The Coming Met-Pocalypse

An article by posted on May 25, 2011

“Even if the financials break down as reported, one would think the $100 million dollars being earmarked for operating costs will go toward the projected $70 million dollars in losses this season, and any additional losses next season. Basically, the way I see it, this will keep them afloat for two years, and that is assuming they don’t lose the lawsuit.  By the end of those two seasons, the Wilpons better have figured out a plan to make the Mets profitable again, otherwise he will find himself back in this same exact situation in 2013. They have to stop the bleeding, or else.

Considering all of that, I don’t see how they won’t slash payroll by half of that $50 million dollars in flexibility they are expected to gain in 2012. That would mean a payroll that may not even top $100 million next season.”

Truer words couldn’t have been spoken Joe D.  In light of the news that Jeffrey Toobin made with his New Yorker article on Monday – far be it from me to assuage our fanbase with the popcorn and candy notion that all will be smelling like roses in short order.  Fault me if you will.  I like to live in the real world instead of the land of make believe. 

A great deal was discussed this past offseason about the level of flexibility Sandy Alderson would have once a few key contracts come off the books.  I being one, figured at least at that point Alderson would be able to either a) sign a younger player if one such option presented itself or b) re-allocate at least a portion of that money into the amateur draft and/or (international) free agent budget. 

Maybe I should have chosen the red pill but the situation the Wilpons have put themselves in is precarious at best – sad and self-destructive to the Met organization at worse.  To think that MLB could theoretically become the de-facto operators of the New York Mets, ala the Expos, the Rangers, and the Dodgers is absolutely embarrassing. 

Even if as Joe D said – “if $65 million comes off with Reyes’ departure and because Francisco Rodriguez doesn’t vest, only about $23 million gets put back in next offseason — with the need for a shortstop and a closer. And that’s not even taking into account raises to other players.” – that leaves very little room for anything substantial at that point to lessen that type of blow to the product on the field. 

No matter how some of us in the blogosphere want to downplay this situation and be the calm cool and collected heads in the room, there’s little sugar coating this monumental financial debacle that in hindsight could have been easily avoided.  As Howard Megdal mentioned in his article for ww.capitalnewyork.com,

“…it shows Wilpon and Katz ignoring advice from prominent investors ( Merrill Lynch & Ivy Asset Mangement and Sterling’s own Arthur Friedman ) that they clearly should have heeded. Fun fact: that Madoff insurance would have cost Fred Wilpon $1.5 million, with a $500,000 deductible, on $500 million of Madoff holdings. Put another way, Wilpon could have insured roughly his entire Madoff portfolio for the amount he’s paying Gary Matthews Jr. through the end of this year for 65 awful plate appearances last year.”

What can you say to defend that?  Perhaps the Wilpons are as dim witted as they claim when asked if they knew about Madoff’s Ponzi scheme.  All I know is we as fans need to enjoy what we have right now.  Enjoy Jose Reyes.  Enjoy Wright.  Enjoy Beltran.  Take a moment to realize that by nit-picking every single fault that Reyes, Wright  and even Beltran have, only takes away from the fleeting time we have to enjoy watching them play (and hopefully helping the team succeed ). 

We seem to be always looking for something better and never quite satisfied, at least some of us fans.  I’m sure if the 80’s greats of Carter, Hernandez and Strawberry were playing today the same cadre of Met fan nit-pickers would point out those players faults to a tee.  Somehow I see Keith Hernandez, if he were on this team today, ripped about by those fans who would say he’s not elite since he’s not a power guy, therefore he MUST be traded.  It’s sillyness and I’m sure those same fans would sit around the water cooler years later and reminisce about the good old days, about the players that the team traded or let go, all to have success elsewhere.  I feel sorry for those fans for they never see what they have in from of them, until it’s too late.

About the Author ()

I'm just your regular Joe. Staff writer @ Metsmerizedonline.com. Happily married and a father to a baby girl. I attended my first Met game at the ripe old age of 3 where my father scored a foul ball and had it signed by Lee Mazzilli, Joe Torre and Joe Pignataro. It was my Holy Grail - 'till I buried it in the backyard. I have my own website where you can read my drivel at your leisure @ www.thespectorsector.net

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