The Mets exercised contract options to retain control of outfielder Jay Bruce and infielder Jose Reyes. The club also declined an option for lefthander Jonathon Niese, making him a free agent.
Bruce’s option is worth $13 million. Reyes’ is worth the league minimum, a concession negotiated by the Mets for giving their former All-Star a second chance.
After a domestic-violence incident in Hawaii last October, Reyes, 33, was released by the Rockies in the middle of a six-year, $106-million contract. After hitting .267 and giving the Mets a dynamo in the leadoff spot, Reyes could resume his role playing third base full-time next season.
Bruce, 29, hit .219 with eight homers and 19 RBIs in 50 games after his trade from the Reds to the Mets. With a surplus of lefthanded-hitting corner outfielders, Bruce could be traded, though his presence would help ease the sting of losing Yoenis Cespedes if he walks away in free agency.
Niese’s option would have cost $10 million. But after he posted an 11.45 ERA in six appearances, the Mets chose to cut ties with the lefty, paying a $500,000 buyout.
The Mets outrighted reliever Jim Henderson and infielder Eric Campbell. Henderson elected free agency and Campbell was sent to Triple-A Las Vegas.