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Coleman: Difference-Maker? For Mets, D’Arnaud Fits The Bill

R.A. Dickey (credit: Marc Serota/Getty Images), Travis d'Arnaud (credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

R.A. Dickey (credit: Marc Serota/Getty Images), Travis d’Arnaud (credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

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By Ed Coleman
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Finally, the deal which never seemed like it would come to fruition has been finalized.

R.A. Dickey, four catchers, a pitching prospect and an 18-year old outfielder have changed teams in a deal that was announced on Monday.

Mets GM Sandy Alderson was asked why things seemed to take so long. But, in essence, waiting and being patient paid off big-time.

And the value increased when first James Shields was traded by the Rays to Kansas City and then Zack Greinke was signed to a mammoth contract by the Dodgers. Ryan Dempster going to the Red Sox didn’t hurt.

So what was the genesis of the deal, according to Alderson?

As usual, the market dictated what the Mets’ course of action would become with their Cy Young award-winning pitcher.

Alderson insisted that the final decision to trade Dickey did not come early, but rather late in the process.

And the return obviously was nice, according to most observers in baseball. One executive said he was “completely shocked” that Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos agreed to the deal. Another commented that “he’s out of his mind.”

Alderson spoke often about obtaining a “difference-maker” in a deal involving Dickey, and catcher Travis d’Arnaud appears to fit that bill.

That doesn’t mean that d’Arnaud will break camp and be the Opening Day catcher in 2013 — he will most likely be here sometime near mid-season, maybe bringing batterymate Zack Wheeler along with him.

Anthopoulos said that prized pitching prospect Noah Syndergaard was the last player the Mets insisted on acquiring. Several scouts think he could turn out to be something special. He has a great fastball, a power breaking ball and a good changeup. Alderson was duly impressed.

John Buck should be the man behind the plate to begin things in 2013. The Blue Jays wanted Mike Nickeas along with Josh Thole because if Thole gets injured, they wanted to have a backup catcher familiar with Dickey’s knuckleball. Alderson was asked how he goes about replacing a Cy Young winner in the Mets rotation.

The deal is a good one — one the Mets had to make. It’s somewhat similar to the Wheeler deal, Alderson holding out then until he could extract San Francisco’s top prospect in exchange for Carlos Beltran. But it still leaves a lot of work to do, and the Mets GM knows it.

The prevalent theory is usually to sell high on a stock when you can.

Time will tell whether the dividend pays off.

C U soon
Eddie C.

Mets fans — are you at peace with the swap? Be heard in the comments…