AP source: Mets add CF Marte with $78 million, 4-year deal

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Starling Marte

FILE – Oakland Athletics’ Starling Marte rounds third base on his way to scoring against the Chicago White Sox during the third inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., on Sept. 9, 2021. The New York Mets have bolstered their lineup with three free-agent deals, adding speedy center fielder Starling Marte to go along with Mark Canha and All-Star infielder Eduardo Escobar. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Mets have bolstered their lineup with three free-agent deals, adding speedy center fielder Starling Marte to go along with Mark Canha and All-Star infielder Eduardo Escobar.

Marte’s four-year contract is worth $78 million, according to a person familiar with the deal. New York also has agreements in place with Canha, a veteran outfielder who also can play first base, and Escobar, who hit 28 homers this season.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on Saturday on condition of anonymity because the contracts are pending physicals and haven’t been announced by the team.

It’s the first set of big moves by New York since Billy Eppler took over as general manager, promising on his first day to pursue pricey free agents and create a perennial World Series contender.

The spending spree for Mets owner Steve Cohen also comes after he publicly criticized the representation for pitcher Steven Matz, who has agreed to a $44 million, four-year contract with St. Louis.

“I’m not happy this morning. I’ve never seen such unprofessional behavior exhibited by a player’s agent. I guess words and promises don’t matter,” Cohen wrote Wednesday on Twitter.

Rob Martin, the pitcher’s agent, wrote in a text to The Associated Press: “We handle things the right way and so does Steven.”

New York went 77-85 this season, fading to third in the NL East after a strong start.

Marte, 33, played for Miami and Oakland this year, batting .310 with 12 homers, 55 RBIs and a major league-high 47 steals in 120 games.

Marte made his big league debut in 2012 with Pittsburgh. He is a .289 hitter with 126 homers, 46 triples, 502 RBIs and 296 steals in 10 years in the majors.

The 32-year-old Canha hit .231 with 17 homers, 61 RBIs and 12 steals in 141 games with Oakland this year. He spent his first seven big league seasons with the Athletics, batting .244 with 89 homers and 294 RBIs.

The 32-year-old Escobar was a first-time All-Star in 2021, when he batted .253 with 90 RBIs and a .786 OPS for Arizona and Milwaukee. The switch-hitter has been a solid offensive contributor and a steady defender at third base the past four seasons, except for a slump during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.

Escobar has spent most of his time at third base, but he has experience all over the infield. His versatility could be key for the Mets if they don’t bring back free agent Javier Báez.

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AP Baseball Writers Jake Seiner and Jay Cohen contributed to this report.

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More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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2021 UConn Men’s Basketball Schedule

2021 UConn Men’s Basketball
Date Opponent Time TV
9/9 @Central Connecticut 6:30pm FS1%
9/13 @ Coppin State Noon FS2
9/17 @ Long Island 6:30pm FS2
9/20 @ Binghamton non FS2
9/24 vs. Auburn 2:30pm ESPN
9/25 vs. Michigan State/Loyola-Chicago TBD ESPN/ ESPN2
9/26 vs. TBD TBD TBD
9/30 @ Maryland-Eastern Shore 7:00pm CBS SN
12/4 @ Grambling State 4:00pm FS2
12/8 @West Virginia TBD TBD
12/11 vs. St. Bonaventure 3:30pm ESPN2
12/18 @ Providence 5:00pm FOX
12/21 @ Marquette 9:00pm FS1
12/28 @ Xavier 7:00pm FS1
1/1 vs. Butler 4:00pm FS1
1/8 @ Seton Hall Noon FOX
1/12 vs. St. John’s 8:30pm FS1
1/15 @ Providence 2:00pm FS1
1/20 @ Butler 9:00pm FS1
1/25 @ Georgetown 8:30pm CBS SN
1/29 @ DePaul 6:30pm FS1
2/1 vs. Creighton 6:30pm FS1
2/5 @ Villanova Noon FOX
2/8 vs. Marquette 6:30pm FS1
2/13 @ St. John’s Noon FOX
2/16 vs. Seton Hall 8:30pm CBS SN
2/19 vs. Xavier noon FOX
2/22 vs. Villanova 8:00pm FS1
2/27 @ Georgetown Noon CBS
3/2 @ Creighton 8:30pm FS1
3/5 vs. DePaul TBD TBD

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