MLB News

‘New York is my home’

Jeff McNeil with his family and Billy Eppler

Jeff McNeil with his family and Billy Eppler

Jeff McNeil with his family and Billy Eppler / SNY screengrab

The Mets made Jeff McNeil’s four-year extension official Tuesday morning, and by late afternoon McNeil and general manager Billy Eppler were sitting down at Citi Field to discuss how excited both sides are to get a deal done.

“Today is a great day for our organization,” Eppler said. “To be able to see a homegrown player get to the big leagues is one thing. To now be able to sign an extension and keep a homegrown player in our uniform just really adds the exclamation point to it all.

“We’re glad he’s here and we look forward to having him here for many years to come.”

McNeil’s new deal will reportedly pay him $50 million over the next four years, with a club option for nearly $16 million in 2027.

And though the former 12th-round pick in 2013 wasn’t a highly heralded prospect during his early career as a pro, he made his debut in 2018 and is now a two-time All-Star (2019,2022) and an NL batting champion (2022).

“Super excited, big day for both me and my family,” McNeil said. “Just super excited to be a New York Met for an extended period of time.”

“New York Mets [are] the only team I know,” he later added. “I’ve been in the organization since 2013, so that’s where I want to be. New York is my home and I’m sure happy to be playing for these fans and playing for this team for years to come.”

The 30-year-old said that extension talks picked up once he and the team didn’t come to an agreement ahead of the arbitration deadline earlier this month, with the process only taking about a week.

For McNeil, there was a point in his career when he wasn’t sure if he’d ever see the majors, so Tuesday’s extension certainly made him reflect on his journey to Queens.

“I was a 26-year-old in Double-A. I wasn’t really sure where my career was going to go,” McNeil said. “Came off some injuries and it all paid off. I was healthy that year and had a tremendous year. I actually think that Pete Alonso had a lot to do with that too, just playing with him, and we became good friends just kind of pushing each other. That was huge.

“But yeah, coming from that to the big leagues and winning a batting title and now this extension, I couldn’t have dreamed it. I don’t think it could have been any better than this.”

In the coming days and weeks, McNeil will join his teammates in Port St. Lucie, Fla., with all focus locked in on winning a World Series title….

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