Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer
In regards to future payrolls, Mets GM Sandy Alderson told ESPN 98.7 FM, “I do believe it will go up if we’re able to generate the kind of revenue that will support that, and that’s why we have to win.”
The way I hear this, and the way I’ve always heard this, having listened to him every few months over the last few years, Alderson expects fans to start buying tickets when the team’s young pitching begins to finally deliver wins, at which point revenue will go up, at which point he’ll have more money to spend on payroll, which should help get more wins, which will increase revenue, which will continue to increase payroll, and so on, and so on… just like the Phillies did from the late ’90s through the last few years.
However, most fans and almost all radio hosts, columnists and reporters seem to skip the first step, hearing, “You have to come watch a bad team before we actually spend some money on players,” as ESPN’s Adam Rubin said Wednesday morning (ESPN, May 28).
I find it hard to believe Alderson expects fans to watch a bad team, which, as Rubin points out, is what lots of people think he is saying. )This is confirmed by a quick glance at the hashtag #Mets on Twitter.) However, I’m willing to bet Alderson believes his pitching prospects, specifically Noah Syndergaard, Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler, Jacob deGrom, Rafael Montero and Jenrry Mejia, among others, will create a fun, entertaining product worth coming to watch at Citi Field sooner, rather than later. And, the initial revenue generated from this bump in attendance will motivate additional spending.
This is what I hear, though it’s clear I’m in the minority. So, I’m hoping to interview Alderson at some point soon to try and better understand his comments, because it’s quite clear there is a total disconnect between what he’s saying and what most fans are hearing.