As a New York Mets fan I’m used to being disappointed by the team I root for. Saying you rooted for the Mets was a badge of honor that you wore proudly. Yes we have had tough times in the past but there was always the Miracle Mets of 1969 taking down the juggernaut Orioles of the late 1960’s and 70’s. The 1986 World Series will forever be remembered for the most unlikely rally in baseball history in game six. Vin Scully’s call “Behind the bag… It gets by Buckner! Here comes Knight and the Mets win it!!!” will live on in baseball lore forever. In 2000 they played in the World Series, falling to the two-time defending champion Yankees. In 2006 they had the best record in the National League and fell one game short of the World Series despite having two legitimate postseason starters the duration of the playoffs.
Ever since 2006 though, it seems the franchise is cursed. Late season collapses in 2007 and 2008 cost them a spot in the playoffs on the last day of the season both years. It only got worse though. In the franchises first two seasons at Citi Field, all the franchise could muster was back-to-back fourth place finishes and a combined record of 149–175.
After cleaning house this offseason and bringing in some of the best minds in baseball to run the team, things were looking up. The disappointment with the team however has reached new heights. According to a New York Times article, the Wilpon family and the Katz family, the owners of the team, are now looking to sell 25% stake to cover costs they are facing stemming from a class-action suit stating they were involved heavily in business with Bernie Madoff. This comes after the Wilpons admitted to losing money in Madoff’s $65 billion ponzi scheme but not enough that it would effect their ability to run the team.
It is now clear that it has. I just wish they had told us sooner. By keeping secrets from the fans, the Mets sent false promises that they were committed financially to putting a team capable of competing for the World Series on the field. It is little wonder they made no plays for any of the major free agents, while signing solid yet oft injured players to low risk contracts. At this point it is apparent that new general manager Sandy Alderson is simply looking to improve the team for the long run. Outfielder Carlos Beltran, infielders Jose Reyes and Luis Castillo, and pitcher Oliver Perez are free agents at the end of the season meaning nearly $50 million will come off the payroll.
This could allow the Mets to be competitive in the trade market during the season and especially in the free agent market in the off-season. The Mets wont make the playoffs this season, and likely won’t in 2012 either, but the hope is there. I’m just disappointed it hasn’t come sooner.