Bank of America Has Been Calling the Shots

A taxi speeds past a Bank of America branch in New York's Times Square

When it was learned last week that the Mets refinancing removed previous covenants that capped the team’s payroll figure and restricted spending, it validated what I believed and posted many times that it’s the banks who have been calling the shots.

Explaining the consequences of that, the dangerous precedent it sets, and the ill-effects it could have on the game, is Kavitha A. Davidson of Bloomberg. She does a much better job of explaining this mess than I ever could.

Let me get this straight: The Mets — a team playing in the country’s largest television market, notorious for its inflated payrolls, in a sport that, unlike others, prides itself on the absence of a salary cap — have been operating under such a cap imposed by a third party? And Major League Baseball let this happen? Why hasn’t there been a public uproar against this?

She’s right. Imagine if more and more third parties took note and implemented the same restrictions on teams in exchange for loans?

Once it spreads, you may have what the MLB Players Association has been fighting for almost 50 years, a salary cap. And one that didn’t require any collective bargaining whatsoever.

Maybe this is why Bud Selig allowed this to fly. He of course being the mastermind in keeping his friends the Wilpons afloat while letting other owners in the same boat drown. Friends in high places.

And finally, closely reiterating what I wrote last night and have been arguing this morning in the comment threads:

But the Mets aren’t a small-market team, and their financial issues are the fault of its ownership. This is a team that, if run properly, would be able to take full advantage of a system that favors its position in the country’s biggest television market, as their crosstown rivals do, and in theory field an expensive, productive squad that would reap postseason rewards. 

Well said, Ms. Davidson, you have my applause. Read the article in its entirety here.

(Photo: Reuters)

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About Joe D 7835 Articles
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, '00 and '15, 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.
  • SRT

    Bottom line, so glad Selig is finally retiring.

    It would have been very interesting to see how -if at all – the Wilpons dug the team’s finances out of the Madoff mess, if Selig had just stayed out of it.

  • Looks like the Moneyball conspiracy theories of the Sandy Haters club are defeated once again and the ones promoting some Sandy philosophy of sound development weren’t too right as well.

    Mets are broke people and that’s the only philosophy they have had. The only goal was to keep ownership intact.

    Can I get a ^^THIS^^ from Miss. SRT?

  • TexasGusCC

    Have to share this comment from the Bloomberg article:

    Super_Hero • 3 days ago −
    What financial relief? Media has been spinning lies that the Mets spent this offseason. All they did was nearly replace the money that came off the books. Nearly meaning not all of it. Their payroll is still lower then last season. Mets still owe Madoff money for the next couple yrs. What financial relief? Every team is getting an extra 25 million because of TV contracts. The Mets are not even spending that money. Mets are still operating like a small market team. What financial relief? Any relief is not going into the team. It’s going towards Wilpon/Madoff.

  • Benny

    Selig is just despicable!

  • Charley’s Twin

    Plenty of us have said so many times…no surprise here. Any chance Metsblog picks this one up?

  • SRT

    Ha!

    So this^.

    It was always about the money – or lack thereof – all along.

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    You wouldn’t have thought from Sandy’s comments the other day – if you fans want us to spend, you’ve got to finance it – that the fiscal leash is really off the pooch.

    I’ve swallowed the idea that these people will lie to us under pressure. What disturbs now is they still seem to think their customers owe them a profitable franchise.

  • Charley’s Twin

    Sandy has done a pretty good job considering the mess the rotten Wilpons left him

  • Keith’s stache

    So refreshing to see MMO post such articles. Glad I migrated.

  • calamityfrancis

    same here.

  • MyasDaddy

    Me three.

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    Cuatro.

  • PeteyPete

    There is only one thing WORSE than the Wilponzis for the interests of baseball in NY and the Mets in particular. And that is…wait for it…Dud Selig. That moron has been a bold-faced stooge of the baseball owners for way way too long. He is everything that is wrong with the game all rolled up into one rotten stinking lying deceitful individual. When Selig is gone and only then, can we ever hope to rid ourselves of the curse that is Mutt and Jeff Wilponzi.

  • Xavier 22

    Yes. This is the kind of objective hard-hitting post that Metsblog used to post before it sold its soul to SNY.

  • MyasDaddy

    It’s sad when we bleed blue and orange, just to have MLB and the Wilpons shove it in our face. We knew the writing on the wall, we ain’t stupid. The fact that MLB has allowed this to happen is disgraceful.

  • Xavier 22

    I think the best thing that could happen to Mets fans is Sandy becomes MLB commissioner after Selig leaves. Sandy has witnessed first-hand the financial shenanigans the Wilpons have undertaken to cling to the Mets. As commissioner he could stop the insanity.

  • jason bay

    This team has been the most poorly run sports franchise in North America and the Wilpon’s are minor league owners who are not qualified to run a Major Sports Franchise.

  • Nolrog

    Selig has gone above and beyond the call of duty in letting the Wilpons continually violate baseball rules so they could hold onto the team.

  • Matt Mosher

    I have said a million times….Bud Selig is the biggest problem MLB has. He’s been there too long.

  • SRT

    I’ve often wondered just how differently this would have all gone down with the Mets (after Madoff’s arrest), if Selig had retired the first time or even second time he announced he was.

    I also believe one of the big reasons Selig didn’t retire before now is because he had too many fingers in way too many pies.

  • metFAN660

    I’m sorry to interrupt the slam-fest, but this is based on a whopper of an assumption. Does anyone know for sure what the BoA imposed cap actually was? Isn’t is possible that it was higher, (maybe even a lot higher), than the $85M that they did spend? I mean, they are trying to rebuild from the ground-up, and spending is one of the lower priorities in the first three years of a rebuild like this.

  • Charley’s Twin

    We’ll see if Selig really retires. He has announced it only to back out a couple of times before

  • bobblehead

    Screw MetsBlog. Amateur hour over there.

  • Nolrog

    I agree. Good stuff here. I feel that the guys here will touch on all subjects and not gloss over (or ignore) things that SNY doesn’t like.

  • bobblehead

    Cerrone?

  • JustSomeInternetGuyYouDontKnow

    If the Mets actually won while under this restriction then Bud would have had his way to try to get a cap. This is just unacceptable whether it’s true or not and the way it looks, it was probably true. This is why Bud had them bring Sandy in, he knew how to penny pinch better than any of the others. Can’t wait until Bud and/or the Wilpons are gone gone gone

  • SRT

    From everything I read recently, there apparently was a cap on payroll expenditures – but no where did I see just exactly what that figure was.

  • bobblehead

    Major League Baseball would be so much better off without Bud Selig and the Wilpon family.

  • jdon48

    Are the mets not also in hock to JP Morgan Chase? What further evidence of ineptitude did the league need. They took the Dodgers away from an idiot. Oh well, fact is, if a bank is calling the shot, it ain’t the bank’s fault. If I lent

    money to a fool, I would want to have a lot to say about where it went. Did Bud Selig co sign for these loans?

  • SRT

    I agree – I won’t believe it either until he really steps down.
    However, there was an article recently with quotes from Selig saying something to the effect of he is absolutely stepping down in Jan ’15 and will not change his mind. I think the same article though they had his wife saying something like: ‘I’ll believe it when I see it.’ lol

    I’m thinking now that ARod has dropped his lawsuits he just might retire this time. Now that there won’t be a trial with any ‘questionable’ MLB tactics coming out that Selig would have to defend, there hopefully should be nothing to stop him now.

  • Zozo

    They been charging us top 5 in ticket prices and spent like a bottom feeders the last 4 years. How the hell do they expect us to buy more tickets first before they spend??? They have put up or shut up before they win us fans back.

  • SRT

    I think JPM holds the loan for SNY that they refinanced last year (or the year before?), if I remember correctly.

    I think this is the same loan that has some $450M due this Nov.

    Selig and MLB secretly (but came out months later) loaned the Wilpons 25M in Nov of ’11 (think it was ’11) that was due in 12 months. The Wilpons defaulted on that loan as well and didn’t pay it back until they got those minority investors in place. Think the payback was overdue by somewhere around 6 months by the time they paid it back.

  • bobblehead

    On point.

  • Scottydoeskno328

    Soooooo, what’s the point here. We have even more insight now on how the Wilpons are not fit to be Met owners..but this still won’t change anything even if this gets media traction right?

    The only way for the Wilpons to be kicked out is by the commissioner and that ain’t happening anytime soon under Selig correct?

    This just gets me even more mad about the Mets situation since there is obviously a problem here with the Mets owners but MLB won’t step in to rectify the situation. It’s ridiculous for a New York market team to be operating akin to the bottom feeders of payrolls. I mean holy crap the Mets payroll last year was only just above the Mariners at 89 million (Seattle 84.2 million). I mean Washington is operating at 112 million, wtf man, I remember them being bottom feeders compared to NY payroll (2009 Nationals 59 million compared to the NYM’s 130 million payroll)

    Why isn’t MLB stepping in? Something is obviously wrong here for us to be overtaken in payroll by teams such as

    Chicago White Sox $124,065,277

    Toronto $118,244,039

    St. Louis $116,702,085

    Washington $112,431,770

    Cincinnati $110,565,728

    Chicago Cubs $104,150,726

    Baltimore $91,793,333

    Milwaukee $91,003,366

    Arizona $90,158,500

    Atlanta $89,288,193

    Freaking Arizona and Milwaukee surpassed us last year…..stop the insanity please MLB. As a NY market team, we should be operating close to the Dodgers and Yankees payroll, over $200 million.

  • metsman

    I don’t understand BoA’s motivation in setting spending restrictions, isn’t the idea to give the Wilpons as much rope as they need to hang themselves with? Why not let them get further in debt, or better yet, default so they can collect massive penalties?

  • VfJ

    You….”like the Wilpons” ?

  • VfJ

    They’re a bank…Banks don’t like defaulted loans…workouts are expensive and time consuming…

  • Dave_in_Spain

    I hope the MLBPA and Boras and other agents read this article.

  • VfJ

    That’s right…Wilponzis could have spent more but didn’t because it would have been bad for the rebuild…

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    So your theory is they were able to spend more but didn’t, because, well, you just don’t spend during a rebuild.
    You’ll have to excuse me, metFAN, but that’s just whacky.

  • metsman

    Financial dealings of this magnitude are beyond my scope, but by that rationale it is conceivable that the Wilpons attempted to secure more money for payroll and were denied which would mean it’s the bank that is failing to acknowledge that it takes money to make money and constructing the loan appropriately. I’m not trying to defend the Wilpons in any way, I’m just curious what someone who understands this more suggests that ownership do to fix this situation…short of selling the team, which is obvious and too good to ever become true.

  • Pedro’s Rooster

    Because they’d get pennies on the dollar when the corporation that took out the loans (Sterling, SNY, Amway, Cougar Life, whatever) declares bankruptcy to avoid repayment obligations.

  • goorru

    I guess this really is moneyball, letting a bank call the shots.

  • SpinalRemains

    This is exactly what most of us have been pissed about.

    Yet we still have fans that accept it. I don’t understand how they can accept 70 wins over and over at these prices. Its amazing really.

  • Pedro’s Rooster

    While we’re often on different sides of these debates, I support your logic fully on this one.

    We absolutely don’t know what the cap was. We’re seeing a certain spend amount, and assuming that is the cap. You could be totally right, and spending less than the cap is one way of increasing chances of short-term profitability.

    Well done, sir.

  • metsman

    Would they declare bankruptcy, or would they just lend them more money so they could keep them afloat in their pocket? I think the Wilpons would sign on for that, their clinging to this franchise seems to know no bounds.

  • VfJ

    Mets generate a certain amount of cash flow which BAC has a right to as a creditor…they have covenants in the loan that forbid the borrower from assuming more debt without their permission as it could weaken the quality of their credit position…
    The bank cares less about the teams success than they do about maintaining the credit quality of their loan…

  • VfJ

    He’s a multi screen name wilponzi shill…pay him no heed…

  • trevordunn

    Selig is an absolute idiot. Good riddance. Hopefully the new commish comes in and wipes jeff and Freddie the hell out of here

  • VfJ

    shameful…part of his tarnished legacy…
    How many HOFs under your regime Bud ?

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    Holy cow, Mr. R, you lost me there.
    I don’t think starving an entertainment business to artificially scrounge a few more one-shot bucks off the bottom line is ever a healthy thing. You’re effectively eating your children to carry on a while longer.
    I don’t see it.

  • Similar to the cap that the bank put on the Mets for spending, the Mets have put a cap on the level of intelligence and critical thinking allowed on Metsblog.

  • metsman

    Isn’t it in the banks best interest to protect/ maintain that cash flow? Could the teams financial officers pitch something like that? I am admittedly out of my depth, but it’s hard to accept that there is no way to fix this predicament if they are really trying.

  • I think the Bloomberg article basing it’s article on a line in the Post that while not denying it’s possible accuracy it saying “The existing loan restricts the team from greatly expanding payroll.” should at least pause to wonder how much is “greatly” to even begin with. It’s conceivable that without more information the Mets never got close to whatever “greatly” was to begin with.

    At least until I know more I can’t draw too much from the comment in the Post as far as how much the Banks restricted the Mets.

  • Captain America

    Now that article states the mets raised 2014 payroll from $85 million to over $90 million.

    Is that correct?

  • VfJ

    Fair to assume that a bank would be more inclined to lend more money to a borrower they feel is a competent manager of a business…You can draw your own conclusion from that statement…
    Absent that banks don’t usually weaken loan covenants when a borrower is distressed if they don’t have to…
    They are protecting THEIR cash flow/credit…

  • Matlack

    What I’m hoping for, though Manfred probably gets the job. I can only imagine what Sandy truly thinks about his boss, Jeffrey the meritorious.

  • metsman

    That makes sense. Could the Wilpons or Katz leverage their other enterprises for operating capital? Is that a reasonable suggestion? You’d think if they believed in the cause and if they suggest that revenue from ticket sales (our money) is what the franchise needs to be successful, they should see it as a worthy and fruitful investment for their own gain.

  • The Wilpons certainly have every right to try to hang onto the team. The banks certainly have every right to protect their loans. That leaves Selig who, as we’ve seen, has the power to force owners out yet chose not to do so.

  • TexasGusCC

    Petey, you don’t think the owners will want another, maybe better stooge?

  • Hodges14

    All the more reason that the Wilpons should have been forced to sell. Unfortunately the commissioner’s office is as corrupt as the Wilpons.

  • metFAN660

    Thanks, Pedro. I love a good debate, especially when the other side knows what it’s talking about. You’re a worthy “opponent,” and I do know that ultimately, we want the same thing…for the Mets to be great again. I have no idea what the cap actually was, but neither does anyone else on here.

  • Macacawitz

    The minute MLB found out that the Wilpons were hamstrung by B of A they should have taken some sort of action. This is outrageous and completely unacceptable.

  • BronxMets

    The Mets are still teetering on the brink of a disaster. They are lucky interest rates are low. The problem is the revenue does not support the infrastructure here. They should never have been allowed to build a new stadium.

  • Hodges14

    At the time they had their illegal ponzi scheme winnings to back up the loans.

  • Hodges14

    Same reason that Picard had to back off on the clawback suit. If the Wilpons went bankrupt he may not have gotten anything,

  • WillisReid

    I wish i lived in the same baseball utopia Mets fans do. There is no salary cap, their is no salary floor. Teams can spend 100% of their revenue to improve the on field product or 0%. Fans can go or fans can stay home.

    They probably should have done what most “good” owners do and force public funding of a new stadium with the threat of relocating. The Wilpon’s suck terribly at winning, but they aren’t cheap.

  • Hodges14

    Since the day of the Madoff bust they have done nothing but lie to the fan base and lose games on the field.. They are a despicable stain on the history of baseball in New York city.

  • The other blog posted about this 9 days ago. When it was actually news.

  • WillisReid

    But at the time, the numbers looked fine. You get a home loan and they check your debt to income ratio before you get the loan. You lose your job 2 months later you still get the loan and keep the house, affordability just become more difficult. Same thing here, just more zeros involved. If make the payments you get to keep it, they don’t come and take it back.

  • Hodges14

    Maybe the Wilpons have something on Selig that he doesn’t want in the public. Who knows?

  • Hodges14

    Sandy’s part of it now. If his morals were offended by the Wilpons business practices or idiot son he should have quit.

  • Hodges14

    Thing is that’s just one of the loans that the Wilpons have coming due over the next few years.

  • BronxMets

    I know and I said it years ago the Mets didn’t make enough money to support all this and I was correct.

  • Benny

    Link?

  • Captain America

    Yet they get approved to develop Willets Point for how many billions?

  • BronxMets

    For the 900TH Time those are separate companies. Everyone thinks you can just move money around different corporations.

  • Martin

    Why would any of this be true? What you are calling a salary cap is not the same as a “budget”

  • skyking26

    As long as Wilpon owns this team thing will never change. SELL, SELL, SELL SELL NOW!!!!

  • DrDooby

    Reports on the actual 2013 payroll have varied greatly.
    It probably depends whether you fully account for all of Jason Bay’s and Johan Santana’s contracts & buyouts in 2013 or direct some of it to 2014. If everything counted towards 2013 that would actually add up to slightly ove 100 million $.

    Counting both buyouts towards 2014, you end up with a 95 million payroll in 2014 as of now – and a 93 million payroll in 2013. If you do account for both buyouts in 2013 but leave out deferred payments to Bay (which shouldn’t be the case as the costs were acrued in 2013 and not in 2014 or 2015h you end up at about 87 million in 2013 and about 95 million in 2014 (including 7.5 million for Jason Bay).

    In any case, it’s a shame that it helps to have some knowledge about (creative) accounting while rooting for your favorite MLB team. And it appears that the Mets will rank in the bottom 3rd of the majors in payroll in 2014, probably about 20th overall. Which obviously seems quite odd for a NY MLB franchise. While the Mets do not need to match the Yankees or Dodgers, they should easily be able to handle a payroll in the 140 to 180 million (depending on where they are in a cycle) in today’s market which equals a 115 to 150 million payroll a couple of years ago(before the extra TV revenue coming in)…

  • Bail4Nails

    Wait, so if I have an account at Bank of America, am I part owner of the Mets? If so, can I call Customer Service and ask for a SS/Leadoff Hitter?

  • Bail4Nails

    Jeff and Freddy are “the new comissioner’s” boss right now.

  • Matt Mosher

    The new one will be an owner’s puppet just like Selig.

  • Matt Mosher

    He hasn’t retired yet either. Keep that in mind.

  • BehindTheBag

    MB headline:
    Mets loan restructuring shows team’s finances are healing

    Actual article headline:
    Mets now have much-needed room for error
    MB is as unbiased as the Drudge Report.

  • actual MB headline:
    NYP: Mets owners on verge of refinancing debt

    The only “news” here is that a Bloomberg article told people they should be outraged. MB is certainly biased. It is A) owned by SNY and B) written by a hopelessly optimistic Mets fan. Since I am also a hopelessly optimistic Mets fan, I read MB every day as well as MMO.

  • BehindTheBag

    This isn’t news…Megdal was talking about this stuff many many months ago.

    So many bad actors in this whole thing. But the bottom line is that the Wilpons should have done the right thing and sold as soon as their paper Madoff accounts went up in smoke. And if they refused to look for buyers, Selig should have forced them to sell like with the McCourts. Instead of letting them siphon off obscene profits in a monopolistic industry to pay down their personal debts (which is by the way exactly what the McCourts tried to do when they wanted to make the quickie TV deal with Fox).

    It’s not show friends, it’s show business…and any cordial relationship Selig had with these clowns should have been out the window the moment they started to damage the game.

  • BehindTheBag

    The Wilpons aren’t cheap, they are broke. They are cheap in the same way a homeless guy is cheap.

    If you can’t see that they are taking a ton of profit out of their operations and using it to keep their business afloat, you’re crazy. And most owners run their sports franchises at a loss, or at best a nominal profit. They get rich when they sell the team. Not by charging ticket prices out of sync with the quality of the product, and by owning a RSN and not using it to fund a better product on the field.

  • Endy10

    yeah but at least the “real” media are starting to take note now.

    this whole thing honestly is like being a wh ore. You just go to your happy place and tell yourself that things will work out, but nothing ever seems to progress

  • Benny

    WTF is that? 0.o

    Only thing in that link is the thread about their “loan restructuring shows team’s finances are healing” and “new loan could end their money problems.”

    Where in any of those links is Cerrone (Metsblog) speaking on behalf of the Banks calling the shots?

  • Benny

    “What you are calling a salary cap is not the same as a “budget””

    What’s the difference?

  • BehindTheBag

    Cerrone is the Baghdad Bob of sports blogging, but if you want to defend him, it’s your call champ.

  • Martin

    if you dont understand what those words mean, then i cannot be bothered to explain them to you. you have a budget right, in your household? do you understand why that is not a salary cap imposed by the league? do you speak english?

  • hmm, it’s telling that you find “presenting facts” as “defending Cerrone”. Perhaps you don’t hate him as much as you thought? Or you hate facts? Your call. Champ.

  • Benny

    It’s a self-imposed salary cap because they can’t go over that budget they set. It’s the same exact thing in this scenario.

    Obviously there isn’t a salary cap in Baseball, but the way the Wilpons are operating, it’s as if there was.

    “do you speak english?”

    Yes, but you clearly don’t know how to write it.

  • huh?

    ‘According to Kosman, the existing loan restricts the team from greatly expanding payroll. However, a source told Kosman, “There are no payroll limits written into the re-worked loan.”’

    and it links to the Post article that this Bloomberg article also references.
    That’s the story. Old loan had payroll limits. New one does not. You’re pissed that MB didn’t tell you to be mad?

  • Benny

    I’m chatting with them right now.

  • Martin

    do you expect that they would have a 500 trillion to spend? again, i just dont think you know what a budget is. do you understand, for example, why the yankees did not sign cano?

  • Benny

    “do you expect that they would have a 500 trillion to spend?”

    Great comparison! Yes, I believe that they should have $500 trillion to spend (rolls eyes).

    “again, i just dont think you know what a budget is.”

    It’s pretty self-explanatory, but okay…

    “do you understand, for example, why the yankees did not sign cano?”

    Yes, because they didn’t like his high price tag. What does that have to do with this? Hopefully you’re not suggesting that the reason they didn’t sign Cano was because of budget restraints, considering they spent more in totality this offseason.

    So explain what is the difference between a self-imposed salary cap and a budget?

  • metsman

    Charging less for tickets isn’t going to help with the whole broke issue; short of selling the team, everything seems like a snake eating its tail.

  • Martin

    So, when cano had a high price tag, and Yankees had no budget restraints, why do they care what he costs?

  • Benny

    No, I’m pissed that they didn’t call a spade a spade. The Banks were and are calling the shots, yet they posted a link to an article about how the new loan will heal the financial restraints of this team. Metsblog will never post something like this stating the obvious.

  • WillisReid

    I don’t think are broke. Showing losses and losing money are not the same thing.

  • Benny

    Do you believe the Yankees are in the business of just giving money away??? WTF??? o.0

    Obviously a team has a say in what they think a player is worth, if they don’t think he’s worth the amount of money he wants, then why would they give in and pay it? You make no sense!

  • Martin

    Again, if they have no self Imposed budget restraints, why wouldn’t they pay whatever he asked? Clearly cano would improve their team.

  • there were payroll limits. We don’t know what they were. That is mentioned in the article. The new loan does not have those restraints. Also in the article. Since the Wilpons don’t have to pay down $250,000,000 this Spring, they are certainly helped by the alleviation of that financial restraint. The only thing missing is someone telling you that you should be mad.

  • Zozo

    Separate companies shouldn’t mean a thing for us, because they are still charging us top dollar for tickets and SNY fees. They cry pauper all the time, then they should reinvest some of their money into the mets instead of worrying about across the street. How do they have money to invest in other projects, and cry to us? They personally made bad investment mistakes and are taking it out on the Mets share of their business. They owe this fan base and they need to step up to the plate and deliver.
    They basically are charging us an arm and a leg so they can invest in other separate businesses? I for one say that BS!!! They should sell the team and go invest all that money wherever the hell they want !!!

  • BronxMets

    Ok i guess then we should just disregard the kaw of the US. Just make it up for us where needed.

  • igotadose

    They’re insolvent. We’ve been over this elsewhere on this site. They’re at risk of bankruptcy too

  • Benny

    Like I said they are not in the business of just giving money away to whoever asks for it.

    Still waiting for your answer on the difference…

  • Benny

    “The only thing missing is someone telling you that you should be mad.”

    So you’re stating that is what this thread is doing? Just telling us to be mad? So there are no details in here that the Metsblog didn’t share? Maybe we can start with the quotes that you obviously overlooked?

    Plus Metsblog didn’t make a thread about it, they conveniently posted a link to an article. They couldn’t expound on this subject? That’s funny because they seem to share their opinion on other subjects, but they conveniently don’t on this subject.

  • WillisReid

    Not the Wilpon’s personally. Sterling equities is probably deep in the red, but I ‘d be surprised if they sold, willingly or otherwise.

  • igotadose

    have a look at the ‘lies, damned lies’ article from Bob Walsh. There’s an interesting discussion about the LA Dodgers and how their criminal owner was forced to sell. It could happen in NY, just takes the will.

    The media picking this up and running with it to the embarrassment of MLB is a GOOD THING for getting the Wilpons to sell. Wilpons are proven liars. We need to beat that drum here and with all our met fan friends and anyone in the media we know. This is the essence of activism – you have to keep at it all the time. We need to spread the word.

    The Bloomberg article picked up exactly what Bob and I discussed in the other thread. Everything about the Mets is bad for the team and to some degree, for baseball. Fans don’t want salary caps (well, fans of wealthy teams don’t 🙂 ) and this is a step in that direction

  • SpinalRemains

    I think the difference is that salary cap implies that all teams in the league are affected, whereas with a budget only the team in question is affected.

  • goorru

    No Lawyer for a bank would be so vague as to say the team couldn’t greatly expand payroll. There WAS an exact payroll limit set by Bank of America.

  • and the Wilpons, BoA and their lawyers know what that limit was. We do not.

  • Benny

    We are speaking of a self-imposed salary cap, which is the very exact same thing as a budget set by oneself. There is absolutely no difference!

  • SpinalRemains

    A poster here actually responded to me with “would you rather have wins or spending?”

    If that’s not brainwashing then I don’t know what is. Its unreal at this point. Its one thing to be forced as fans to take it in the pail, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to smile about it, let alone request it season after season!

  • there are 177 comments on that MB thread you say does not exist. What new details has this post shared? Again, you’re upset that Metsblog didn’t editorialize the news and tell you to be outraged.

    By the way, there are 2 posts on this topic on that single page I linked for you.

  • Benny

    You sent me a link of a link posted on metsblog. What thread are you speaking of? Maybe you should learn how to post a link of the actual thread.

  • Matlack

    You’re right, he is part of it, but the decision to install him as GM was made at a higher pay grade than Jeff. I’m sure the Marine and Harvard Law grad doesn’t sweat the likes of Tommy Boy.

  • goorru

    Metsblog barley even mentioned it. The fact that a baseball team had a budget set by a bank is ridiculous and should be the story here.

    Michael Baron admitted to me that it should have been the headlines not a one sentence blurb buried in the story. This is spin 101.

  • Biggle Boy

    Going forward, even if there is no bank-imposed cap on payroll, will there be a Sterling Equities-imposed one? Because if they anticipate that 2014 revenue will be less than what’s needed for a loan due in 2015, of $450M that’s now swelled to $600M, will they increase payroll for next year?

  • I posted you a link to the MB page. I thought you’d be able to handle it from there. A bit of scrolling is all it took. My mistake. I am pretty new to posting here and don’t have a handle on everyone’s inadequacies.

    http://metsblog.com/metsblog/nyp-mets-owners-on-verge-of-refinancing-debt/

    Hopefully that is enough for you to overcome your difficulties in doing really simple stuff.

  • the re-fi is mentioned twice on the page I linked. Once it talks about the payroll restrictions imposed by the previous loan vs the new one and then about how this gives the Wilpon’s more wiggle room to spend. Both true. Metsblog always puts their spin on it and certainly temper their posts. But there is no new information on this story so whining that Metsblog isn’t talking about it 10 days after it happened is silly.

  • Benny

    Usually when someone asks for a link to said thread the person was speaking of, you’d receive a direct link to said thread. Not too difficult to understand at least in my opinion, plus it’s pretty much common sense, especially when you notice that the thread we are speaking on and the thread you are comparing it to are nothing alike, but I guess you must lack common sense, which is okay, I’ve heard of your kind and the inabilities you and the others were handed. It’s rather sad really…

  • igotadose

    But, the Wilpon’s denied there was one. So the main point is that they lied, and they’re insolvent – you don’t go into such hock if you can afford to run your business.

  • Benny

    So like I said before, the writers on that site didn’t even bother to share their opinion on the subject.

  • and like I said before, you’re mad that they didnt tell you to be mad.

  • Benny

    Nope wrong, considering that’s what you got from my comments and this thread is baffling. It’s okay though, you obviously lack some intellect, so now I know your excuse…

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    Bronx, I think what he’s suggesting is that the Wilpons recapitalize the franchise with personal funds. As opposed to simply x’fering from one corp. to another, which of course you can’t do.

  • you are crying about their lack of editorializing. The fact that they linked to all the relevant information wasn’t enough. You needed to be told how to feel about that information. Great, Benny. I’m the one with the intellectual deficit.

  • GB

    I think the fact they kept telling the fans that they are fine and charging ludicrous ticket prices is the real issue. They LIED to the fans. Nobody knew until this recent article that they had a bank telling them what they can spend. They never said this ONCE. They don’t call up rookies until May to save another year or arbitration (do you see the Cardinals doing this? …No, because they try to win and not save money). They say they will spend this year and they haven’t spent anything. They replaced the other salaries that are off the books and still have not spent the 30 million in TV money. By the way, when has Sandy been the GM of a winning team (not counting a steroid team)? Why the hell is he considered such a genius? I used to be a season ticket holder but have not gone to 1 game in the last 3 years and won’t until we get an owner that will spend to put a quality product on the field each year for the fans.

  • Benny

    “you are crying about their lack of editorializing.”

    Considering they usually share their opinion on every thread, and it just so happens that they conveniently didn’t do it for this one raises eyebrows, but after learning your excuse, I now know why this seems to fly right over your head.

  • Taskmaster4450

    Thank Uncle Bud and obeying his edict to not go over slot all those years.

    Fred’s chummy relationship there paid him dividends.

  • Hodges14

    Everyone knew they were lying. They’ve been caught in lies on multiple occasions going back to when the Madoff bust occurred and they told everyone that none of the Mets money was in Madoff accounts. We later found out that that was just not true.

    As far as Alderson goes, consider for a moment that he wasn’t brought to the Mets to win on the field. He was brought here to gut the payroll and lie about it to the fan base. Are you going to be surprised if a year from now you find out that one of the Mets creditors insisted that Alderson be hired as the GM?

  • Taskmaster4450

    He most likely wont get it…there are others who are in line ahead of him.

  • Hodges14

    He’s right. Megdal has been on this for a while now.

  • Hodges14

    I think you nailed it. Years of blindly following Selig’s wishes, many times hurting the Mets chances to win in the process, were payed off when Selig let the Wilpons keep the franchise.

  • Taskmaster4450

    Have you ever negotiated with a banker. They have a limited mindset and are set in the ways the operate. To them it is all numbers and ratios. It is that simple.

  • Hodges14

    I have to admire your consistency. Even as the wall of lies crumbles around you, you seem to still believe everything the Wilpons have said.

  • GB

    I just hope that people stop going and paying these ridiculous prices until they sell. I would love to see Mark Cuban buy the team. They will never sell as long as people keep going to see a 75 win team year after year

  • Hodges14

    That’s fine, but the lies, deceit and poor performance are on Alderson now. He’s in it eyeballs deep.

  • Hodges14

    The people have already stopped going. Their tickets sold has dropped 50% from 2008 – 2013.

  • SpinalRemains

    A budget is something which can be altered or ‘bent’. Budgets have flexibility. A salary cap does not. A salary cap is a finite figure which doesn’t move, flex or compromise.

    The differences are small, but I think I understand where he was coming from.

    In this instance we’re talking about the cap being put in place by an entity separate from ownership or MLB. That’s the major difference. A budget is a figure put in place by the owner. A ballpark figure which they do no want to spend beyond. The bank is putting a brick wall in place. There is definitely a difference.

  • Hodges14

    I vote for the Wilpons being forced to sell all shares of the franchise and being banned from MLB for life. Mets fans have suffered enough with these dirtbags.

  • GB

    They still got 26,000 last year…I want it to drop another 50%

  • Hodges14

    4.2 million tickets sold, down to 2.1 million tickets sold. Also, consider there were far far fewer than 2.1 million people actually attending games. Those no-shows cost the Wilpons big time in parking, food, concession money.

  • Benny

    ” Budgets have flexibility.”

    There is no set rule that a budget has flexibility. It depends on the person setting said budget.

  • well, that’s not the case at all but whatever man. 10 posts on that page I linked. 2 have commentary. In any case, fact remains, you are complaining that someone just presented a story with 2 angles to it without telling you how to feel about it.

  • Benny

    I must’ve missed where MMO told me how to feel. Plus MMO has the Bloomberg article, while Metsblog doesn’t.

    Last week MMO made that same thread announcing the refinancing the Wilpons did. This is a follow-up explaining exactly who has been in the driver’s seat this whole time. Sorry that it’s hard for you to understand this, maybe you can try reading it slowly. I heard that can make a difference…

  • Captain America

    I wonder what the generally accepted accounting principles are for accounting for MLB compensation?

  • Martin

    THats the point there is no difference. Having a budget means not signing anyone who asks. The Yankees have a budget, and so do the mets. And so does everyone and every organization on earth.

  • Good Lord dude – the news story WAS that banks had a limit on what the team could spend and that this new loan has no such requirements. Those were the facts. Nothing new has come out of that story. That’s all. This new article is talking about how this is an outrage – it doesn’t provide any new details, no info on what the cap actually was… it’s an editorial. You are pissed that MB didn’t post an editorial. Why?

  • Benny

    The Yankees have a budget on what they think a player may be worth, while the Mets have a budget on team payroll. Yes, it’s definitely the same thing (rolls eyes).

  • Benny

    Because Metsblog would never post something like this! Did you forget what the original comment was about? It was literally about Metsblog not having the cojones to post something like this, and you stated they did (obviously false). How slow can you be?

  • still screaming that Metsblog doesn’t post editorials yet blissfully unaware that this proves my point each and every time. You want to be told what to think. Having the facts isn’t enough. The fact that MB posted about the story and linked to an article about it which presented all the facts that we know now, 10 days later, wasn’t enough. You need someone else to post something which explains to you how you should feel. See, I read both MB and MMO because I like different sources for information. I also read commentary to see what other people are saying. I don’t get angry when I am only given the facts though because I am capable of making up my own mind because I’m a big boy.

  • Martin

    So you are claiming the Yankees have no budget for payroll, it is just infinite?

  • Benny

    Are you really this dense? The only reason I replied to you the first time was because I knew that there was no way Metsblog posted this like you stated, and guess what I was right. Now you’re stating that I need to be told how to feel, yet this thread did no such thing. You’re so willfully blind it’s mind-numbing. I will repeat again, no where in this thread did it tell me or anyone else for that matter how to feel.

  • Benny

    No, I’m not claiming that. The evidence speaks for itself! How much is their payroll?

  • Metsblog did post the story. Referenced the re-fi twice on one page, as I said. They posted the objective facts of the matter. They didn’t post this Bloomberg editorial that you are so terribly hung up on. Weird, for someone who doesn’t need to be told what to think.

  • Martin

    Not enough to sign the best 2b in the game. Must have a cap, because they definitely wanted to keep cano.

  • Hodges14

    They spent more on Ellsbury and Tanaka than Cano would have gotten. Perhaps they just didn’t think Cano was worth what he was asking.

  • Hodges14

    So then they have no excuse for the disgraceful team they have fielded for the last 5 years?

  • Benny

    Yes, they did, but at their price, not his!

  • Benny

    Holy Crap!

    Let’s go over this again and try to read slowly this time:

    Original commenter states that Metsblog would never post something like this, you have gone on to recognize this piece as different from Metsblog’s piece, and have called it an article “that talks about how this is an outrage.” The link you sent me is about the refinance they made, so no they did not and will not post something like this.

  • Jack

    This is wishful thinking but do you think that the new commissioner could force the Wilpons to sell if the new commissioner isn’t friends with the Wilpons?

  • jason bay

    Alderson was hired to both.

    Right the Franchise financially AND get us some players for the future.

    To that end Beltran wasn’t sold for salary relief as so many have in the past. Dickey was a gate attraction looking for a team friendly deal in a payroll neutral deal for 2013 with the inclusion of Buck into the deal. If Alderson was just looking for salary relief he wouldn’t have gotten Syndergaard in the deal.

    Then there is offering Feliciano arbitration which is directly in conflict with previous practices and cost the Franchise 1 M for Fulmer and IFA’s Garcia (750 K) Rosario (1.75 M) and the overall increase in draft spending.

    If it were only about saving money these moves would have been totally different. Beltran would have been traded to save all his salary for a DH or something, Dickey re-signed, no TDA or Syndergaard, no Fulmer, no Garcia, Rosario ect, no over slot on later round picks Flexen, Whalen, Evans or Marquez, ect and so forth.

  • MyasDaddy

    I think under the circumstances in which Sandy had to work with, I think he has done an OK job. We really won’t know until a couple years from now, but everyone who wasn’t blind realized that Sandy had no power whatsoever and he was working with a minimal budget. Now, after hearing this news… it’s even worse than originally anticipated.

  • Hitmanᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ ✔

    Might as well wait until there’s a new commissioner.

  • Benny

    I’ve been trying to explain that to this guy, but he just doesn’t get it…

  • Taskmaster4450

    Not likely. In fact, at this time, might not have the grounds to do it. The Mets seem to have their financial house somewhat in order at least from a balance sheet standpoint. Also the income statement looks better with only a $10M loss.

    The time to force them to sell was when the Madoff scandal broke or when they defaulted on MLB’s loan.

  • SRT

    I don’t think many fans are surprised the Wilpons lied about the Mets finances. There was just way too much being published not to connect the dots on that. What annoys me is they really thought the average Met fan was going to believe their fairy tales.

    As far as not calling up rookies until May or mid season – the Mets aren’t the only team that does that. In fact more do that than not – especially if it’s a top prospect they anticipate trying to hold onto for several years.

  • Martin

    Right because they have a budget dictated by their finances. Like he mets and very other team.

  • Martin

    Correct because they have a limited budget like the mets.

  • LIKayLGM

    No wonder BOA had to sell my mortgage to M&T Bank, how could they finance my mortgage and the Wilpons – lolol

  • SRT

    hahaha

  • Benny

    No, because they have a right to dictate how much a player is worth, and expressing that right, doesn’t mean they’re under a budget.

  • Benny

    Let’s try it another way as well, just in case you didn’t get it the last time:

    Does the Metsblog thread have an “outrage” or the Bloomberg article on it? No.

    Does the MMO thread have these things? Yes.

    Original Commenter: “So refreshing to see MMO post such articles.”

    You: “The other blog posted about this 9 days ago.”

    Link you posted only displayed the refinancing, nothing on the Bloomberg article or showing an outrage on what was allowed by Selig and the MLB.

    So in conclusion, You = Wrong

  • Martin

    So they have no budget they could spend a trillion on cano, they just choose not to, even though he could improve the team. Understood.

  • BronxMets

    I know and what I am saying is you just cant do that when you want. There is about 15 other owners of the NY Mets there are multiple owners of SNY the building I have no clue. You just cant move money out and in like you want to.

  • ColoradoMetsFan

    The concern with Bud stepping down is that we get more of the same, only worse. Once upon a time, the commissioner’s office at least gave lip service to operating in the game’s best interest. No such decorum nowadays…

  • Pike Miazza

    I don’t think its a coincidence that Selig knew that at this point there was no stalling the refinancing move any longer and that something like this article would reveal the inference to a wider degree about how much Bud had/has been doing for his friend irregardless of the consequences. His retirement probably precedes what would have been an embarrassment to that office & maybe his removal.

  • Matt Mosher

    Exactly. People need to wake up. Fans have ALREADY STOPPED GOING. Look at the attendance figures for chrissake.

  • Jack

    Aw bummer

  • Matt Mosher

    Yeah….but he’s blackballed so no one pays him any attention. Even though he’s usually right on the spot.

  • Benny

    Now you’re getting somewhere!

    Which is made evident by the Ellsbury, McCann, Beltran, and Tanaka signings…

  • Hotstreak

    It not the process that was wrong but the PR of lies in doing it. Call it BA_GATE. The team was hijacked by BA and the owners and Mets try to pocket off us stealing any chance of being competitive. They call have easily said why they were dismantling the ENTIRE team and promise, ready for the “R” word, REBUILD. They would have gotten many more blue chip prospects who would be ready now.

    Again a cover up. They had no business extending DW at the expense of being neither here nor there that is contending or rebuilding.

    With the public if your honest you will get some slack. Sure some would not renew season tickets. But if you turn off a base of fans by again they enter a casino hoping to win when it was a marked deck to lose.

    The Wilpons should have been outed as owners in the first place and cronyism prevailed.

  • and why is this so important for you? Lemme guess – it’s because you need to be told what to think?

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    Not that it would ever happen in a million years, but if Jeff, say, decided to take $10M out of his allowance money and used it to capitalize the franchise, with no stock considerations, I can’t see any of the other owners objecting.

  • BronxMets

    if jeff wilpon would put 10M of his money into the team and not look for the ownership to be adjusted he is a bigger moron then I think he is. anyway that is a poor example what would 10m do ?

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    Oh, I agree it’s ridiculous. I think the poster up top was suggesting it, though. Maybe I should tell him to make it $1B.

  • Mike Lloyd

    If this is true, how can the Players’Association and it’s union not be seeking legal remedy? This is a Singular act of Collusion. Yes Collusion. 1 team Colluding and Conspiring with the official head of MLB to keep a self imposed salary cap limit so as to keep the present ownership in place and in turn, whether intentional or not, keep salaries from escalating on a higher percentage across the league. This essentially is only 1 variable/component. The 3rd party in question (BOA) essentially were involved in player personnel decision making…this is beyond dangerous to the open market. In other words, if 6-8 team’s
    experience an economic downturn
    in any one season, the Commissioner can either use MLB loans or Collude with those 6-8 to artificially depress salaries? That’s 20-25% of teams. If the player union doesn’t see the danger in that (because lowering or stagnating salaries affects the arbi #’s etc.) Then they are totally blind or been emaciated for some reason I’m Even as shocked to recognize the ramifications and dangerous precedent set

  • BronxMets

    the only reason you would dump more cash into the team is if you are paying down debt in order to reduce ongoing expenses. otherwise its stupid. its money in money out. all the other owners would benefit if whatever you put the money in worked.

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    Agreed.

  • Pedro’s Rooster

    That’s the unanswerable question. Lend them more money, sell the loan to another institution, push out the due date…all options.

    I imagine that they’ll do whatever they can in hopes of getting full repayment. Just a matter of far the credit lines extend. I’m sure we’ll find out. 🙂

  • Pedro’s Rooster

    I think that it’s a way to force profitability, and also show they’re credit-worthy. It’s the Houston Astros model.

    I think the plan is to worm their way into the black, stave off creditors, and hope that the pipeline of talent pays off (soon), and then make a mint with a playoff spot in 2015 or 2016 (because of a bargain-basement payroll and TV $$$ rolling in).

    metFan660 also mentioned a key tenet above, which is not to spend before you’re truly ready to compete.

  • We first posted the Post article a day before metsblog just so you know. It was undiluted. We have 600 comments to prove it.

  • Benny

    Why is what important to me?

  • EzRider

    I just quickly skimmed through and realized i can’t afford a new computer at this time so i’ll read no further.

  • I saw it then too, Joe D. Please don’t take this as a dig at the work you guys do. This is the better Mets blog precisely because you guys have to answer to no one but the fans and yourself. That said, the constant “Metsblog sucks” that litters the posts on MMO is getting really old. It’s as if half the people come here to talk about how MMO is better than MB. It is but give it a friggin rest already. I have no affiliation with MB. I just appreciate what they do over there but I take it for what it is. MB posts things critical of the Mets and their management. It’s almost as if they’ve become these cartoonish villains in Mets fandom. It really isn’t that bad. Anyway, keep up the outstanding work.

  • skyking26

    Salary cap is your capped and can’t spend anything over that and a budget is what you set for yourself and you can adjust. There is a difference.

  • Benny

    There’s a difference between a self-imposed salary cap (which is what I’m talking about) and a salary cap.

  • I’ve never once said Metsblog sucks or condemned the outstanding work of Matt and Michael who I consider friends.

    I can’t control what is said in their comments or mine. It is a free exchange of opinion by you the fans – uncensored and unedited.

    Thanks for commenting and the kind words.

    By the way, I comment there all the time and my last comment the other day was to tell them they did a fine job on a couple of posts.

  • again, not directed at you man. My original comment here was in response to such a poster. I didn’t mean to imply you guys didn’t report on it when it was in the news, merely that they did at the time as well. I like the fact that you guys get in the threads and mix it up and really do appreciate the effort and the insights you guys present. Also never meant to imply that you joined in or even agreed with such sentiments. You obviously shouldn’t censor what is said here. I am just responding to what someone else said.

  • VfJ

    As Bob Walsh catalogued in his excellent post…
    Lies, Lies and More Damned Lies
    “It’s all in the rearview mirror,” Wilpon said about past financial woes last year as the 2013 spring training started, “The family is in great shape. The family really is in great shape. There’s no one in my family — there’s the Katz family, the Wilpon family, kids has any personal bank debt. Zero. Everything has been paid. We don’t owe a dollar to anybody. We have mortgages on buildings and stuff like that, but we don’t owe a dollar.”

    To answer your question it appears that if Mets fans want a bigger payroll then they are going to have to put their money up front and trust the wilponzis to spend it later…
    WOW…that is chutzpah !

  • Martin

    But they couldn’t fit cano under their self imposed cap. Also known As a budget.

  • bobblehead

    You’re trolling, plain and simple. You likely are a friend of MetsBlog, and that’s fine. Why so ashamed to admit it? Bobble bobble.

  • Worst troll evar

  • Benny

    There is a difference between not being able to and not wanting to.

  • Jack

    I just wish Selig did what was right and force the Wilpons to sell for the fan base but I guess it is what it is.

  • El_Verdadero_Presidente

    That’s actually a tight little blueprint for somebody who’s desperate.

    I’ll tell you, though – when I was starting out on my own, little one-time tricks like shaving expenses to puff up the balance sheet wouldn’t have fooled the banks for 5 minutes. Those vampires had seen it all.

  • mr. belvedere

    I hate the Wilpons for ruining and torturing me throughout my life but other than not resigning Jose, these financial trouble have facilitated what needed to be done, prior to 2011 we had too many HORRIBLE contracts that weren’t producing and more importantly our farm, player development and scouting were in complete shambles from over a decade of neglect…this has now somewhat been repaired and it has forced the team to slow down prospects and build from within…I wish the wilpons would have been forced to sell but obviously that wasn’t going to happen

  • The worst part about this for me, is that Mets fans have accepted the silly narrative…oh but we’re not the Yankees. When it comes to history and tradition…no one is the Yankees. But when it comes to market, owning our own network, and ability to earn when the product is good…we can compete there, we just choose not to or are incapable to. No matter what side you fall on with that last statement…it should be unacceptable.

  • jason bay

    Well the Wilpon’s aren’t qualified to be Major League owners Hotstreak. We know that. I give them that they tried but it wasn’t their priority. Selling tickets through the big names they brought in here at their most expensive cost and on their last legs has resulted in seen us finish with more losing seasons than winning ones since they became sole owners (8-4)

    I give them that they tried to put a good team out there but all they want to do is take shortcuts instead of doing it right until there was no other alternative and even then…..they couldn’t afford to whether the storm that a full blown rebuild would bring in.

    Selling draft picks for DH’s and cash? Throwing ****fits over players surgeries being reported in the news? Offering arbitration only to two players from 2002 – 2010 (Bradford and Perez). Being self serving staunch advocates of not going over slot? Getting our AAA affiliate kicked out of Norfolk, New Orkeans and Buffalo? Shuttering the GCL team for a year? Making promises to players to not offer arbitration in order to assist them in getting better FA contracts elsewhere at the expense of two first round draft choices? A guy they had already paid 44 M to who had a 16.66 ERA in the NLCS and already cost us a first rounder to obtain? Trading players exclusively for salary relief? Skimping on international free agency? Choosing GM’s with little to no experience?

    I don’t dislike these guys or wish any harm on them but they are clueless and unqualified to run a Major sports franchise.

  • Hotstreak

    Why do I feel the Wilpons are owners of a home (real estate) that has a sink hole and Alderson is there RE agent showing the property without mentioning the damaged goods. Then after the property is dismantled when the sink hole gets too big he takes credit for rebuilding even though the house is still not habitable. By the way the inspector Bud signed off on all the inspections. He says the Buyer should have seen it coming and a salesman is allowed to pitch curves at the fans. Now that the property is almost ready would you buy it, live in it and pay RE taxes (buy concessions and Mets paraphernalia)

  • jason bay

    LOL,

    I just don’t get why anyone includes Alderson in this. He has kept the winning percentage the same as the prior regime’s last two years even though they had Santana pitching and he just had him clogging up payroll and roster space not to mention Perez, Castillo and Bay.

    The team went broke before he got here and he was restricted in raising payroll and had to slash it 33% while getting no help to speak of from the farm.

    Impossible situation to thrive in but now people are complaining that he didn’t announce to the World that the Mets couldn’t take on salary.

    Please fill me in on how announcing that to everyone would have been a competitive advantage?

  • Hotstreak

    Has anyone audited the tax returns of the Wilpons and Sterlring Enterprises. If Louis Lerner could have done it we would know a lot more. You would think if Picard followed through with the suit (no not Arod) we then would see MADoff money moving around more than Heath Bell did.

  • Hotstreak

    Honesty in the long run is the best policy. Nothing stopped SA from slashing payroll even further with no DW extention: Trade Reyes and DW for more blue chip prospects. Don’t say your competitive admit the true circumstances. Make lemon-aide out of a lemon and gut the team completely and say banks forced him to but future in three years will reap the benefit. Reduce season ticket prices and have more promotions.

  • VfJ

    Sadly that didn’t happen…

    so on we go Mets fans…

    50+ years of mediocrity pierced by 4 years of satisfaction…

    and if we should ever not get no…

    we will share w wilponzis…

    SWEET…

  • Just_Da_damaja

    prior to 2011, we signed one bad contract in Jason bay.

    the contracts were “disasters” b/c our owners could not field a winning team around them and bungled up injuries that occur everyday.

    For example, Beltran’s microscopic knee bruise grew 3x in size in 60 days b/c ownership gave him a cortisone shot and a band-aid. rather than rest and allowing the bruise to heal.

    prior to that injury , Beltran had only a strained quad once in 2005.

    And since, Beltran has played more games than David Wright, Ike Davis, Ruben Tejada, Jose Reyes, Travis D’anard and a slew of other young mets…

    Ollie Perez signed a 3 year / 36 mil deal.

    thats not a “disastrous” deal for a team that can handle its finances.

    The Red Sox signed Julio Lugo and a slew of players to BAD contracts.

  • Just_Da_damaja

    but enough to sign the best available OF, the best available SP, the best available C, the 2nd best available RF.

    at a time when they did not know if they were going to be paying A-Rod 30 mil next year.

    other than that, thats the same thing as us spending on Granderson ( a player the Yanks no longer wanted ), Colon ( a player that no other team put a bid in for ) and Chris Young.

    Mind you, Young, a Houston native, all but begged Houston for a contract, 10 days before we signed him.

    No offer was made, we scooped him and gave him 7.5 mil to be a 4th OF

    Now compare that with the Yanks who outbid 5 teams for Beltran’s services.

  • Just_Da_damaja

    remind me which BANK told them they could not spend that money on Cano…

  • Just_Da_damaja

    Incorrect, as the Mets have a BANK telling them who they can/cant sign.

  • vigouge

    Except that cash flow for a major league team is fairly inelastic. The only elasticity from year to year is attendance and parking but that’s a small part of revenue.

  • vigouge

    If this is true, how can the Players’Association and it’s union not be
    seeking legal remedy? This is a Singular act of Collusion. Yes
    Collusion. 1 team Colluding and Conspiring with the official head of MLB
    to keep a self imposed salary cap limit so as to keep the present
    ownership in place and in turn, whether intentional or not, keep
    salaries from escalating on a higher percentage across the league.

    This isn’t collusion. What you mistake for a salary cap limit is called a budget and it’s how nearly every team operates. You act as if there was some evil done and that the Wilpons were embezzling money from the team. That’s not the case, they have made poor financial decisions but the debt is because of investment in the team and investment in the stadium. Only when revenue from a source disappeared did the lower budget come into play.

    The 3rd party in question (BOA) essentially were involved in player
    personnel decision making…this is beyond dangerous to the open market.
    In other words, if 6-8 team’s
    experience an economic downturn
    in any one season, the Commissioner can either use MLB loans or Collude with those 6-8 to artificially depress salaries?

    Again this is not artificially depressing salaries. As long as the budget is determined by the revenue stream it’s not artificial. Plus it’s kind of silly to complain about an artificial depression in salary coming off about two decades of artificially high salary’s.

    If the player union doesn’t see the danger in that (because lowering or stagnating salaries affects the arbi #’s etc.) Then they are totally blind or been emaciated for some reason I’m Even as shocked to recognize the ramifications and dangerous precedent set

    What makes you think you’re smarter than the Players Union? They’ve done a fairly good job protecting themselves the past few decades. They’re not going to freak out about some extreme hypothetical that hasn’t even remotely come close to occurring and isn’t collusion in the first place.

  • Hodges14

    Major League Baseball is not a salary cap league. You don’t need to cripple your franchise for 1/2 a decade because you signed a couple of bad contracts.

  • Martin

    And yet they can’t afford to keep the best 2b in the game because of financial constraints.

  • Martin

    And similarly, no bank told the mets anything, that’s why the story is not t picked up by the papers. No quotes, no sources, not even specific language. You have to learn to resist being manipulated by the media. You need to pay attention to quotes and sources.

  • Martin

    Because it isn’t true. And even if it was, it’s not wrong to operate with a budget.

  • Martin

    They were not lying. The team is fine. They are signing players and in no danger of selling the team.

  • mr. belvedere

    there was many more bad contracts than Bay’s and Beltran’s was not one of them…Beltran is a blue chipper signed in his prime, those are the guys you want to over pay for…there’s a laundry list of horrible contracts signed by the Wilpons…but that’s why I mentioned that and also “more importantly” the lack of developing players was neglected as well…Obviously the financial problems is not the way I wanted the Mets to be forced to start concentrating on this, it should always be a priority,

  • Martin

    No they don’t. There is no reliable evidence for this.

  • jason bay

    Nice try but it was a hell of lot more than one bad contract. Your talking about a team that had such a small window in which to win

    Alou getting hurt two years in a row in seasons in which we lost the post season by two games was a good contract. Castillo was a good contract? Perez? Schoenweiss? I mean get real. Tons of bad contracts. Cora, Wagner and his 16.66 ERA in the NLCS, Mota, K Rod……Santana was a good contract for him, not so good for the next guy and at least Lugo was tradeable unlike Castillo, Santana, Perez and Bay.

    The biggest difference between the Mets and Red Sox though is they had some replacements for their FA busts come up from the farm while we’re still waiting.

  • SRT

    It isn’t true?

    Not sure how you interpret:

    ‘There are no payroll limits written into the re-worked loan.
    The existing loan restricts the team from greatly expanding payroll.’
    – As reported by Josh Kosman of the Post

    Nothing wrong with a budget, as long as that budget is put in place by the owners, not a third party.

  • Martin

    In what sense does it restrict payroll? Is it written into the loan, or does it informally restrict payroll like any big contract? Isn’t it just another part of the team budget?

  • alan friedman

    Joe D,

    Thanks for giving us this information which confirms so many things I have preached these past few years. Maybe now, some of the folks here will finally understand that it is the Wilpon’s financial troubles that created this whole mess that we as fans have suffered through. When you take into account that ownership was overextended with the ballpark (Fred’s Folly), the network SNY and then have the Madoff disaster hit them,….what else could have transpired? I contend that the Wilpon’s knew what was coming down the pike with the scandal and that they pocketed lots of money from the Ponzi scheme as they were initial investors but eventually they got screwed too!
    Let’s face it, Fred Wilpon is a master schemer himself and the reason he wants to keep the team is his dream of being financially involved with the hotel and convention center that will rise from the junkyards that are being eliminated as part of the rehabilitation of the neighborhood. The fact that Bud Selig found a way to help Fred Wilpon keep the team further proves that the team’s mode of operation these last number of years was simply to hang on till the financial crunch would ease up and that Sandy Alderson was hired as the executioner to slash payroll immediately and salvage whatever possible in terms of the on the field product. I doubt that Sandy was hired based upon his past team’s won/ lost records but more so because he had loads of experience working for owners in small markets with limited budgets! The smoke being blown at us did not fool me or anyone with a sense of reality. There is no way for the GM on behalf of ownership to come out and say that you fans will have to suffer with lousy baseball for 4-5 years because ownership screwed up royally. As fans, progress in improving the team has been slow and impeded by the financial restrictions placed upon ownership and by players who have not performed to their expectations……It is getting better for sure but unless all of our question mark players come through and deliver…the process is going to need
    some more time.

    I really don’t think that what has happened here will create a salary cap for baseball. The players union still holds most of the cards in labor relations. The luxury tax that big market teams have to deal with is about all the system will tolerate at this point in time.

  • SRT

    The point I was trying to make is the team budget should be set by the owners – not be a third party. The way I’m interpreting what I’m reading is BOA set payroll limits when they allowed refinancing the last time – as a condition of that refinancing.

    I have no idea ‘in what sense it restricts payroll’. I’m reading the same comment(s) you are, namely:
    ‘The existing loan restricts the team from greatly expanding payroll.’

  • Martin

    It makes a difference if the the owners realize they are I debt and the loan is of the many concerns when concocting a payroll budget, or if execs at the bank are giving the thumbs down to shin soo choo.

    Unless we know what is happening, we are commenting from ignorance.

  • jason bay

    What business tells their customers and competitors that their financial picture is so bleak that they are not even in control of determining their own budget Hotstreak?

    Who coined the phrase that you can’t rebuild in New York?

    How much lower would the attendance have been had Reyes been traded before the 2011 season? How do you think the Fan Base would have reacted if he won a batting title somewhere else? How could Reyes have been traded at the deadline in 2011, after having pulled his hamstring? Teams are looking for help RIGHT NOW, not looking for guys who have pulled hamstring muscles.

    Re-signing Wright to that long term deal is a questionable decision but what would you be saying right now about our offense without him? How many teams needed a third basemen to begin with and how many would have been willing to pay him 140-180 M? Not as many as you think. Atlanta perhaps. That would have made Met Fans happy.

    At the time:

    Boston – Middlebrooks/Bogaerts
    NYY – A Rod
    Balt – Machado
    Toronto – Lowrie
    TB – Longoria

    Detroit – Cabrera/Castellanos
    Cleveland – Chisenhall
    KC – Moustakas
    ChiSox – Gillespe/Semein/Davidson
    Minn – Sano

    Oakland – Donaldson
    Texas – Beltre
    LAA – Cowart
    Seattle – Seager
    Houston – ?

    Atlanta – ?
    Nats – Zimmerman/Renden
    Philly – ?
    Miami – ?

    St. Louis – Freese
    Pittsburgh – Alvarez
    Cinn – Frasier
    Milwaukee – Ramirez
    Cubs – ?

    LA – Seager
    SF – Sandoval
    SD – Headley
    Ariz – Prado
    Col. – Arenado

    By my count that leaves five teams that would have received a significant enough boost at 3B to justify both the trade of top prospects and the financial commitment and three of them are bottom feeders and three are in our division (Miami qualifies on both accounts)

    That doesn’t mean that someone like Beane might not have traded for him looking to cash in on a deadline deal or the draft pick (remember the CBA changed) but I do not see how we could have taken advantage of a true bidding war and Wright wasn’t exactly at peak value.

    Chances are better than anything that the best (and possibly only) offer would have been Atlanta as that would have really sucked IMO and without getting a fair number of teams involved the one pick would probably have been the best we could do and in Wright’s case I think we’re better with him than the pick

    I think a full rebuild could have been effected while keeping both Reyes and Wright (if not for the loan provision and Bay being owed for a couple more years) which is the way we should have gone in 2005 selling Glavine, Piazza, Floyd, Cameron, Stanton, Heilman and Matsui for prospects while paying the full boat on their deals. That would have put us at about 2009 which would have coincided with the opening of Citi Field.

  • Just_Da_damaja

    “HORRIBLE contracts” are the Barry Zito’s of the world.

    You just mentioned Alex Cora and his 1 year 2 mil contract with a 1 year option…

    no other fan base would ever recall a bench player and his 2 mil salary other than the current day met fan…

  • Just_Da_damaja

    YUP !

  • Joey D.

    Hi Alan,
    I’m really upset at you – you stole all my thunder!
    Of course, you are completely right. This was no rebuilding plan from the beginning, it was a refinancing plan to get the House of Citi back in order.
    No fault of Sandy – he was hired to do that and few of us took exception to that other than the fact that he was so good at looking one straight in the eye and lying to them without a blink. That was insulting. Perhaps had he broken a sweat, did not make as much eye contact, appeared fidgety and no so self-assured about himself so it would be a bit more obvious he didn’t buy what he was saying we would have found it less offensive. But he is so good at double-talk.
    And unfortunately, I have been called out by a few for coming down on the front office for pointing this out from the beginning, as if I was the bad one in all this – especially when stating beyond the talking down to our intelligence I understood that what the Wilpons and Sandy were doing was exactly what any business person would do to protect their long term business investment and that it was Bud Selig who had to be held accountable for the state of the Mets as far as us being angry as fans.
    My heated debates came with the fans who were excusing all that was happening as well thought out baseball moves based on either an assessment of team priorities or trying to work within the harsh realities of such economic restrictions – to which my answer was that it was impossible to do so under such financial duress and that is why no moves were made to resolve our glaring weaknesses at this time.
    Even the protection of draft picks has to be looked at now in terms of an excuse more than that of an explanation. Same thing with Jose and the chocolates. Same thing with all the other excuses made for this organization as well.

  • jason bay

    Your always screaming about a rule 5 making league minimum and yes, when you have such a short window in which to win due to the age of the team and you give up a #1 pick for a 40 year old who plays 100 games over two seasons in years in which you miss the post season by a game or two it is a horrible contract and that goes for Castillo, Perez, Mota, Schoenweis, Wagner and K-Rod as well.

    Guys we traded for in Church, Green, Schneider, Francouer and Putz didn’t exactly help the effort either. Redding, Livan Hernandez and Putz weren’t exactly stellar performers here either.

    If the goal is to win now and you make a lot of short term type moves and don’t win that is even more severe a failure then merely signing a bad contract

  • Joey D.

    Hi Mr. Belvedere,
    If they had to be done, in what manner? All at once or gradual? Could the players have been slowly replaced? If it wasn’t for the economic duress could Beltran and KRod have been kept through 2011, sounder pitching added in the prior off-season (rather than the first Chris Young, Cappuano and Carasco) as the replenishing of the farm system also began?

    Could we have not made the changes which we agree had to be made in the proper manner instead? Even if Beltran walked at the end of the season, so have other players in playoff races and they were not let go mid-season by their teams. KRod’s contract had only to do with money and $17 million would not have been seen as too much for a big market team to pay in lieu of allowing the team to play out the season. All it meant in 2011 was not eventually getting Wheeler and spending more money beforehand which for a big market club in New York would have not been a fiscal handicap. How many other teams sacrifice a season to get a prospect? How many other teams with the talent we had try to shore up their problems with reclamation projects and rejects?

    We could have also tried to re-sign Reyes so today we would not have had our shortstop problem. We would not go after blue-chip hitters and sign them to such long-term contracts but rather look at our needs and see how we could resolve them. Often, that is a two-prong strategy. One is the prospects being ready in a year or so and thus we do not commit ourselves to anyone long-term and accept perhaps a pennant not flying over the ballpark for a season or so The other is the prospects not being ready for a number of years and thus trying to acquire the proper free agents that could fill in until they might be ready. Again, not blue chip but dependable ones.

    We don’t give up all our first and second round draft picks to do so but at the same time we don’t have to hold onto every single one of them as well if the right player is available.

    So just as we are told that while one can begin the “rebuilding” process it’s eventual results can’t happen over night, so too would that apply to changing the mindset – it can start immediately but it’s eventual changeover would have to be gradual as well.

  • SRT

    ‘This was no rebuilding plan from the beginning, it was a refinancing plan to get the House of Citi back in order.’

    This^

  • SRT

    Mostly agree – except the ‘commenting from ignorance’ point of view.

    I see it as more debating what these latest revelations really meant for the past several years – and going forward.

  • Joey D.

    Hi SRT,
    I bet the defense of Sandy will be that despite the results we see now and even the handicaps one could argue restricted him and his baseball people from operating like a major league corporation, thanks to him the Mets have at least entered a new way of approaching business of approaching business management different from the way the Wilpons handled things before and that in turn will make us better in the long run.
    Yes, like payroll concentration and PPPA.
    Again, let us just look at Sandy for whom he is – a corporate executive hired to do a certain job and to just separate the man from the myth.

  • Joey D.

    Jason,
    Like you knew all that was going to happen when they were signed? You must let me know the name of your psychic hotline representative is.

  • Joey D.

    Hi Martin,
    No, we are commenting from knowing that the owners did not have the financial resources to invest in fielding a competitive team no less paying off their huge debt obligations, regardless of whether or not there was a stipulation in a re-financing agreement since even if there was not, economics paralyzed Sterling Mets from taking any other course of action.
    The amendment was put in to protect BOA’s investment but it also served to protect the Mets from themselves – or at least Jeff Wilpon. Which is a shame, I think. Had that stipulation not been put in place, who knows what measures Jeff might have taken thus forcing the sale of the team.
    Darn, that Bank of America. They screwed things up just as much as Bud Selig did.

  • Joey D.

    With Sandy being on board, I think he would be able to determine, along with the Mets legal counsel, if there was something illegal in the terminology that went against the language of the CBA
    However, .does anybody know the actual language of the stipulation and the guidelines it mandated? Knowing that might shed some more light on the entire question rather than all of us with our hypothesizes since we do have some lawyers on board ourselves.

  • Martin

    1. They have been spending enough to field a competitive team. Plenty of competitive teams spend less.

    2. This issue with Bank of America is purely rumor and almost certainly not true.

  • jason bay

    Joey,

    Like my knowing or not knowing had any effect on their performance, ability to stay on the field or whether the Mets made the playoffs or not.

    Your spreading doom and gloom about every move we have made (or not made) Who’s your psychic advisor?

  • jason bay

    What many of the backers of the Wilpon Method fail to understand is that it was the Pedroia’s, Lester’s, Bucholtz’, Ellsbury’s, Paplebon’s, Ect that help flatten out the large payroll to the FA’s and can oftentimes step in for them when they falter.

    It’s not so much that the Mets have had so many free agent busts, it’s that we had very few productive low salaried players to spread out the cost and step up for the under performers.

  • Just_Da_damaja

    flatten the large payroll?

    the red sox were spending 175 mil WITH those low cost guys.

    the wilpon method means spending up to 60% of that and STILL going cheap on the international route and the draft.

    It means having 12 mil for Frank Francisco and trading Angel Pagan for Andres Torres and a reliever to save 2 million dollars.

    it means having 7.5 mil for Chris Young but not 2.5 for Hawkins.

    it means playing with arb dates for Travis in 2013, then he gets hurt in AAA.

    the “wilpon method” has been consistent since 1987.

    it has not stopped and has never stopped.

    they have always been more concerned with “perception” more than performance.