Sandy Alderson is in the final season of his original four-year deal that expires in October, but the team has an option on Alderson’s contract for 2015. It was reported earlier in the season that the option was not picked up and that the owners will make a decision sometime near or after the season. Alderson has yet to produce a winning record, but that’s not entirely the best way to view his tenure with the Mets.
David Lennon of Newsday, caught up with Sandy and two discussed the option and how invested the GM is in the success of the team. “The goal is to have a winning team, and a playoff-qualifying team,” said Alderson, who refused to comment about his contract status.
Alderson was taken back when Lennon told him he that to many fans he comes across as more of an accountant for ownership rather than a GM hell-bent to steer the Mets back to October. He disagreed with that characterization when asked if he was fully invested in seeing the Mets win a championship. “Yeah, absolutely,” Alderson said. “I’m surprised you’re even asking whether that’s true or not.”
My fellow Mets fans, now before you put me in a straitjacket and lock me in a padded room, please hear me out.
Sandy Alderson needs to stay. And yes, I am completely serious.
So before I see pitchforks and torches outside my house, let me explain why.
1. Sandy Alderson knows how to run a baseball team
After teaching A’s GM Billy Beane how to build a perennial contender, after serving as an assistant to commissioner Bud Selig himself, and after turning a dismal looking Padres team into consecutive division winners, Alderson took the Mets helm in 2010, where he was left with a hot, smoldering mess from the Omar Minaya regime. The roster was laden with all kinds of encumbrances. Alderson promptly cut Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo, showing that he would not tolerate poor play at a high expense. He has continued on this principle ever since by shedding the painfully burdensome contract of Jason Bay as well. He has refrained from taking on more large unproductive contracts in their places.
Additionally, while many of you have been critical of Sandy’s inaction during offseason free agency, I praise it. Alderson is thrifty, and he won’t waste a dime on a player that he has any doubt about, unlike Minaya. While his doubts have kept the Mets from the likes of Cuban phenoms Yasiel Puig and Jose Abreu, they have also prevented the team from being pinned down by monstrous contracts from players like Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder, who make upwards of 20 million annually while performing like Lucas Duda clones. So Mets fans, would you rather see fading ex-superstars, or an unburdened team on the cusp of something big?
2. Sandy Alderson has established a model for continued success in New York
Since day one, Alderson has preached patience, building a winning baseball team from the ground up is not an overnight project. By revamping the farm system through savvy trades for prospects (i.e half season of Carlos Beltran for at least seven years of Zack Wheeler) and a wise draft strategy, Alderson has established a foundation for a winning team through a flourishing farm system. By cementing in a nucleus of young promising players, surrounding them with useful, but replaceable pieces, and by transforming the farm system into a pipeline for talent, Alderson has set the blueprint for the next Mets’ run of success and one that should last much longer than any previous runs.
3. Keeping Sandy Alderson is just common sense
The logic is simple really. Why blow something up when it is so close to being finished? Bringing in a new GM to “clean up Alderson’s mess” would only setback the rebuilding process another 4-5 years. For a fan base in such a dire need of wins right now, why not have faith in the man who is currently so close to providing them? Clearly, Sandy Alderson has proven that he knows how to win. He did it in Oakland and he did it in San Diego. He has the track record, all he needs is the chance to do it in New York. Extending his contract should be the alpha priority. Regardless of any action or inaction at the trading deadline, Sandy should be our GM next year and beyond.
(Updated August 7)