Truck Day doesn't mean Mets' Hot Stove is cold

As equipment departs for Port St. Lucie, Fla., Alderson addresses fans at Q&A session

February 1st, 2018

NEW YORK -- Typically, Truck Day at Citi Field signifies the unofficial start of spring. When Mr. and Mrs. Met lug equipment bags out of the Citi Field clubhouse, up a short ramp and into one of the trucks hauling gear down to Port St. Lucie, Fla., as they did Thursday morning with a gaggle of cameras crowded around, the promise of a new season is nearly realized.

And yet for the Mets and so many other teams in 2018, Spring Training is approaching with a different tone. The Mets still have Hot Stove business yet to accomplish, a truth that was evident throughout general manager Sandy Alderson's Q&A session with fans at Citi Field.

"We're going to try to be opportunistic about it," Alderson said. "But we'll see where it goes."

Plenty of issues remain. Regarding free-agent third baseman Mike Moustakas, Alderson all but dismissed any notion that the Mets might pursue him, citing Draft-pick compensation requirements and Moustakas' lack of defensive versatility. Regarding , Alderson said he was intrigued by the infielder telling the New York Post that he prefers to play second base -- perhaps hinting there's still a deal to be had with free-agent third baseman . Regarding , Alderson said he appreciates Big Sexy, but he doesn't consider a reunion likely.

Those were mostly all statements Alderson has made in the past, reminding observers of a roster that -- for the third straight season -- will take on a familiar look no matter what happens in the coming weeks. Alderson is aware of that, too. As recently as Sunday at the Baseball Writers' Association of America's New York Chapter dinner, Alderson joked about how much of this winter he has spent reacquiring former Mets, including recent signings and .

Change may still come, perhaps even before the Mets' equipment trucks complete their drive down I-95. In addition to Frazier, the Mets are still weighing deals for or , and they remain plugged into the pitching market as well. Something may -- and likely will -- materialize soon.

"I think people like a little change," Alderson said. "We all like a little change in our lives. We like a lot of consistency and continuity, too. A baseball fan wants to know that their favorite player is coming back next year. But around the edges, people like change. They like something new. So in a perfect world, I think it would be fun to have some new people."

But at this point, any new players will have to carry their own equipment to Florida.