Mets have an Honesty Problem

I think one of the things bothering Mets fans these days is the lack of, to put it nicely, candor coming from management. To put it more bluntly, they are flat out lying to us.

This lying is nothing new. Omar Minaya was a compulsive liar, but he lied about little things. The big lies came after the Madoff scandal. How often and for how many years did the Wilpons say it would not effect the operations of the ballclub? Of course they knew it would from the moment their account statement read $0 instead of $500 million. Unless you are uber-wealthy, losing $500 million and the guaranteed 15% yearly cash flow from that money will effect the way you operate. The Wilpons are rich men, but not that rich.

Now we are getting dishonesty from Sandy Alderson. Again, we are used to a GM lying, but it was easy to pick out Minaya’s exaggerated statements. Alderson is tougher.

See, they can’t even look us in the eye!

Where is that $120 million payroll you promised? Then $110 million to $120 million? Then around $100 million? The payroll now sits closer to $90 million. Perhaps Alderson made the misleading statements based on changing information from the Wilpons, but barring that possible revelation, this is on him.

And what about Jose Reyes — did the Mets have any intention of resigning him? Alderson claims he wanted to, yet he never even made him an offer. That doesn’t sound like a team that wants to retain a player. If Alderson just came out and said, “You know what, he is just too expensive for us right now, so we’re not going to sign him,” Mets fans would still be angry but we would appreciate the honesty. Instead we are left with statements that have no basis in fact.

Are the Mets rebuilding, or what? Will they shed all big contracts and live with a low payroll for the foreseeable future while the prospects advance and the Wilpons get their finances in order? Who knows? No one is telling us. I think we could support a rebuilding process (as long as David Wright is still there for us to cheer) if we know that is what is happening. But leaving fans in the dark just creates more resentment. That is something the Mets do not need from their already disillusioned fan base.

Obviously the Mets fear that if they tell fans they are going into full rebuilding mode they won’t come to games until the project is complete. They are dead wrong. While the fair-weather fans will stay home, the die-hards will not. We love and support this team, but it is very difficult to support anything if the people in charge are not being honest about what they are doing. We just want to know what is going on. That is not too much to ask.

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