SAN DIEGO — Here we go again! The Coupon’s ability to spend money in recent seasons has always been cloaked in a little bit of mystery. The Wilpons were clearly damaged financially by being ensnared in the Bernard L. Madoff fraud scheme and, have operated more like a small-market team than a big-market one. But more recently there have been hints by the Mets that they are ready to spend more, although how much is never that clear.
On Monday, however, Babbling GM Sandy Alderson tried to add some clarity to the Met’s always unclear situation. Speaking at the winter meetings, he said that the Mets’ payroll, which was around $85 million in 2014, had now pushed up to about $100 million — largely because of raises to players already on the roster and the $21 million, two-year deal with free agent Michael Cuddyer — and that it was likely to stay at that figure right into the start of the 2015 season.
“Might be a little lower, might be at that level,” Alderson said of the $100 million number. “I don’t expect it to go up too much, if at all.” It might also be in between, sideways, up or down or down or up! Right Sandy?
Essentially, Alderson was letting it be known that the Mets, with a growing pool of young talent, hope to finally contend in 2015 but are not about to start spending a lot more money in order to do so.
The Mets do want to add another left-handed reliever to complement Josh Edgin, would like a right-handed bat as an upgrade over Eric Campbell off the bench, and, most significant, would like to acquire a starting shortstop, probably through a trade.
To do so, the Mets are looking to deal at least one of their three veteran starters — Jon Niese, Bartolo Colon, or Dillon Gee — although the trade market for pitchers isn’t expected to fully develop until the top free-agent starters sign new deals.
Trading Colon would seem to make the most sense for the Mets. He is owed $11 million next year, which is a big number for the Mets, and he will turn 42 in May. The Mets’ chances of trading him will no doubt increase if they are willing to pay part of his 2015 salary.
Manager Terry Collins, who was also present, again stated that he expected the Mets to contend next season. Sure Terry, tell met’s fans some more bullshit.
“It’s time,” Collins said. “I’ve done nothing for the last four years but preach to our fan base to be patient. Sure Met’s fans should be patient and pay ridiculous prices to watch bad Baseball.