Richard Herr - So Whaddya Think? - 8

The Ownership
“So whaddya think?”
“Whaddya mean? What do I think?”
“Whaddya think the Mets are going to do to round out their roster?”
“Not for a while.”
“Why not?”
“Because Sandy signed Cespedes.”
“But that was a good thing.”
“It certainly was.”
“Then why should the Mets wait on filling out their roster because they signed Cespedes?”
“That’s exactly my thinking.”
“Are we into one of those ‘who’s on first’ conversations?”
“It sounds that way, and that’s because there’s no logic here when we’re talking about signing people. It involves the ownership.”
“I’m sure you’re going to fill me in on what you mean.”
“Did you doubt it?”
“If I know you, wild horses couldn’t stop it.”
“Okay, since you insist, I’ll explain. The Mets signed Cespedes, which is a good thing, right?”
“But that did something awful.”
“Which is…?”
“They put their payroll up over a hundred fifty million. Which, to the ownership, is a calamitous thing.”
“It goes back to the Bernie Madoff story.”
“I thought that was over.”
“It should be, but it ain’t. I think that most investment advisors would tell you to carefully balance your portfolio over a spectrum of investments.”
“We’re talking about smart financial management?”
“Yes. For instance if you looked at my portfolio, you could see that my investments are very carefully spread over two pizza discount coupons and a losing lottery ticket.”
“That is very astute money management.”
“Thank you. I’m glad you appreciate it. However, the Mets owners forgot to hide some of their money away on pizza coupons. They dumped way too much money on the Madoff thing which resulted in way too much money going bye-bye when it collapsed. And the part that went away was that thing called cash flow.”
“The owners had to turn to the Mets to be their cash cow. That’s where they get, as it were, their pocket money, the dough they need to spend on mortgages and living expenses like that.”
“I’m still trying to figure out why we don’t have more relief pitchers.”
“Like I said, it’s because they signed Cespedes.”
“That makes as much sense as the first time you said it.”
“Signing Cespedes sent their payroll up.”
“I’ve heard you say in the past that that shouldn’t be a problem for a winning team.”
“It shouldn’t, but it is.”
“Care to explain that?”
“It’s very hard to thread the logic of this argument when I am so dehydrated.”
“If I were you, I’d buy a round since it happens to be your turn.”
“I will plunge on, somewhat more hydrated but with reduced cash flow.”
“That’s what you were talking about.”
“Cash flow.”
“That’s right. The owners are relying on the Mets to furnish them with cash flow, so they’re upset because Sandy has the payroll up over 150 mil.”
“So they’re not letting him spend any more money on the guys to fill out the roster until Sandy unloads a contract like Bruce’s.”
“They’re holding up the rest of the business until Bruce is with some other club?”
“Doesn’t sound like a good idea, does it?”
“The owners got a funny way of looking at business. You remember when they said that everyone should buy tickets, and then they would give us a good team?”
“That is the total reverse of how you do business. Suppose you wanted to sell the public a great new widget.”
“The first thing you do is come up with a dandy little widget, then everyone buys it, right?”
“You don’t come up with a so-so to bad widget, tell everyone to buy this one, then we’ll take the money and come back with a really great widget for you to buy from us.”
“I think I’d hold onto my money and wait for you to come up with the really good widget.”
“Exactly. The Mets’ owners are trying to business backwards. They want you to buy before they come up with something good. Or, as they’re doing now, they won’t buy what the club needs now until the future expenses are lowered.”
“That makes no sense.”
“That’s right.”
“What should we hope happen?”
“We should hope that it all works out in this wonderful new year.”
The year the Mets win the series?”
“That’s right.”

Whenever Richard Herr isn’t solving all the Mets’ problems, he spends his time writing humorous science fiction novels.

You can see his books at https://www.amazon.com/Richard-Herr/e/B00J5XBKX4.


Mack Ade said...

Talking about Madoff in 2017 is like saying that Hillary had 3 million more votes than The Donald. Who cares? The system is what the system is and, frankly, the Mets do not skimp on salaries anymore... 2014: $84+mil... 2015: $101+mil... 2016: $135+ mil

Our problem is the contracts that were signed in the past... Wright $20mil... Granderson $15mil... and the Bruce ($13mil) and Walker ($17.2mil) signed recently...

We're bogged down with salary right now and unless at least one lf the Grandy or Bruce contracts can be moved, we are left with secondary and third level pickups for the remainder of the Hot Stove season.

It is no longer an owner problem.

It is a management problem.

Richard Herr said...

Admittedly Madoff was a long time ago, and it should be a dead issue, but the Mets aren't doing anything. The management looks like it's waiting to clear up some money before they go looking for anyone else. There's still lots of room under the league salary cap which is going up.

Adam Smith said...

No one can tell the future, and plenty of big ticket roster items end up as bad investments, but it's hard not to believe that If this team was willing to spend and additional $20-25mm, which would put it solidly among the big market clubs, they could answer a number of questions, and go into the season with a very big shot to win it all. Yes, the Maloff thing is still impacting baseball/business decisions. And yes, so is the Wright contract, and the Bruce/Grandy contracts. Walker I will leave out of this, cuz while he is almost certainly an overpay, I expect him to produce more than the other three. They're probably going to end up trading Bruce for very little in this market. I don't think they could get Dilson Herrera back for him if they picked up 2/3 of his salary. Bruce was a bad move all around. And I think they actually want the overall payroll around $10mm below where it is now, so even if they get a taker for Bruce's contract, I'm guessing it only frees up around $3mm for bullpen help.

eraff said...

It''s not an Ownership Problem...It's not a Management Problem... It's January 4th.

The FA Market is locked up with "Secondary Targets"...and the Mets are trying to Trade Secondary Targets---Bruce, Grandy, Duda.

Sandy has spent money and prospects over the past 2 years---often In-Season. They have good reason to keep their powder dry, right now. 4 of 5 pitchers were not pitching at the end of year. 3 of 4 of their "supposed Infield" is coming off of Back Surgery. Late February, or after, might be a better time to decide what they have and what they need.

Mack's Mets © 2012