Mets GM Sandy Alderson was on ESPN FM Radio for a brief interview earlier today. Here’s a little recap for you…
Alderson again said he’s looking at his “shortstop situation,” as well as all three outfield positions. Mike Lupica told Alderson that he understands it’s a marathon not a sprint — but it’s starting to feel like a Walking Tour of America. Alderson responded that it was neither of the two, but “maybe an 800.”
When asked about how the fanbase is reacting to the club’s spending and the potential of the payroll actually going down:
“No fan is probably ever going to be satisfied with what his or her team is spending on players. It’s kind of too bad that the measure of commitment, the measure of loyalty to the fan base, is measured in dollar signs. That be as it may, we’re going to spend more money this year than we’ve spent in recent years, just in terms of what we have to spend. You know, last year we only spent about $5 million on free agents (Shaun Marcum and Brandon Lyon). So this is going to be a new day. We have it to spend. We have to spend it wisely. That’s what we’re trying to do.”
In reference to the Mets emulating the Red Sox model, Alderson had this to say:
“Look, I referred to the fact that we spent $5 million on free agents last year. They spent close to $70 million just for last year. I just want to make sure we understand the ‘Red Sox model’ is not inexpensive…In some ways, they were similar to the Mets probably in the sense that they got burned by some big contracts, decided not to go that route, decided to protect their draft picks and ended up signing players with the resources they had in what you might loosely define in the mid-range, but in actuality Stephen Drew [was signed] at $9.5 million …At some point the same thing doesn’t necessarily work over the succeeding period of time and you’ve got to come up with a different concept.”
This interview bothered me, but it’s becoming par for the course with Alderson. I’m slowly growing more and more aggravated with his smug tone. His commentary on the Red Sox model basically reeked of the idea that the Mets aren’t even going to come close to doing that this offseason. And if your only benchmark is spending more than $5 MM this year on free agents… well. That really isn’t much of a big promise to fulfill, even though he’s not exactly a man with a great track record.
And before I let this go, I want to zero in on something he said specifically. “It’s kind of too bad that the measure of commitment, the measure of loyalty to the fan base, is measured in dollar signs.” Excuse me? The measure of commitment is based on creating a god damn winning product. I don’t care if the productive players acquired are being paid $2 million or $12 million, honestly. I want to see this team win again consistently. The front office seems more interested in acquiring bargain players, anyway.
I’m not saying we should just spend for the sake of it — and honestly, I don’t think anybody is anymore. But there are quality players out there (Jhonny Peralta, Jacoby Ellsbury, Masahiro Tanaka, Stephen Drew, Nelson Cruz) that could actually improve the team and all we get are excuses as to why we aren’t signing them. Sorry if I sound bitter, but I get the feeling we’re in for a lot of disappointment in the next few months.