The Phillies couldn't wait to get rid of him. The Yankees grabbed him, but now a rumor's buzzing around that the Yankees might not pick up Bobby Abreu's option, making him a free agent. That's half of the rumor. The other half is that if he gains his freedom, the Mets might add him to their roster.
At 33, Abreu's not a youngster anymore compared to players like Reyes and Wright. On the other hand, he is a youngster when next to Orlando Hernandez and Moise Alou. Call him middle-aged, baseballwise.
In 2007 he played in 158 games, drove in 101 runs, and had an OPS of .814 (.369 OBP +.445 slugging avergage).
Here's how those numbers stack up against last season's Mets outfielders, excluding Carlos Beltran, who's a mainstay in center field.
Alou, 40, played in 87 games, drove in 49 runs, and had an OPS of .916 (.392 + .524).
Shawn Green, 34, played in 130 games, drove in 46 runs, and had an OPS of .782 (.352 + .430).
Lastings Milledge, 22, played in 59 games, drove in 29 runs, and had an OPS of .787 (.341 + .446).
Endy Chavez, 29, played in 71 games, drove in 17 runs, and had an OPS of .705 (.325 + .380).
Abreu played in more games than any of the above four Mets, drove in more than twice as many runs, and had a higher OPS than all but Alou. But Abreu's skill may be declining, though not as fast as Shawn Green's. Last season Abreu's OBP sank below .400 for the first time since 2001.
If the Yankees decide to let Abreu take the same route as Joe Torre, the Mets should take the risk and make signing him a priority.