined $26 million to $28 million for 2014 and '15.
"It's hard," Dickey said. "When people say it's business, it's not personal, well that just means it's not personal for them. I'm hoping it ends up in a good place, but also in the back of your mind you think it may not. That's sad.
"In the context of the market, you want what you think is fair, and I feel like we're asking for less than what's fair because that's how it's been for me. There is a surprise sometimes when things don't get done quickly and you already think you're extending the olive branch. At the same time, they have a budget they have to adhere to. I don't know those numbers. And I try not to take it personally."