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The Mets may not even pretend to contend next year

Sep 5, 2011, 2:44 PM EDT

alderson at podium

While all teams are constantly making changes and are trying to build a winner, the Mets haven’t declared a full-fledged rebuild — the kind where everyone of value is sold off and the process begins anew — for many, many years.  But according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, that’s on the table this winter.

After commenting on Sandy Alderson’s comments regarding a potential $100-110 million payroll for 2012, Sherman says that at least some on the organization believe that even more drastic measures are needed:

And actually for the first time this week, a top Mets official said to me what none had been willing to before, either for the record or for background: That one serious discussion being had at the upper reaches of the franchise is whether it would be wise to cut back greatly next year and make 2012 a rebuilding season in which club officials do not go through the annual game of trying to convince fans, if everything breaks right, they can be a playoff team.

Given where Alderson is on the record, that implies that this scenario would mean less than that $100-110 million idea.  Although even with that said, it doesn’t sound like a scorched earth rebuild, as Sherman mentions the possibility of the Mets jumping back into the free agent pool following the 2012 season. Maybe it’s just semantics: we’re not going to give lip service to the idea of contending, even if we don’t cut things back to, say, $80 million.

Whatever they do, I think they have the right general manager to handle a rebuild, be it major or moderate, so this kind of talk shouldn’t be nearly as worrisome as it might have been a couple of years ago.

  1. nyninersfan40 - Sep 5, 2011 at 3:10 PM

    Mets are a joke sell the team please

  2. SmackSaw - Sep 5, 2011 at 4:08 PM

    Well, next year is the 50th anniversary of the Amazin’s. Maybe they’ll lose 120.

  3. sdelmonte - Sep 5, 2011 at 4:11 PM

    I’m fine with this. The Mets need to be realistic. And I can wait one more season.

  4. yankeesfanlen - Sep 5, 2011 at 4:50 PM

    Sorry, sdelmonte, I respect your opinion, but if my team said this I would be ballistic. And I would welcome the Metropolitans to be a competitive force again to renew the NYC rivalry we once had.

  5. rnrfan - Sep 5, 2011 at 5:05 PM

    Uhh…we already ARE rebuilding. If we let Reyes go, the only big contracts we’d have are Bay (who sucks and we can’t get rid of), Santana (hurt) and Wright. So, “rebuilding” is really just letting Reyes walk and maybe trading Wright. Look at the rest of our projected team next year: Thole, Davis, Murphy, Tejada, Duda, Pagan, Niese, Gee, Pelfrey, Dickey, and Parnell. That, my friends, is rebuilding.

  6. dirtycrumbs - Sep 5, 2011 at 5:25 PM

    There’s definitely something a little curious about a big market club talking like this, and I think the Wilpons obviously need to go, but even if Alderson had a blank check, what would the team spend it on?

    Seeing the recent history of a team burned by brutal free agency signings, and how that’s hamstrung the team’s flexibility going forward, I really don’t have a problem with the team taking time to clean out bad contracts and reverse course on Minaya’s disastrous reign.

    I honestly don’t see how signing CJ Wilson and Prince Fielder instantly makes the Mets teh awesome. Free agent band-aids for deeper organizational deficiencies is what created this problem in the first place. The Mets obviously need to radically change their approach – and they are!

    If the Mets are to use their resources for good, they need to focus on player development and building for the future… and they did that this year! They signed all their draft picks and (finally!) went brazenly over slot for a bunch of guys.

    Alderson’s approach is the sound, sustainable one, and the Mets will be relevant again sooner than later.

  7. tuftsb - Sep 5, 2011 at 6:40 PM

    Can the Mets actually have a $ 100-110mm payroll if the team is losing $50mm or more this season (and maybe more next year)? In order for Wilpon to keep control of the club in light of the losses, payroll might have to be cut closer to the $80mm level.

    But Santana is due $ 24mm, Bay $ 18.13, Wirght $15.25, Dickey $4.25 and Carrasco $ 1.2mm. I believe that they also owe $ 3mm on K-Rod. This equals $67.83mm before getting to arbitration on Pelfrey, Pagan and Paulino, whose 2011 salaries totaled $8.45mm. Assuning that the Mets offer arbitrationm these 3 players will cost at least $ 10mm in 2012. That’s just south of $ 80mm for only 8 players, with no guarantee that Santana can perform.

    Hopefully the economic reality that payroll cannot dip under $ 100mm will force Wilpon out as owner.

  8. tuftsb - Sep 5, 2011 at 9:09 PM

    “Excuse me, I was the victim of a Ponzi scheme and may owe $ 1 billion. I run a baseball franchise in the largest city in the US and am losing $50 million or more this year and next year. Can you give me some serious eight figures in cash? Don’t worry – please ignore my recent track record. I’ll do a good job handling your money! Just don’t ask for any control or too many questions.”

    It would work better if Wilpon declared himself to be a Nigerian prince!

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