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Don’t buy that J.D. Martinez jersey yet, New York Mets fans.
While Andy Martino of SNY noted there has been some contact between the National League East team and the veteran designated hitter, he reported they are not “anywhere near” reaching a deal.
He provided more context and made it seem like New York likely won’t end up signing Martinez this offseason.
According to Martino, the Mets “are already pushing the outer reaches of where they want to be with their 2024 payroll” and aren’t interested in paying a premium at the designated hitter position. The Milwaukee Brewers inked Rhys Hoskins to a two year, $34 million contract, and Martinez is someone who could commande more than that.
Outside of the financial component, New York also apparently wants to keep the DH spot open for Mark Vientos or veterans such as Starling Marte.
That means Martinez may end up bolstering another lineup in 2024.
While he is 36 years old, he remained productive as an All-Star in 2023 for the Los Angeles Dodgers who slashed .271/.321/.572 with 33 home runs and 103 RBI. It was the fifth time he drove in more than 100 runs and the fifth time he launched more than 30 home runs in his career.
Martinez has always been a productive slugger at the plate and has played for the Houston Astros, Detroit Tigers, Arizona Diamondbacks, Boston Red Sox and Dodgers throughout his career.
He won the 2018 World Series with Boston and is a six-time All-Star and three-time Silver Slugger.
While Martinez isn’t going to generate the headlines that Shohei Ohtani and others drew earlier this offseason, he is someone who would make any lineup better and could make the difference in a playoff push.
It remains to be seen where he will ultimately end up in 2024, but it doesn’t seem like it will be with the Mets.