The MLBPA would support the Mets if the club requests to have its first-round pick protected should it sign free agent Michael Bourn, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reported Thursday.
With the Braves extending Bourn a qualifying offer this season, any club wishing to sign him must give up their first-round pick unless the pick lands in the top 10. The Mets have the 11th pick in the draft but had the 10th-worst record in the majors.
The Pirates' failure to sign eighth-overall pick Mark Appel -- the presumed No. 1 pick who slipped due to signability issues after the Astros selected Carlos Correa first -- in last year's draft resulted in Pittsburgh getting the eighth pick in this year's draft as compensation.
Therefore, the Mets were pushed back from 10th to 11th and lost protection on the pick when signing a free agent who was extended the qualifying offer.
The Mets' argument would be the spirit of the rule put in place with the new free-agent compensation system meant to protect the teams with the 10 worst records, not simply those who have the top 10 picks due to draft pick compensation from the previous year.