$10M option too expensive for Mets
The left-hander went 10-8 with a 3.21 ERA in 30 starts last season. He began the year by pitching 15 1/3 scoreless innings, then was on the disabled list from May 11 to June 1 because of tendinitis in his left shoulder.
A member of the Mets for the last seven seasons, the 39-year-old Leiter also has pitched for the New York Yankees, Toronto and Florida.
The Mets had said they were interested in keeping Leiter, but not at the price of the option. Kris Benson, another starter the Mets say they hope to re-sign, also became a free agent.
If the Mets had exercised the option, Leiter would have had 10 days to accept or reject it.
Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press