Though Omar Minaya attends this week’s GM meetings at O’Hare Airport claiming the authority and bankroll to make deals, the New York Post’s Joel Sherman adds, “the industry is dubious about both issues.” More promisingly, however, Sherman can forsee a scenario in which Rod “Box Office” Barajas might soon don one of the Mets’ two dozen jersey combinations.

Because there will be some level of competition. The Giants badly want to add Bay or Holliday, and the Mariners, Angels and Orioles have some money to add corner bats, as well.

And if the Mets do not get a big bat in free agency, their early read is that players such as Prince Fielder, Adrian Gonzalez and Derek Lee either will be beyond their ability to acquire or not available.

So that could push the Mets to that other side in the internal conflict in which they try to use their dollars to dominate the second-tier free-agent pool. That would put players such as Barajas, Adam LaRoche, Jermaine Dye and Randy Wolf into play.

That would cost about $30 million in total for next season, and enable the Mets to have Murphy and Angel Pagan for backup depth, all while not touching a fragile farm system.