Why you’ll never get the complete truth from the Mets.

For many, our first impression was one of openness and honesty. When Sandy Alderson was introduced as general manager he spoke of wanting to win, yet said there would be difficult times. He gave hope things would be different in the new regime.

There seemed to be an honesty about him absent from previous Mets management and the current ownership. You wanted to trust him.

While Alderson is on point, it is still not his team, and despite their stated intentions of giving him the resources, the Wilpons continue to play it close to the vest financially. This is a tentative time for the Mets because they still need to sell tickets and don’t want to risk alienating the on-the-fence fans by telling them the real team will appear in 2015, if not later.

Watching the Mets now is akin to going to the movies and getting two hours worth of previews before the feature. And, maybe not even getting the feature.

There are two types of fans. There is blind loyalty that will remain passionate for their team and support it regardless. Since 1962, there’s been more losing than winning, but the Mets continue to hold those fans as they are forever.

Their interest might turn to discouragement and frustration, but if they have the money they will find their way to Citi Field as they did Shea Stadium. They will listen on the radio and watch on TV. They will absorb every written word from the major media vehicles to the blogs. They will talk Mets to anybody who will listen, because, after all, they are Mets fans and that’s what they do.

The Mets know they have a core following. If they came out and said this will take time, more than we expected, that base will remain steadfast.

Then there is the fair weather variety, which come in various forms. They come out when it is convenient, or the weather is nice, or the team is winning, or they get free tickets, or that night’s Law and Order is a repeat, or the other team is the Yankees.

They know who Jose Reyes is and believe he is the Mets and the franchise can’t ¬†exist without him. They think the same of David Wright. They thought it of Dwight Gooden, Darryl Strawberry and Tom Seaver. Players come and go, but the team remains. Their fancy is caught by the shiny star, much like a child with a new toy.

The flexible fans weigh the cost of a Citi Field experience to that of a Broadway play, a trip to the beach, a night out in Manhattan, the movies, or any thing else that might attract their fickle dollar.

They are flexible because they bend to the prevailing wind. As the great movie line goes, they “can’t handle the truth.” If they knew the Mets were three or four years from serious contention, they would tell you to leave them a wake-up call. These fans aren’t interested in rebuilding and don’t care about Zack Wheeler and Matt Harvey being three years from Flushing. They don’t care about building because Reyes is the here and now.

The Mets care most about these fans, as do all sports teams, because they don’t yet have their money. The Mets know the loyal will pay; they are givens to be taken for granted. It’s the others, who haven’t yet laid out the cash, they are chasing.

Alderson can’t be honest with them because to do so is to tell them there’s no compelling reason to come to the park other than to buy into the dream of the future, which they won’t as they haven’t made an emotional investment. To do so would be to chase them away.

To these fans, the truth is poison.

8 thoughts on “Why you’ll never get the complete truth from the Mets.

  1. John,

    don’t you think that there are several plans going forward to include, one with Reyes, one without Reyes, one depending on the outcome of the Madoff lawsuit, etc etc. As such, Alderson cant come out and just say we are not competing to win this year or next for the very reasons you mentioned in your article. Does not make good business sense to come out and tell everyone your rebuilding. Alderson does not have to say it, if Reyes signs someplace else I think everyone can see the Mets are waiting on the pitching from Double A to get to the bigs and hopefully the contracts of Santana and Bay to expire in 2013.

    2012 is a re-build year without question and trades and the trade deadline could be interesting time for the organization and the future

    I still think if the Mets don’t sign Reyes then the Mets should look at any trade proposals for Wright. Adding two or three players right now could push the timeline for the ability to compete much quicker and right when the Phillies contracts are all coming due and with their players getting old.

    I think your correct in that the Wilpons are not saying how bad the Mets financial mess really is and we will never know unless they have to sell. I would personally like to see the Wilpons sell. It would take a huge cloud away from the organization and the Mets and fans can move on and talk about something else.

    glen

  2. Hey Mr Delcos. Those fair weather fans that you seemingly take so much glee in making fun of…. They are the ones you need to make a profit. Guess you just don’t get it. The zombie loyalist is a given. But guess what , there aren’t enough to make money. Even tho you are clueless I’ll explain. Those fans don’t bend to the wind. They are actually using their brain and spending thier valuable money where they get the most value. Smart folks pay for quality. You must be on the verge of bankruptcy. These people look for quality. that’s why some Broadway shows last for years and others fold in a Broadway second. When you and the other blind followers of your new flase god Alderson wake up you’ll get it. never mind, you’ll never get it.

  3. Glen (5): Yes, I do believe there are multiple plans, but I also believe the team is leaning toward a scenario where Reyes won’t be here. … And, that’s why I am saying Alderson can’t come out and say it – or you’ll never get the complete truth – that they are rebuilding. The loyalist will accept that, but it is the on-the-fence fan who’ll spend his money elsewhere. … Reyes is the determining factor in how the Mets rate themselves. If they let him go then they are saying the team is not ready and you’re right, trading Wright becomes more of a sensible option. … And, the Wilpons believe they will get through this, which is why they are collecting minority investors in small increments. Until this plays out in the courts and the Wilpons receive a judgment against them, they won’t sell. And, even should they get a judgment against them they’ll use the appeal process and this will continue to drag on.-JD

  4. Nathan

    I am not sure where your venom is coming from.

    John is laying out for the readers of the blog what may not be obvious to all.

    It may be obvious to you but not everyone is as smart as you are.

    Some folks pay for quality as you say, and some wouldn’t know quality if it hit them over the head.