PORT ST. LUCIE — The Mets will reimburse star closer Edwin Diaz’s salary while he is on the injured list after suffering a torn patellar tendon in the World Baseball Classic, league sources have confirmed. Athletic.
The Mets won’t end up paying Dias because of an injury while participating in the WBC. Major League Baseball has insurance to protect the team in these types of situations. As the New York Post first reported Thursday night, MLB’s insurance will cover Díaz’s 2023 salary of $18.64 million if the right-hander does not return this season. However, it is not clear whether his salary will still count against luxury tax.
The typical timeline for surgery recovery is usually eight months, Mets general manager Billy Eppler said, which would rule Diaz out for the 2023 season. After undergoing surgery Thursday, Diaz is expected to begin a formal rehab program in about a week.
Díaz was celebrating with his Puerto Rico teammates following a 5-2 win over the Dominican Republic when he was injured in a celebratory collision, according to one source. Athletic.
Under Steve Cohen’s ownership, the Mets have shown a willingness to pay a high price for success. The Mets’ total financial outlay for 2023 — meaning player wages and the luxury tax penalty they’ll pay — is $445 million. Given that situation, it’s hard to say how much of a saving in Diaz’s salary costs; It’s not like that number has stopped Cohen from spending in the future. Last month, “When I do something, I don’t do anything halfway. When I’m in, I’m all in. I don’t accept mediocrity very well. So I have some high expectations. If I have to invest in this club, I’m going to do it.
However, employees can take advantage of the back pay. As a team with World Series prospects, New York could be even better positioned to get more money at the trade deadline. Obviously, the Mets would love Díaz, the best closer in the game, healthy and productive.
(Top photo by Edwin Diaz: Brad Benner/USA Today)