Matthew Cerrone, Lead WriterIn regards to whether he is ‘punting,’ in 2013, and only thinking of future seasons, Sandy Alderson told WFAN earlier this week:
“I’m not that young, I’ve got to live through another year, and I don’t want to have an also-ran either. We’re gonna put something together that gives us a chance. And that’s our goal between now and the beginning of spring training. Will we knock your socks off with some high profile free agent? Probably not. But, we are getting close to the point where will be able to do that.”
This week’s trade that sent fan-favorite R.A. Dickey to the Blue Jays for two top prospects hopefully put Sandy Alderson’s plan in to focus for the remaning people who were confused about what he’s doing here. The short-term goal is to field a team with ‘a chance,’ and he’ll do that with the roster he has (plus another so-so outfielder or two). This will frustrate some people, but – at this point – especially after the trade – it should be obvious to everyone that he has his eyes set on 2014 and beyond.
This is what John Sickels of Minor League Ball said in his report on the Mets earlier this week:
“This organization has made enormous strides of late, and the addition of d’Arnaud and RHP Noah Syndergaard is frosting on the cake. The obvious strength is pitching, and they have a lot of it. Both Wheeler and Syndergaard are potential top-of-the-rotation starters, backing up the now-graduated Matt Harvey who was everything that could have been expected last summer and more. Hard-throwers dot the rosters.”
I bet Alderson fantasizes about winning a World Series in the next five years with a rotation of Jon Niese, Harvey, Wheeler, Syndergaard and Dillon Gee, all home grown, all under team control. And if one of them, or one of Jeurys Familia, Michael Fulmer, Domingo Tapia, Luis Mateo or Rafael Montero, fails or doesn’t step up, he can sign a free agent or two to fill in (considering David Wright and Niese are the only players on the current roster signed to long-term deals). Like the San Francisco Giants have done the last three years (during which they’ve won two World Series with essentially the same pitching staff, but two totally different lineup), this sort of scenario means Alderson can mix and match his offense based on trends, his budget, farm system and the free agent and trade markets. Time will tell if it pans out right, but for the first time in a long, long time, I can legitimately look down the line and see a pitching staff I expect to have confidence in.