Mejia, coming off of a two-suspension season, will not be eligible to play until the middle of the 2016 season. Tejada likely fits in a similar position as last year; a backup middle infielder.
Both tenders are worthy of both a scratch of the head and a questioning look toward the Mets front office. Primarily, Mejia takes PED’s and gets suspended TWICE in one season, completely abandoning his team, and still gets tendered a contract? Mejia was one of my favorites in 2014 with his trademark ‘Mejia Stomp‘, but that still does not stop me from not wanting to ever see him in a Mets uniform again. I fear this may be indicative of the front office’s plans for the 2016 bullpen, who may not be willing to spend the money on top relievers such as Darren O’Day, Tyler Clippard, or Joakim Soria. Other second-tier relief options include Jason Motte, Mark Lowe, Joe Nathan, and Neftali Feliz.
Unlike Mejia, I can see why Tejada was tendered a contract, but I don’t necessarily agree with it. After fracturing his leg in the NLDS, I think Tejada might have a Wilmer Flores-type fan value attached to him. To part ways with him after such an accident that propelled clubhouse sentiment all the way to the World Series may have been a turn for the worse in the hearts of many Mets fans. However, with the tendering of Tejada, the crowded New York infield remains in the same situation as last year, minus Daniel Murphy. Flores remains a viable option to start at either shortstop or second, with prospects such as Dilson Herrera, Matt Reynolds, and even Gavin Cecchini in the mix as well. The tendering of Tejada, I fear again, may be indicative of the lack of confidence the front office sees in possible free agent targets (i.e. Ben Zobrist, Asdrubal Cabrera, Murphy, etc).
A notable non-tender candidate is ex-Met Jack Leathersich, who was non-tendered by the Cubs earlier today. I would love to think a reunion is not out of the cards, as I think the kid has a lot of potential.
It remains to be seen what the Mets’ offseason plans are, but we may have gotten a little taste of them today. This is the Mets’ time to spend after going to the World Series—if they can’t increase payroll now, don’t expect them to for as long as the Wilpons are in charge. This is their time to shine.