Last month, Sandy Alderson said the Mets would have a higher payroll than the $87 million he estimated the team paid in 2013.
However, while talking to reporters in Orlando yesterday, he lowered the 2013 number to $85 million.
“It’s very hard to predict where we’re going to come in,” Alderson said. “There may be some opportunities that arise for us that may be unanticipated and we maybe have a chance to pursue. I just can’t tell you exactly where we’re going to be. I don’t want to set up expectations one way or another.”
Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer
Dec. 9: This seems low. I try not to judge payroll, because it’s hardly the end-all, be-all to winning. Also, I’d rather wait to see where it comes in at the end of year, not the early part of the off-season. That said, most MLB teams will say payroll is a direct reflection of revenue, with most teams spending around half of revenue on talent. Forbes estimated $250 million in revenue for the Mets, but anyone I’ve asked repeatedly says that’s high (as are more of the Forbes numbers for MLB teams). So, I’ve had MLB money guys say $100 million or so it reasonable for the Mets. Why is it likely to be lower than that? I don’t know. It could be strategy, it could be a bluff, it could be financial pressure, it could be preference… I’m sure Alderson will be asked before the end of the Winter Meetings, so stay tuned…
Michael Baron, Contributor
Dec. 8: This is notable because – earlier in the off-season – Alderson used $87 million as the baseline for 2014. It’s not clear if he was lowering his expected payroll projection for 2014 or not. It certainly didn’t sound like a hard cap or any kind of goal. I can see why someone might hear this and think he’s saying the team is lowering payroll for 2014. However, it’s also possible he was simply saying it will be above $85 million, and not the higher figure that he floated earlier this winter, yet still be in the ballpark projected.