Fred Wilpon has announced to the world that his family’s money problems are over, and that the Mets are ready to spend money. How odd that his proclamation comes after money-spending season is over.
“I think we would anticipate being big investors if that were appropriate,” Wilpon said about next off season’s free agent crop, according to ESPNNewYork.com. “That depends on what the market is. If the market is such that that’s where we have to be to be competitive and winners, yeah.”
While Wilpon acknowledged for perhaps the first time that the Madoff scandal had an effect on the team’s finances, he said “It wasn’t, as people have written, the reason.” He said there was plenty of other bank debt that needed to be paid off. That’s all done now.
Fred Wilpon also seemed to blame fans for part of the team’s money problems.
“This is, to me, a break-even business. I always strive to break even. I’m not looking to make any money. I strive to break even. So if [fans] don’t show up, that’s hard… Remember, the people have to come to the ballpark obviously. If you have a competitive team, they will.”
But if you don’t spend money, how can the tram be competitive? Wilpon wants fans to show up to see a losing team to increase revenue, then he will spend it on the team. That is not fair. The Mets need to spend money first to show a commitment to winning before fans turn over their hard-earned cash to Fred Wilpon.
So in the meantime the payroll will be lower in 2013 than in 2012. That is no way to build fan confidence.