While there’s mixed reports over whether or not the Mets will attempt to weasel out of their contractual obligations to a reliever they’ve already disciplined (albeit mildly), Biz Of Baseball’s Maury Brown updates his loyal readership on the Houston Astros’ handling of a similar incident from 2008.

The three-person arbitration panel, which last September heard a grievance filed by pitcher Shawn Chacon against the Houston Astros, has denied the player™s grievance.

Shyam Das, the chairman of the panel which also included representatives from Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association, stated that the Astros were within their rights to terminate Chacon™s contract without his entitlement to further compensation after the player attacked and assaulted General Manager Ed Wade (above) on June 25, 2008 after Chacon was demoted to the bullpen and was seeking a trade.

Shortly after Mets starter Johan Santana was victimized by a cheapo Hunter Pence HR into the Crawford Boxes — Pence’s 2nd HR of the night —- Jeff Wilpon announced K-Rod will not be paid while he recovers from thumb surgery, and the closer’s 2011 salary will no longer be considered guaranteed. The New York Times’ Michael S. Schmidt describes the Mets’ actions as having “little precedent in Major League Baseball”.  Not to mention the edict totally contradicts statements issued by Omar Minaya earlier in the day.

It’s a curious, if not thoroughly desperate move by a franchise that could’ve taken stronger action before Rodriguez claimed injury during a Saturday stint against the Phillies. On the other hand, if the Wilpons feel they’ve been treated shabbily by marquee acquisitions such as K-Rod, Santana, Carlos Beltran, Jason Bay  or Johan Santana, this might be the most most efficient course of action. They’re all but ensuring that such future additions to the payroll will be impossible ;  only agents with no other options whatsoever will recommend their clients relocate to a team owned by such disreputable businessmen.