R.A. Dickey increasingly appears destined to remain with the Mets next season, though how long the union will last remains unclear.

Even with the Mets having trade options in hand, a person familiar with the situation said Friday that there is a growing sense that they will pass because the prospective deals aren't good enough to move the reigning Cy Young Award winner. This represents a shift in thinking from the winter meetings, when trading Dickey looked just as likely as retaining him.

But the person said there's no guarantee that staying with the Mets would come with a contract extension past 2013 for Dickey, creating a less-than-ideal situation for both sides. A source with knowledge of the team's thinking insisted, "All options are still open.''

The scenario could change when the free-agent and trade markets break free from a virtual standstill after the winter meetings, as is expected. Any major movement, such as the signing of top free-agent pitcher Zack Greinke, might encourage potential suitors to sweeten their offers for Dickey.

In that case, the Mets again would be faced with a decision. But keeping him could have other consequences.