Sorry to harp so much on the Mets this week, but a) I am in Mets mini-camp - today is the last day, and b) the Yankees are sort of boring at the moment. It sounds like Johnny Damon's long, national nightmare will end soon enough, with Oakland the most likely destination.

As Brian Cashman e-mailed me yesterday, "We only have a little scratch."

Joel Sherman thinks the Yankees and Damon should consider a reconciliation.

Anywho, one of the many things that fascinates me about the Mets' team-fan disconnect is how, as we kicked off this offseason, I heard so many "Please, for the love of Neptune, don't sign this guy!!!" concerns. Bengie Molina probably was mentioned most in such a context.

It reminds me of the scene from this episode of "Seinfeld," when Frank and Estelle Costanza become more amorous.

George, seeing Jerry's van shaking: "What is that? That van's a-rockin'."
Jerry: "Don't go a-knockin'!"

So my question to you - and when I write "you," I mean "the three or four of you who will respond" - is this:

Of the many free-agent deals that have now beeen signed, which one would you have liked most to see done with the Mets?

In other words, you can't say, "I wish the Mets had signed Ben Sheets - but not for $10 million!" You have to pay $10 million, with $2 million more attainable in incentives, for Sheets. Or $16 million for Joel Pineiro. And so on.

Which player would you like to see with the Mets, for the contract he got from another team?

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Vote. Pretty please with a cherry on top.

--Here's the column I wrote on Johan Santana providing some optimism for Mets fans, in these times of deep pessimism.

--At the BAT dinner, Jim Palmer sounded somewhat forgiving of Mark McGwire. It's a refreshing change from the Carlton Fisks of the world who want to shake their fists and not contemplate context.

--Neil Best writes about why the Mets received so much Sunday night love from ESPN.

--Love the Jim Thome signing for the Twins, who are becoming the clear favorites to repeat in the AL Central. Although, as one opposing official noted, "Let's see how their game is changed by not playing in the Metrodome anymore."

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