Brandon Nimmo of the Mets reacts at first base after his...

Brandon Nimmo of the Mets reacts at first base after his fourth-inning RBI single against the Padres in Game 2 of their Wild Card series at Citi Field on Oct. 8. Credit: Jim McIsaac

LAS VEGAS — Mere days into his free agency — and ostensibly before teams and players are allowed to discuss financial terms — Brandon Nimmo already has received interest from a “majority” of clubs, agent Scott Boras said Wednesday. 

And the Mets are, of course, among them, according to general manager Billy Eppler.

Nimmo, 29, is near the top of a relatively shallow free-agent outfield market. Multiple rival agents at the general managers’ meetings this week cited George Springer’s deal with the Blue Jays two offseasons ago (six years, $150 million) as a ballpark for Nimmo’s market. The Mets sought Springer, who was a more accomplished player then than Nimmo is now, that winter but eventually deemed the cost too high.

Now they might face a similar decision with their own player.

“There are no centerfielders in our game that are available. They just aren’t,” Boras said, barely exaggerating the quality of the open market at that position. “Then you add leadoff to that, then you add a near-.400 on-base percentage to that. And he’s . . . an excellent defender. And then also he can play in New York. When you have those three elements that are there, he becomes a very, very integral part of a team [that won] 100 games. He’s a very proven commodity. I just don’t know of the very few that can replace him.” 

Technically, teams are not supposed to discuss specific monetary terms with free agents until Thursday. 

“There are a lot of teams in the free-agent market that are in the waters for a centerfielder. Whoever ‘Pixar’ guy will be the lucky one to finding Nimmo,” Boras said, using on camera one of the immensely corny scripted lines that seem to fill him with great joy. “We have already had discussions with many teams regarding Nimmo. Obviously, free agency is here. We’re working all hours, we’re talking with teams, we’re negotiating. So all this process is underway.” 

A knock on Nimmo is his ability to stay healthy. He played in a career-high 151 games last season, just his second time reaching triple digits. 

Speaking generally about evaluating the health and availability of a player before signing him to a big contract that would take him deep into his 30s, Eppler distinguished between acute injuries and chronic problems. Nimmo’s largely have been the former. 

“You kind of look at player and player value and impact being driven by how much do they play? And how good are they when they play?” Eppler said. 

The Mets publicly are talking up Starling Marte as a backup plan for centerfield if Nimmo signs elsewhere. It’s not clear if that is a genuine consideration or posturing as they negotiate with Nimmo. 

Marte, 34, was primarily a centerfielder from 2018-21, but the Mets put him in rightfield in 2022, his first year with the team. Nimmo rated better in center by most advanced defensive metrics, and Eppler on Wednesday cited Marte’s strong throwing arm as a reason they slid him to right. 

“I don’t doubt Starling’s ability to play centerfield,” Eppler said. “It’s second nature to him. I think he’d be a fine candidate if we called on him to do that.”


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