R.A. Dickey heads to Toronto after Mets, Jays make deal that reportedly hinges on extension

Jeff Passan
Yahoo Sports

The New York Mets agreed to trade reigning Cy Young winner R.A. Dickey to the Toronto Blue Jays for a package centered around top catching prospect Travis d'Arnaud, a source close to the negotiations confirmed to Yahoo! Sports on Sunday afternoon. The trade is contingent on Dickey negotiating a contract extension within 72 hours, according to Foxsports.com, which first reported the deal's completion.

Following a long offseason in which New York simultaneously considered a contract extension for the 38-year-old Dickey while shopping him, the impasse in negotiations forced the Mets' hand and brought back a player in d'Arnaud they expect to be among their core in a long, slogging rebuilding effort.

View photo

.

R.A. Dickey could be pitching in Toronto next season. (AP)

Toronto, on the other hand, mortgaged the talented 23-year-old d'Arnaud, along with 20-year-old Noah Syndergaard, a hard-throwing right-hander with No. 2-starter upside, catcher John Buck (including cash to cover an undisclosed amount of his salary) and an as-yet-unknown prospect, to bolster an already-deep roster that will enter 2013 as the favorite in the American League East – and perhaps the entire league.

Dickey, a knuckleballer who mastered the craft in the Mets' spacious Citi Field, goes to Toronto, where he'll join a staff already larded with Josh Johnson, Brandon Morrow, Mark Buehrle and Ricky Romero. Johnson and Buehrle arrived in the offseason's first blockbuster, a 12-player deal with the Miami Marlins that also sent Jose Reyes, Emilio Bonifacio and Buck across the border. In addition to Dickey, the Blue Jays will receive catcher Josh Thole and another prospect.

[Yahoo! Sports Radio: Tim Brown on Josh Hamilton's impact in Anaheim]

Toronto's deep farm system, developed during general manager Alex Anthopoulos' tenure, paid off with another big trade. The Blue Jays acquired d'Arnaud three years and one day ago in a trade with Philadelphia for Roy Halladay and watched him blossom into a star at Triple-A last season, when he hit .333/.380/.595 in a supercharged Las Vegas environment that tilts in the hitter's favor.

Accordingly, Toronto was more than hesitant to give up d'Arnaud. Two executives who inquired about him in other trade talks told Yahoo! Sports the Blue Jays deemed him unavailable in trades. Toronto's willingness to give up a prospect of d'Arnaud's caliber pushed the Mets to deal after flirtations with the Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Angels, Baltimore Orioles and others. Mets GM Sandy Alderson played his hand powerfully, juggling the friendliness of Dickey's current deal (one year, $5 million) with an exploding market for starting pitching, a strong palette of suitors and the possibility that Dickey could re-up with New York.

The Mets and Dickey had worked for months trying to hammer out a deal, with Dickey seeking two years and $26 million and the Mets edging their way up to two years and $20 million. When it started becoming more obvious that the $6 million gap wouldn't be bridged – Dickey's discussion of the negotiations at a company holiday party miffed Mets management – New York moved into overdrive to consummate a trade.

All of that leverage, plus Dickey's performance last season, yielded a market as fruitful as that of James Shields, for whom the Royals this week traded Wil Myers, the minor leagues' top hitting prospect. And between d'Arnaud and Syndergaard, the Mets arguably got more in return than the Rays.

Now comes time for the Blue Jays to work with Dickey in hopes their discussions find more success. With Zack Greinke fetching nearly $25 million a year and Anibal Sanchez getting $16 million a year as free agents this offseason, Dickey could reasonably ask for more than the $13 million a year he requested from New York.

[Related: Phillies bolster pitching with veterans Mike Adams, John Lannan ]

Dickey went 20-6 this season with a 2.73 ERA and threw a league-high 233 2/3 innings for the Mets, whose financial troubles have led to a full-scale overhaul under Alderson. Between this deal and the July 2011 trade that netted the Mets starter Zack Wheeler for Carlos Beltran, Alderson's two signature moves as GM involve flipping impending free agents for high-ceiling prospects.

Wheeler is on the cusp of the major leagues and would join Matt Harvey and Jonathon Niese as the core of a strong young rotation that could blossom and make the Mets contenders once owner Fred Wilpon – or new ownership – starts carrying a payroll reflective of a team in New York.

Toronto, coming off a 73-89 finish in which it finished just four games ahead of the last-place Red Sox, looks eminently dangerous this year, boasting a five-deep rotation and lineup with Reyes, Bonifacio, Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion, Brett Lawrie, Colby Rasmus, J.P. Arencibia, Adam Lind and free-agent signing Melky Cabrera.

Other popular content on the Yahoo! network:
NFL to observe moment of silence prior to Week 15 games
Kevin Garnett, Kevin McHale reunite and share a long and needed hug
GrindTV photo and video: Stunning image of 'tornado' school of spawning fish

View Comments
  • Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda suspended 10 games for using pine tar

    Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda suspended 10 games for using pine tar

    BOSTON - New York Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda was suspended for 10 games by Major League Baseball on Thursday for using pine tar to help him grip the ball. "I accept it," Pineda said before Thursday's game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway … More »

    The Canadian Press - 4 minutes 55 seconds ago
  • Impact brass confident new coach Klopas can turn around bad MLS season start

    MONTREAL - Montreal Impact management are confident that new coach Frank Klopas will get the team back on track after a horrendous start to the Major League Soccer season. Sporting director Nick De Santis said Thursday that Klopas has done a good … More »

    The Canadian Press - 6 minutes ago
  • Colorado PG Spencer Dinwiddie heading to NBA

    University of Colorado junior point guard Spencer Dinwiddie is skipping his senior season and will declare for the NBA draft. Dinwiddie said at a news conference in Boulder on Thursday that he believes he's a ''first-round talent'' and doesn't … More »

    AP - Sports - 6 minutes ago
  • Hicks homers, Twins beat Rays 9-7

    Hicks homers, Twins beat Rays 9-7

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- Aaron Hicks hit a three-run homer, Kurt Suzuki drove in three runs, and the Minnesota Twins beat the Tampa Bay Rays 9-7 Thursday. … More »

    AP - Sports - 8 minutes ago
  • NBA fines Josh McRoberts $20K for forearm to LeBron James' throat, upgrades foul to flagrant-2 (Video)

    NBA fines Josh McRoberts $20K for forearm to LeBron James' throat, upgrades foul to flagrant-2 (Video)

    Despite the increased penalty and fine, the Charlotte Bobcats forward avoids suspension, and will be available for Game 3 in North Carolina. … More »

    Ball Don't Lie - 8 minutes ago
  • Canadian alpine skier and former world champion John Kucera retires

    CALGARY - John Kucera's career was shorter than he wanted but he leaves alpine ski racing knowing he achieved two firsts for Canada. … More »

    The Canadian Press - 10 minutes ago
  • New statue of Penn State's Paterno set for 2015 unveiling: alumni

    By David DeKok HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - Fundraising for a new statue depicting Joe Paterno "as the man he was and not Joe the football coach" is set to begin two years after his image was removed from Penn State University because of a … More »

    Reuters - 11 minutes ago
  • Mavs home after split at Spurs, but is that good?

    Mavs home after split at Spurs, but is that good?

    Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks are coming home after showing they won't go quietly in a first-round series with top-seeded San Antonio. Part of the big German wants to stay in South Texas after the Mavericks squandered a strong game in the … More »

    AP - Sports - 12 minutes ago
  • Keeneland to run its final races on Polytrack

    Keeneland to run its final races on Polytrack

    When Keeneland's spring meet ends Friday, so will an era. The scenic horse racing landmark in the heart of the Bluegrass State will run its final races on the Polytrack synthetic surface before replacing its main track with dirt and a new drainage … More »

    AP - Sports - 15 minutes ago
  • Joey Hishon's long road from concussion recovery ends with NHL debut

    Joey Hishon's long road from concussion recovery ends with NHL debut

    On Tuesday, Joey Hishon was skating with the Colorado Avalanche’s Black Aces in Cleveland. Afterward, he was called into the coach’s office and given the news that he was being called up to the NHL. … More »

    Puck Daddy - 15 minutes ago
  • Lubash wins Big A feature

    NEW YORK (AP) -- Lubash, making his season debut, held off Kharafa by a neck Thursday in the $62,000 allowance feature for New York breds on the turf at Aqueduct. … More »

    AP - Sports - 17 minutes ago
  • Phelps wins first race in comeback

    Phelps wins first race in comeback

    By Julian Linden PHOENIX (Reuters) - Michael Phelps made an ominous start in his comeback to competitive swimming on Thursday, setting the fastest time in the 100 metres butterfly heats at a USA Swimming Grand Prix meet in suburban Phoenix. Racing … More »

    Reuters - 18 minutes ago
  • Late Lima strike gives Benfica win over Juventus

    (Reuters) - A brilliantly-worked Lima goal gave last year's runners-up Benfica a late 2-1 win at home to Juventus in the first leg of their Europa League semi-final on Thursday. Central defender Ezequiel Garay headed Benfica in front after only … More »

    Reuters - 21 minutes ago
  • Lima blasts Benfica to Juventus win as Sevilla ease to victory

    Lima blasts Benfica to Juventus win as Sevilla ease to victory

    A stunning late goal from Brazilian Lima gave Benfica a 2-1 win over Juventus in the first leg of their Europa League semi-final while Sevilla won 2-0 against Valencia to seize the initiative in their all-Spanish clash on Thursday. Benfica scored … More »

    Reuters - 22 minutes ago
  • Yankees' Pineda banned 10 games for using pine tar

    Yankees' Pineda banned 10 games for using pine tar

    (Reuters) - New York Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda has been suspended 10 games by Major League Baseball on Thursday for having a foreign substance on his body during Wednesday's game against the Boston Red Sox. Pineda was ejected from the game in … More »

    Reuters - 23 minutes ago
  • Bobcats' Josh McRoberts fined $20,000

    Bobcats' Josh McRoberts fined $20,000

    NEW YORK (AP) -- Charlotte Bobcats forward Josh McRoberts was fined $20,000 by the NBA on Thursday for making unnecessary and excessive contact with Miami Heat forward LeBron James. … More »

    AP - Sports - 24 minutes ago
  • Sharapova advances to Stuttgart quarterfinals

    Sharapova advances to Stuttgart quarterfinals

    STUTTGART, Germany (AP) -- Defending champion Maria Sharapova defeated Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-4, 6-3 on Thursday to set up a Porsche Grand Prix quarterfinal with top seed Agnieszka Radwanska. … More »

    AP - Sports - 25 minutes ago
  • Swimming-Phelps wins first race in comeback

    * Qualifies for national titles later this year * Reached turn in second place before pulling away (Adds quotes) By Julian Linden PHOENIX, April 24 (Reuters) - Michael Phelps made an ominous start in his comeback to competitive swimming on … More »

    Reuters - 25 minutes ago
  • Why Jones vs Teixeira will be a 'fun fight'

    Why Jones vs Teixeira will be a 'fun fight'

    Yahoo Sports’ Kevin Iole breaks down UFC 172’s main event … More »

    Yahoo Sports Videos - 27 minutes ago
  • Kevin Iole’s prediction for UFC 172 - Jones vs Teixeira

    Kevin Iole’s prediction for UFC 172 - Jones vs Teixeira

    Yahoo Sports' Kevin Iole explains why the main event of UFC 172 won’t go the full distance … More »

    Yahoo Sports Videos - 27 minutes ago
  • Pine tar, Vaseline, spit all part of baseball

    Pine tar, Vaseline, spit all part of baseball

    It's fair to suspect that Michael Pineda isn't the only pitcher trying a few tricks on the mound from time to time. The Yankees pitcher was suspended for 10 games for having a glob of pine tar on his neck to rub on his hands to grip the ball on a … More »

    AP - Sports - 28 minutes ago
  • Everest climbing season in disarray after deaths

    Nepal's attempts to salvage the Mount Everest climbing season fell flat Thursday as major expedition companies canceled their climbs and many Sherpas quit the mountain after an avalanche killed 16 of their fellow guides last week. While the season … More »

    AP - Sports - 29 minutes ago
  • Known for glove, Nolan Arenado improving at plate

    Known for glove, Nolan Arenado improving at plate

    Nolan Arenado is known for his hit-robbing glove at the hot corner. So he sends Troy Tulowitzki batting practice video for evaluation, hangs around Carlos Gonzalez near the cage to pick up pointers and has hitting conversations with Justin Morneau … More »

    AP - Sports - 30 minutes ago
  • Secret to Dallas Stars success? Meet the #RallyBelly

    Secret to Dallas Stars success? Meet the #RallyBelly

    Jamie Benn didn't start the fire. It wasn't Benn. It was the Rally Belly. … More »

    Puck Daddy - 31 minutes ago
  • Michael Phelps qualifies fastest for 100 butterfly final in comeback meet

    Michael Phelps qualifies fastest for 100 butterfly final in comeback meet

    MESA, Ariz. - A giddy Michael Phelps qualified fastest for the 100-metre butterfly final Thursday in his first competition since retiring after the 2012 London Olympics. Friend and rival Ryan Lochte was second-quickest, winning his heat in 52.94. … More »

    The Canadian Press - 33 minutes ago
  • Pacers GM Kevin Pritchard cites pretty high-ranking source in tweet saying Frank Vogel's job is safe

    Pacers GM Kevin Pritchard cites pretty high-ranking source in tweet saying Frank Vogel's job is safe

    "Larry Bird just told me his sources say Frank Vogel's job is safe." … More »

    Ball Don't Lie - 37 minutes ago
  • Tiger Woods' rocky season

    Tiger Woods' rocky season

    While the PGA Tour continues to roll on with golf tournaments and new champions, a lot of the focus still sits with a man that is recovering from a back surgery.

    Tiger Woods, the No. 1 player in the world, missed the Masters because of a surgery on

    More »

    44 minutes ago
  • Habs sign pair to entry-level contracts

    MONTREAL (AP) -- The Montreal Canadiens signed Union College scoring leader Daniel Carr and Ontario Hockey League forward Connor Crisp to entry-level contracts Thursday. … More »

    AP - Sports - 38 minutes ago
  • Texas' Kouzmanoff to have back evaluated

    Texas' Kouzmanoff to have back evaluated

    Texas third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff was scheduled to be evaluated Friday at home by a back specialist before the Rangers have to make a roster move to active Adrian Beltre from the disabled list. Kouzmanoff, who is hitting .362 in 13 games and is … More »

    AP - Sports - 45 minutes ago
  • Cabrera, Scherzer lift Tigers by ChiSox

    Cabrera, Scherzer lift Tigers by ChiSox

    Miguel Cabrera drove in three runs, Max Scherzer struck out 10 and the Detroit Tigers beat the Chicago White Sox 7-4 Thursday. Joe Nathan pitched the ninth for his fourth save in six tries. He got the final two outs on a strikeout where Jose Abreu … More »

    AP - Sports - 47 minutes ago
  • Michael Phelps wins 100 fly heat in comeback meet

    Michael Phelps wins 100 fly heat in comeback meet

    A giddy Michael Phelps qualified fastest for the 100-meter butterfly final Thursday in his first competition since retiring after the 2012 London Olympics. The 28-year-old swimmer was second at the turn and came on down the stretch to win his heat … More »

    AP - Sports - 48 minutes ago
  • Meet the hardest thrower in baseball

    Meet the hardest thrower in baseball

    Yordano Ventura has reached 103 miles per hour on the radar gun this season. Yahoo Sports' Evan Doherty looks at the Royals pitcher and what kind of difference his speed makes for opposing batters. … More »

    Yahoo Sports Videos - 49 minutes ago
  • Marshall hires Lakers' Dan D'Antoni

    Marshall hires Lakers' Dan D'Antoni

    Marshall hired Los Angeles Lakers assistant Dan D'Antoni as its men's basketball coach Thursday. The 66-year-old D'Antoni is scheduled to be introduced at a news conference on Friday. He replaces Tom Herrion, who resigned last month after an 11-22 … More »

    AP - Sports - 54 minutes ago
  • NLRB to review Northwestern union ruling

    The National Labor Relations Board has granted Northwestern University's request that it review its ruling that football players at the university are essentially employees of the school with full collective bargaining rights. It said a previously … More »

    AP - Sports - 54 minutes ago
  • NFL owners to discuss expanded playoffs

    NFL owners to discuss expanded playoffs

    The NFL will discuss expanded playoffs at the owners' meetings next month in Atlanta. Commissioner Roger Goodell told a gathering of Associated Press Sports Editors on Thursday that a vote is uncertain on the proposal to add two teams to the … More »

    AP - Sports - 55 minutes ago
  • Duke assistant Jackson named Cougars coach

    CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) -- The College of Charleston has hired Duke assistant Candice Jackson as its women's basketball coach. … More »

    AP - Sports - 58 minutes ago
  • Kosar believes he's off TV for slurred speech

    Former Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar believes he's been unfairly sacked as a TV broadcaster. Kosar has been removed as a color commentator for Cleveland's preseason games by the team. The Browns said Wednesday night he was being replaced by … More »

    AP - Sports - 1 hour 0 minutes ago
  • NFL questions appear on 'Jeopardy' (Tebow included!) but contestants miss easiest one

    NFL questions appear on 'Jeopardy' (Tebow included!) but contestants miss easiest one

    It's not often you see a bunch of NFL questions on the game show "Jeopardy" (fine, it's answers, and you answer in the form of a question) but they recently popped up. You never know how sports questions will go over on the show, known for much … More »

    Shutdown Corner - 1 hour 2 minutes ago
  • Speeding Ferrari driver sidelined, fined, young passenger OK, in B.C. incident

    VANCOUVER - Mounties say they're appalled by the actions of a Ferrari driver from Langley, B.C., who used area roads as his personal race track. … More »

    The Canadian Press - 1 hour 3 minutes ago
  • Mets hand Cards' Lynn first April loss

    Mets hand Cards' Lynn first April loss

    Chris Young homered to start New York's comeback and slumping Curtis Granderson singled in a run as a pinch hitter as Bartolo Colon and the Mets beat the St. Louis Cardinals 4-1 Thursday to send Lance Lynn to his first career loss in April. New … More »

    AP - Sports - 1 hour 6 minutes ago