Sandy Alderson On If Jose Reyes Is A Franchise Player

Last night, Sandy Alderson hosted a conference call with a few Mets bloggers that was by far the best one I ever participated in. We had some great questions from everyone and Sandy, who was very cordial, took his time and answered all of our questions concisely and proficiently. The tone of the call was kind of upbeat and it was interesting to hear how passionate everyone was about their concerns. Amazin Avenue was good enough to transcribe the entire call which you can read here.

My question to Sandy was regarding Jose Reyes (of course), but it started out kind of funny when when he responded to Shannon of the Mets about Shannon of Mets Police just as I was introduced.

Shannon Forde, Mets Media Relations: Shannon [Shark] really wants to know if you watch the Walking Dead.

Alderson: The Walking Dead, by the way, was a Marine battalion in Vietnam, I don’t know what it’s referring to now, probably Vampires or something..

Joe DeCaro: Actually the Walking Dead is about zombies.

Sandy Alderson: Oh is that what it is? Zombies? Thanks. (laughing)

Joe DeCaro: When the season ended, you met with reporters at Citi Field, and at that time you said there would no preemptive offer to Jose Reyes and that you were going to let other teams set the market.

A few weeks later it was reported that you had an understanding with Jose that he would meet with you after he was done shopping and that you would have substantive negotiations with him at that time.

There’s been so much information and mis-information circulating about Jose Reyes that it’s become such a huge blur for Mets fans right now. I don’t know if you’ve kept up with the latest gossip, but apparently there’s a report generating some buzz about a potential Mets offer worth five years and $80 million for Jose Reyes.

Forget whether or not it’s fact or fiction — I’m leaning towards the latter — hypothetically speaking, if Jose Reyes came back to you with a five-year, $80 million offer from another team, could you and would you beat that offer if that’s what it took to re-sign him?

Also, does your front office consider Jose Reyes a franchise player?

Alderson: Let me start with your last question first: Do I consider him a franchise player? Yes. But a franchise player is only valuable as such if he is contributing to a winning franchise as opposed to simply acting as eye wash for a team that is not very good. So for me, franchise players are critically important — this goes back to the bonding that takes place with a handful of players on each team — you need those kinds of players to win. But ultimately, even a franchise player has to make a contribution to a winning team.

Now with respect to what we would do or not do with Jose, that’s hypothetical and it would be speculative for me to respond to that, and also very public, and I would prefer not to do that {laughing}. It’s fair to say that, in light of his status, at least in my mind, as a franchise player, that there’s a number that we would find acceptable. We’re very interested in retaining Jose.

As far as his coming back, it has never been my understanding that we would not negotiate until he had made all his rounds, until he got a good offer from somebody else, and then we got a chance to match it or get a discount from it. That’s never been my understanding. I do believe that if Jose really wants to be in New York after everything is said and done, he’ll talk to us. But I don’t know that we can rely on that. So our inactivity at this point, or the fact that we haven’t given him an offer, is not based on our confidence that when everything is said and done, he’s going to come back to us. I think it’s a combination of a lot of other things.

Right now, it’s not clear where his market will be. We’ve never wanted to be a stalking horse for somebody else. We’re sincere in our desire to have him back. But we’re just going to have to see what develops for him. Now the fact that nothing has materialized to date, doesn’t mean that something won’t tomorrow or the next day, I’m realistic enough to know that. But I also have a sense of what we can do and what would be beyond our ability to do.

And when I say beyond our ability, this doesn’t have anything to do with Bernie Madoff. This really has to do with our vision of where the team can be and what we need to be able to do over the next two-to-four years to create a sustainable, winning roster. I have said on many occasions, that what we need is some roster flexibility eventually that allows us the freedom from a roster standpoint to make some of these decisions that are going to be costly, but to be able to do them in a way that enables us to rationalize the overall roster and the overall payroll.

There’s so much that came out of my question I don’t know where to begin, but lets start with this and I’ll disect the rest of his reply to me throughout the day:

“A franchise player is only valuable as such if he is contributing to a winning franchise as opposed to simply acting as eye wash for a team that is not very good. “

Obviously I asked him whether Reyes was a franchise player based on the comment he made the day before while speaking to season ticket holders: “We want to have franchise players.”

Well first off, there was no hesitation when he said yes, that Reyes was a franchise player, but he didn’t stop there and threw in the eyewash line, which kind of reminds me of the old standby of “we didn’t win with him, so we can just as soon lose without him”.

What did you take out of his comment?

I’ve never been a proponent of that sort of argument because it hangs the blame for losing on one player – the best player – when losing and winning is actually a team effort. You can’t blame the star for being a star if all you surround him with is below average players and nobody to compliment him. Am I right or wrong here?

Don’t most championship caliber team build around their core players – by complimenting them with role players to fill in the missing pieces of the puzzle?

Anyway, I’ll have more to say later on.

Other sites that participated and blogged about the call were On the Black, Mets Police, and MetsBlog. There were a few other blogs as well, but as of this writing they hadn’t yet posted on it. I’ll try to update this as they do.

Visit Joe D. at Mets Merized Online

16 thoughts on “Sandy Alderson On If Jose Reyes Is A Franchise Player

  1. Joe

    This is great stuff. I spent some time on that link.

    It seems to me as John has repeatedly said that Jose is gone. He talks about flexibility and it just seems that at $100M you lose all flexibility when you sign Jose.

  2. Did anybody see Kernans article in the post the other day about Reyes rap song “No hay amigo” meaning I got no friends. His only friend is a dollar in his pocket. thats his words. Alderson is wise not expect a hometown discount. I guess the fans that supported him all these years arent his friends. Neither is the organization that paid him millions to stay home and nurse his tender hammies. Good riddance I say.

  3. Ray(2)

    I read about that a few weeks ago someplace. He did the song in the summer I think. Will have to look it up.

    I remember coming across this around the time John was writing that Jose is looking for the highest $$ and got skewered here for those comments.

  4. I was looking at the minor league blogs and must say our minors have some talent.

    We do not have much in AAA but we have 2 pitchers in AA ( Harvey/Familia) and Wheeler in A. There is also some other guy they are high on in St. Lucie and apparently we have some relief pitcher who has potential.

    I was also reading we have a catcher way down who can hit and given time might be a decent catcher.

    There are also some position players, most of which we know about already.

  5. 4. Dave. Check out young 2b/ss Jordanny Valdespin who split time between AA and AAA last year. 17/60/.297
    with 37 swipes and an .801 OPS. He still needs more seasoning as his walk total is low and his errors are high, but with his potential I see no reason to keep Jose (show me the dinero) around with his greedy gimpy ass. There is also a young 2b named Havens who has tons of potential but has experienced some back issues.


  7. Wow it sounds like Mr Sadecki is a true bigot. Well, hate monger you’ll enjoy your lilly white team with 11o losses won’t you. I guess you just hate it when latinos make some bucks while you continue to clean the gutters for minimum wage. One thing for sure Sadcki Jose won’t have to qworry about the white trash like you getting in his gaited hood.

  8. 7

    Where in Ray’s posts did he say anything about race? If you knew anything latino man Jordanny is also latino.

  9. Ray(5)

    I have heard of those two. For some reason Jordanny does not stick in my head. I have read about him for 2 years now. Havens is just injured. If I remember he cannot play ss and will look for a position. The items I have read say he doesn’t have the power to be moved to OF. Either way, he needs to stay healthy. Kinda like FMart.

  10. Interesting article from Adam Rubin on who is to blame on Reyes leaving the Mets, blaming Selig, the Wilpons, and Minaya. Essentially, Selig extending a lifeline to the Wilpons to keep the franchise even though they are losing huge amounts of money. Alderson said last night the Mets lost 70 million dollars. No time frame given but I don’t care what business your in, you can’t operate like that.

    The Mets should move on. Reyes was going for top dollar and he got it and Mets would not give it. The Mets were not going to win for awhile and Reyes wants to win now. Lets see what the Mets do from here. Tejada is your shortstop. I don’t like the idea of Murphy playing 2nd let alone any defensive position. I still think the Mets need to move on from Murphy as well. He can hit but the Mets need to play even more defense now than ever. I still think Havens will be the answer there with a new home grown infield of Tejada and Havens.

  11. Well, it looks like Jose is getting 6 years $111M from the Marlins.

    It also seems as though the team lost $70M last year. That was part of the excuse for not going after Jose. If your team sucks and you do not have a complete team do you wonder that you will lose money?

  12. As I said the love affair between Wilpons and selig has to end otherwise selig needs to step down

  13. 11. Thanks Dave for the assist, but that guy was not even latino. It was a bitter old Jew who likes to be troll and play games and hide behind different names. He used to post here as Chiti. Total loser.