New York Mets president of baseball operations David Stearns joked during an appearance on Wednesday’s edition of the “Foul Territory” program that he’d set something up “tomorrow” regarding the re-signing of All-Star first baseman Pete Alonso.
Stearns later indicated that Alonso will reach free agency after the upcoming MLB season.
“Pete is a really good player,” Stearns explained, according to Ryan Chichester of Audacy. “He’s performed on a big stage here for a long time…I know how important he is to our fanbase. I think where we are right now, where Pete is, is everyone is gonna focus on this year. The best thing for us is for Pete to have a great year. The best thing for Pete is for Pete to have a great year. And then we’ll go forward from there.”
Stearns officially joined the Mets shortly after the 2023 regular season concluded and before it was learned that Alonso had hired Scott Boras as his new agent.
Reports throughout the winter have repeatedly suggested the 29-year-old will play in a contract year unless he surprisingly offers the Mets some sort of discount to commit his future to the only MLB home he’s known during his five campaigns in the big leagues.
“We’re certainly invested in trying to keep Pete a Met,” Stearns added during the conversation. “I’m hopeful that, over time, we’ll be able to work that out.”
It was previously reported that Stearns and Mets owner Steve Cohen both realize the club trading Alonso at any point before or during the 2024 campaign would be “unpopular” among fans.
That reality along with the fact that Stearns believes the Mets can compete for a playoff spot this year suggests the “Polar Bear” isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
However, fans understandably have questions about how Stearns and Cohen could view Alonso’s long-term future if the club is near the bottom of the division standings around the All-Star break.
Cohen signed off on a fire sale to acquire prospects last summer, and ESPN’s Paul Hembekides mentioned in January that Stearns “never prioritized” first base across his eight seasons as an executive with the Milwaukee Brewers.