Why Can’t Sandy Alderson Act Boldly?

In the wake of the stunning Prince Fielder-Ian Kinsler swap, I have one question — why can’t Sandy Alderson act similarly boldly and decisively?

sandy alderson
Nothing has changed at Citi Field since Sandy Alderson took over.

The Tigers apparently decided they wanted to move Fielder’s contract. The Rangers decided they needed another big bat. So the deal was made. It was simple as that.

Alderson, on the other hand, is busy “feeling out” the market, hoping and praying that prices for free agents and trade targets drop as the winter wears on.

That is probably a prudent approach; after all, why pay November/December prices when you might be able to get an after-Christmas discount?

But there is absolutely nothing wrong with targeting a player you want and going hard after him. Instead, Alderson seems content to sit on the sidelines and monitor things, waiting for players to drop into his lap.

It’s just not going to happen.

What will likely happen is that we will see free agent after free agent sign with other teams, while Alderson will wait at the bottom of the scrap heap to scoop up whoever is left, just like he has done for the previous three off-seasons. How has that worked out?

Granted, both the Tigers and the Rangers are in win-now mode while the Mets are not. But to get to that position, Sandy Alderson cannot afford to take the passive approach yet again. But you know he will.

Going back to the trade for a moment, the more I think about it, the worse it looks for the Tigers. Fielder is owed $168 million over the next seven years while Kinsler is due $62 million for the next four (including a buyout of a fifth season). So the Tigers are saving more than $100 million, right? No, because they are also sending $30 million to Texas.

This means in essence the Tigers will pay Kinsler $92 million for the next four seasons, an average of $23 million per season. If they kept Fielder, they would have paid him $24 million per season, albeit for seven years. Kinsler is a good second baseman, but he is not even remotely on par with Fielder to be essentially making the same money.

The Tigers must have concluded that Fielder would not be worth the expense over those last three seasons. Perhaps they are right, but over the next four years, I would much rather have Fielder than Kinsler.

You also have to wonder if the Mets could have gotten into this at all. Kinsler is better than Daniel Murphy, but not $92 million better. The Tigers might have had to send more cash to the Mets, but because Murphy does not have an onerous contract, Detroit would have saved more money and they still would have gotten a competent second baseman.

But of course, Sandy Alderson never would have done it, so why even bother bringing it up?

5 thoughts on “Why Can’t Sandy Alderson Act Boldly?

  • November 21, 2013 at 5:49 pm
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    This was a good trade for Detroit. Their infield will improve with Cabrera moving to 1B freeing 3B up for highly touted prospect Nick Castellanos. This move also frees up cap space so they can re-sign Sherzer or even go after Robinson Cano. Fielder might have a better bat but he’s been atrocious in the post-season and his contract was foolish so it was wise to unload him and at least they got a decent 2B.

    Why can’t the Mets do this type of thing? They don’t have a Fielder to make that type of move unless you want to unload a couple of prospects but Texas was looking for power in the middle of their lineup and Fielder would provide that. Murphy isn’t an “all-star” and never will be….Kinsler was. Kinsler also has playoff experience and Detroit, unlike NY, are an organization that desires to make the playoffs.

    Bravo Dan Dombrowski!!

  • November 22, 2013 at 7:09 am
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    Murph will continue to be maligned by Met fans for not being perfect but the fact of the matter is he is a pretty damned good ballplayer. He can hit with authority (.286 AVG, 38 doubles and 13 HR are not crap numbers for a second baseman) and will hustle out everything. Why continue to trash him? I would rather have him out there than Dan Uggla!

  • November 22, 2013 at 7:43 am
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    I also notice that the 40 man roster is at 40. Do we think that Stand Pat will cut some dead wood before the Rule V draft and take a chance on someone or is he going to save the $50K and stand pat?

  • November 22, 2013 at 10:10 am
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    I’m not trashing Murphy; I like him. He is a good, not great player. But if he could be included in a package to get a great player, I would do it. Otherwise I am very happy to have Murphy on the team.

    As far as Rule 5, I could see Alderson picking someone up. It is low-risk, the type of move Alderson seems to like!

  • November 23, 2013 at 9:29 pm
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    Met Fan 4 Ever,

    I wasn’t trashing Murphy I was merely stating a fact that Kinsler is a three time all star and Murphy never will be one. Those are facts, at least presently they are. This was a trade for an All Star and in order to do that you have to give them, in this case Detroit, something of value which the Mets don’t have (okay Captain America). That’s reality my friend.

    I happen to like Daniel Murphy but that’s neither here nor there. If I had the choice between Ian Kinsler or Daniel Murphy I would take Kinsler in a heartbeat. I don’t know why you inserted Uggla into the conversation but since you brought it up I’d take him over Murphy as well. He’s a much better 2B and he hits for power. Those HR numbers Murphy hit last season (13) are most likely a one shot deal. Uggla doubles and in most seasons quadruples Murphy’s HR. output.

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