New York Mets begin their fire sale

The New York Mets fire sale we have all been waiting for has begun. The Mets have traded closer Francisco Rodriguez to the Milwaukee Brewers for players to be named later. Reports are that those players are not of any consequence. The really bad news for Rodriquez is he will not reach a contract clause that would’ve paid him 17.5 million dollars for 2012. It looks like he will join the Brewers as the 8th inning set up man, and getting to 55 games finished now seems unlikely. That was the magic number for him, and it looks like the Brewers will use him to make a strong second half run and then part ways.

This certainly makes sense for the Mets, as they need to shed salary and reorganize. They are also reportedly shopping Carlos Beltran. This move also makes a ton of sense for the Brewers. They do have a solid closer in John Axford who has converted 23 saves and has an ERA under three, but the rest of their bullpen had an ERA higher than four. Having Rodriguez in the set up role will certainly help them win more games, and help them extend their lead in the National League Central.

The Mets simply could not afford to keep using K-Rod as their closer and get themselves on the hook for another large salary in 2012. Without a doubt this likely sets up the premier free agent once the 2011 season is over, and then Rodriguez can sign with the highest bidder. The Mets will likely turn to Bobby Parnell to be their closer for the balance of 2011.

The Brewers are on the hook for about 5 million dollars in salary for their new set up man, so the risk is well worth the reward for them. They also may use both men as their closer down the stretch to keep them both fresh.

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