Glenn H, reader of MetsBlog:
If free agency is Sandy Alderson’s only real option to acquire significant help for the lineup, do you think he is secretly hoping that the Mets lose just enough games so he won’t have to give up his first round draft pick next year? I know it is heresy to suggest, and nobody would ever admit to rooting against the Mets, but I can’t help and think that by trading Marlon Byrd and John Buck, and with Matt Harvey and David Wright on the sidelines, that one of the side benefits of playing the youngsters this month is that, by winning fewer games, it could have huge benefits for the future… particularly since the 2014 draft is projected to be very deep. Your thoughts?
Michael Baron, Contributor
The front office never aims to lose, nor do the managers or the players. There are careers and reputations at stake, and losing helps no one.
Regardless of the talent, expectations, and reality in the standings, they do believe in winning and giving themselves the best opportunity to do so on a daily basis. After all, they partially held onto Byrd at the trade deadline because they felt he gave them a better chance at a strong finish. They are aware of the importance of preserving players, and evaluating the players in the pipeline in light of the standings, and it’s clear that’s the aim in the final month of the season. But that’s not an effort to lose – rather, that’s having an eye on the bigger picture, a strategy most organizations employ even in winning seasons.
Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer
I agree with Mike. However, if it was the difference of one win here or there, I’m willing to bet Alderson would rather be on the negative side and not have to worry about draft pick compensation. He’s going to have interest in free-agent Shin-Soo Choo, I think. Choo fits in with a lot of their needs, especially considering the emergence of Juan Lagares’s glove. The Reds will likely make a qualifying offer to Choo, meaning he’ll cost a first-round pick… unless, of course, that pick is protected. I know what Mike is saying, and I agree. However, the table is set, the roster is what it is at this point, and given how hard he fought to keep his draft pick last year (with Michael Bourn) my guess is that Alderson would err on the side of “protected,” but likely wishes this was a non-issue…
By the way, here are the reverse standings entering play Friday, Sept. 6: