There are a lot of crazy things floating around this time of year. I heard this today and it made me laugh because there’s no chance it could have happened.
One report said the Mets could have gotten Joe Maddon as their manager after his decision to bolt the Tampa Bay Rays.
Maddon is a tremendous managerial talent, one of the best, and he would look great in the Mets dugout, but several variables combined to make that impossible.
First, they already have a manager in Terry Collins. Now, managers and coaches have been fired before while under contract, but the Mets hate the idea of paying a manager’s salary to two people at the same time.
More importantly, even had Maddon been available to them, as they wouldn’t have acted as quickly, or decisively, as the Cubs. Reportedly, Maddon was given a five-year, $25 million package, which would have been well out of their price range.
Maddon left the Rays because of their austerity program, evidenced by the departures of James Shields – who’ll likely leave Kansas City – and David Price. The Cubs’ payroll last year was $92 million, which isn’t in the stratosphere, but far more than the Rays’ $76 million.
The Cubs have shown a willingness to pursue free agents, something neither the Rays nor Mets are inclined to do.
The Mets have made steady progress over the past few years, and Collins deserves some credit. The expectations are high with the return of Matt Harvey, bounce-back seasons from David Wright and Curtis Granderson, and the continued development of Zack Wheeler and Jacob deGrom.
Given that, do they really want to start over with a new regime?
Maddon as a Met is a fun idea, but there are a lot of fun ideas this time of year. But, this one had no chance.