TV Money, MLB and Spending: The MMO Response

An article by posted on December 2, 2013 0 Comments

Wesley, reader of MetsBlog:

Can you explain on the blog why the Mets aren’t spending the $27 million they’re getting from MLB? If the payroll is the same as last year, where is that money? You should write about payroll more.

Matt Cerrone, Lead Writer of Mets Blog:

It’s a fair question, Wes. I don’t know the actual number, because most teams don’t know their cut yet either…

100 words about the Rockies, then this…

MLB signed new TV deals with ESPN, TBS and FOX, which will give each team an additional $27 million next year, according to a variety of reports.

I do know that Sandy Alderson is working with a significantly smaller budget than Omar Minaya. That much is quite obvious.

Joe D., Owner and Founder of MMO:

Great question, Wes.

The actual TV Deal number is not important, but it’s been very well documented that your figure is not far off and that the Mets’ share in TV revenue – over and above last season – will be between $25-30 million.

A very nice windfall to say the least.

The reason I say it’s not important is that none of it will go toward spending on the payroll and that money will go toward paying down some of the colossal debt that is still owed.

That includes a back-breaking $320 million loan that is due next June.

In fact, that $25-30 million added revenue may come in pretty handy toward refinancing that loan payment and keeping the wolves at bay for two more years if not more.

Yes, Mets blogs should write about payroll more often and that’s why I make it a top priority to address it once a week on MMO, and add anything new I may have learned regarding the state of the Mets payroll.

It’s important to you.

It’s important to me.

It should be important to all Mets fans, because our future depends on it.

The sad reality is that the $18 million dollars cleared from the Jason Bay contract and the $30 million cleared by the Johan Santana contract, has already been reduced to a $25-30 million spending budget for this offseason and not the $48 million everyone expected based on comments made last Summer.

Why the sudden change in plans?

Again, it’s because of an enormous debt and a team that is still not generating a positive cash flow.

The Mets are expected to lose about $20 million in 2013, although nothing official has been announced. So what better way to break even then by cutting that projected loss right off the top of the money freed up by Bay and Santana?

It’s actually a predictable and logical move for the Mets from a fiscal point of view, but not exactly what Met fans want to hear right now, is it? Especially after being asked to be patient for three long and enduring years…

As for why Matt Cerrone felt the need to bring Omar Minaya into his response to you, I’m not sure where he was heading with that and I won’t venture a guess.

I hope I did a good job of addressing your concerns and answering your excellent question.

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About the Author ()

I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73 and '00, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.