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Report: Two Years, Fewer Dollars Could Do Job For Mets, Dickey; Trade A Possibility

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Call him H.D. Dickey -- as in Hometown Discount?

Among Mets fans, the talk during this week's general managers' meetings has been whether the team will trade starter R.A. Dickey. That is, if the sides can't come to an agreement on an extension.

Dickey said Wednesday there's "been some progress" in his talks with the Mets, though it was a different story in the morning papers Thursday. By midday, speculation over the knuckleballer's future outside Queens raged on Twitter.

But it may not be as bleak as it sounds. The presumptive Cy Young Award favorite is "actively engaged in talks" with the Mets, according to the New York Daily News.

The team could strike an agreement "by offering two years and significantly fewer dollars" than the three-year, $36 million deal signed by Oliver Perez, thought by many to be the barometer in talks with Dickey, the Daily News reported.

The New York Post reported Wednesday that the Mets "were intensifying efforts" to gauge the trade market for Dickey as a fallback option. But executives from rival clubs "have not heard of intense trade talks," the Daily News reported.

Either way, general manager Sandy Alderson admitted shipping Dickey -- or another starter -- for chips is a possibility.

"Pitching is definitely our strength," Alderson said Thursday. "For different reasons, I'd hate to give up an R.A. Dickey or a Jonathon Niese or a Dillon Gee, but it is our strength and something we probably have to entertain. At the same time, we're not looking to go out of our way. If there's a place to have a strength, in terms of where we are and where we want to be, starting pitching is the place to have that strength.

"I don't want you to leave here thinking we're going to trade a starting pitcher, that it's an absolute. But it's logical for us to consider that."

Alderson said going into the offseason that retaining Dickey and third baseman David Wright would be his top priorities. From the meetings, he said "conversations are ongoing" with Dickey and Wright, but admitted his initial timeline was unrealistic.

"It was important for me to emphasize that we were going to get going early, in order to avoid any speculation about a Jose Reyes-type approach to this," Alderson said. "So in that sense, it was probably a good idea to emphasize speed, but unrealistic to expect that this was all going to be concluded quickly."

What's your gut say on the future of R.A.? Be heard in the comments below...

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