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  1. #1
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    Mets Spending Spree May Not Be a Spree At All

    http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...83054271020812

    PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla.—In the wake of their fifth consecutive losing season, years of financial insecurity and a payroll that has plummeted at a historic rate, the Mets vowed to invest in the team this winter. They'd spent more than $140 million on players as recently as 2011, but since then their budget had fallen into the bottom half of the major leagues, tens of millions below those of their big-market competitors.

    So the Mets went shopping this winter, and on the surface it appeared that they kept their promise: General manager Sandy Alderson committed $87.25 million to new contracts for pitcher Bartolo Colon and outfielders Curtis Granderson and Chris Young, the largest expenditure this off-season by a National League franchise on the free-agent market.

    But is the Mets' effort to spend their way back to relevance a mere illusion?
    Enlarge Image

    A closer look at the organization's transactions suggests that the Mets haven't added much money at all to acquire new talent. Instead, they reallocated the funds made available by departing players. In fact, their overall payroll will remain mostly unchanged from a year ago—"somewhere in excess of $85 million," Alderson said.

    This revelation doesn't necessarily mean the Mets won't improve on their 74-88 record from 2013. They should benefit from a greater return on their dollars, see meaningful development from their prospects and potentially receive better production from at least some of their returning regulars.

    But for a fan base desperate for the Mets to start operating more like the opulent crosstown Yankees, anything other than major financial growth will likely be a disappointment.

    "Had we not signed the free agents we did, we would have been a lot lower," Alderson said.

    If not for their free-agent signings, the Mets' payroll would likely rank among the lowest in baseball this season. Granderson, Colon and Young ensured they would stay afloat.

    The Mets saw as much as $55 million come off the books this off-season, headlined by $31 million from pitcher Johan Santana, including his $5.5 million buyout.

    Mets general manager Sandy Alderson committed $87.25 million to new contracts for three players this winter. Getty Images

    Of course, like everything with the Mets' finances, the math becomes complicated and the accounting murky. The Mets still must pay outfielder Jason Bay, even after parting ways in November 2012. As part of their severance, the Mets deferred $15 million of the $21 million they owed Bay to as late as 2015. From a bookkeeping standpoint, Bay's money has already been written off and isn't included in the Mets' 2014 payroll calculations, according to a Mets official familiar with the situation.

    But even though the Mets freed up about $55 million, not all of the available funds could go to new players. Third baseman David Wright's contract calls for a $9 million boost this season, jumping to $20 million from $11 million. The Mets owe pitcher Jon Niese an additional $2 million, lifting his compensation to $5 million.

    The Mets also needed to factor in salary raises for all seven of their arbitration eligible players, which added up to another $11.3 million of extra money over 2013. Adding those considerations, the Mets needed to spend upward of $32 million in 2014 salary alone just to match last year.

    They did, but just barely.

    Their three major-league free agents will make $29.25 million this season: $13 million for Granderson, $9 million for Colon and $7.25 million for Young. Their four notable minor-league free-agent additions—pitchers John Lannan, Daisuke Matsuzaka, Kyle Farnsworth and Jose Valverde—will make approximately $5 million in salary if they all make the Mets' roster.

    That brings the total in 2014 to about $34.25 million. The number could climb if any of their smaller minor-league acquisitions—like catcher Taylor Teagarden, for instance—spend time in the majors. Other players, including Farnsworth, have incentive-based bonuses in their contracts.

    No matter how the Mets account for Bay's deferred payments internally, it seems clear that, rather than spend major-market money to build a winner, they did little else but replace the money that came off last season's books.

    "We'd always like to have more players," Alderson said. "But that doesn't always make you a better team."

    Alderson makes a fair point. Teams with smaller payrolls than the Mets win consistently, namely the Tampa Bay Rays and Oakland Athletics. How a franchise spends usually matters more than how much.

    In the Mets' case, they should get more out of their money. Last season, Santana and Bay never took the field in Queens. Barring injury, the players replacing them will contribute rather than simply cash checks.

    Johan Santana's $31 million, including his $5.5 million buyout, came off the books. Getty Images

    With that in mind, are the Mets truly in position to improve? Wright believes so. "Opening day this year will be 100% better than we were opening day last year," he said.

    Ironically, the improvement will likely need to come from within, rather than from the newcomers. Colon, who posted a 2.65 ERA for Oakland last season, essentially replaces ace Matt Harvey, who will miss all of 2014 as he recovers from Tommy John surgery. Granderson, who slugged 84 home runs for the Yankees in 2011 and 2012, essentially replaces departed outfielder Marlon Byrd, who hit 21 homers for the Mets in 425 at bats last season.

    In other words, the money the Mets spent primarily replaces the production they lost. So how do they get better? The Mets' heralded pitching prospects, highlighted by Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero, must come to the majors and take steps forward. Travis d'Arnaud, arguably the sport's best catching prospect, must begin to produce.

    But most important, the Mets' other players, their underachievers, must rebound from disappointing showings in 2013—young players Alderson said "have the capacity to improve."

    First baseman Ike Davis cannot hit .205. Shortstop Ruben Tejada cannot hit .202. If they do, the Mets likely will end up where they did last year.

    "There's only so much you can do in one off-season free-agent wise, trade-wise, to plug those holes," Wright said. "Some of that has to be done with the guys that we have here."
    Quote Originally Posted by NYG+Braves
    Im a Braves fan and im scared to face Harvey way more then Strasburgh. Lol strasburgh dont scare me at all compared to Harvey.

  2. #2
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    So basically it's reiterating the fact that after making the acquisitions of Young, Colon, Granderson, Farnsworth, Teagarden, Valverde and accounting for various player raises they basically spent what was coming off their books this offseason?

    Well that's pretty obvious considering payroll is similar to last year at this current stage.
    Last edited by metswon69; 02-15-2014 at 11:10 AM.

  3. #3
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    Mets Spending Spree May Not Be a Spree At All

    Well you don't have to be a mathematician to figured that they did not add much payroll wise from last year to this year, but only allocated the money that came off the books to new players.


    I thought this off season was a disappointment spending wise when they decided to not peruse Elsbury or Choo, either of those guys would off served as the the lead off guy they needed.

    I thought the Mets might and should sign Granderson and Choo and if they did it would off been a great off season.

  4. #4
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    That was a very insightful and informative article.
    Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.
    -Sun Tzu

  5. #5
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    LOL at the stories that these people write and double LOL that it evolves into a thread on here.

  6. #6
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    And a triple LOL at us for posting in this thread.
    Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.
    -Sun Tzu

  7. #7
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    They cut payroll from last year, they've essentially spent nothing. That's why after 3-4 years of austerity, the Mets still can't field a competitive team, I say 'can't I mean 'won't'.

    I also don't care what they claim payroll was last year, they were very happy to let us think it was $93-95M, they only came up with $87M when they needed to make it look like they hadn't cut payroll again this year.

    I knew they would try and twist the payroll numbers over the last year or two and they've done just that, they don't fool me with their creative accounting.

    Here's Alderson in 2012, once again - lying

    http://metsblog.com/metsblog/sandy-e...m-next-season/

    First up he projects over $100M for 2013 in this article, the story then went that payroll was around the mid 90's in 2013, and then coming into this off-season they claimed it was only $87M or so.

    The most consistent thing about Alderson is that he has lied over and over and over again about payroll, since the day he arrived.

    Sandy's been lying since day 1:

    http://nymag.com/daily/sports/2011/1...ojections.html


    Only an idiot thinks the Mets have spent this off-season. And the truth is that payroll has gone down from $142M to around the $87M mark today (i'll assume they will hit that figure) the real truth is that the Mets have cut payroll by $55M.

    FACT.
    Last edited by Marty Mcfly; 02-15-2014 at 12:45 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Magoo View Post
    That was a very insightful and informative article.
    As you can see, it was quite the inciteful article.
    Scarecrow: I haven't got a brain... only straw.
    Dorothy: How can you talk if you haven't got a brain?
    Scarecrow: I don't know... But some people without brains do an awful lot of talking... don't they?
    Dorothy: Yes, I guess you're right.

  9. #9
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    The major difference being is the Mets replaced the dead money on the roster, close to 45 million bucks, with players who should have an on the field impact in 2014.

    Santana, Bay, and Frank Francisco played a total of 6 innings for the Mets in 2013. Let's hope they get better ROI this time.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by eltwo View Post
    As you can see, it was quite the inciteful article.
    Well played, sir.
    Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.
    -Sun Tzu

  11. #11
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    We should sign Drew.
    "We're snakebitten, baby." --Fred Wilpon

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by metswon69 View Post
    The major difference being is the Mets replaced the dead money on the roster, close to 45 million bucks, with players who should have an on the field impact in 2014.

    Santana, Bay, and Frank Francisco played a total of 6 innings for the Mets in 2013. Let's hope they get better ROI this time.
    They essentially had a $40 million payroll last year.


    Jew You Believe In Miracles?!?!

    Quote Originally Posted by VendettaRed07 View Post
    noah is gonna be a beast man.

    with him and harvey, its like were gonna have Goku and Vegetta in the same rotation

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by metswon69 View Post
    The major difference being is the Mets replaced the dead money on the roster, close to 45 million bucks, with players who should have an on the field impact in 2014.
    Not to mention, they spent more than any other team in the NL this winter.

    I'd like to see a little more as well (give me Drew), but I think some people have inflated ideas about how much is normally accomplished in one offseason. It's reasonable to want more, but I never saw any reason to expect more from this offseason.

  14. #14
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    Nothing new here.

  15. #15
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    Our fans just want them to spend for the sake of spending. Look we did that in the minaya Era and it left us ina bad spot. Our farm system was barren and the big free agents like bay and santana were either hurt or were a bust. I understand the last few years have been tough but the bad times are ending. Our farm system went from one of the worst to one of the better ones and we have some good young talent to go along with wright granderson and hopefully bounce back years from ike and chris young

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