“WILPON’S FOLLY” A MUST READ FOR METS FANS

 

 

Lots of Mets news today to look at and I want get to it quick so I can read Howard Megdal’s new book “Wilpon’s Folly. Megdal has done what no other journalist s has attempted, he has conducted a full investigation into Wilpon’s involvement with Bernie Madoff and how December 11, 2008, the day Madoff was shown to be a world class thief and the worst day of Fred Wilpon’s life could rival the June 15, 1977 as the worst day in NY Mets history. After I finish reading “Wilpon’s Folly” I’ll have more on the book but if you are a Mets fan and want to know the TRUTH about Madoff and what the Wilpon’s knew and when they knew it and where all this will leave our beloved Mets, you really need to get this book.

Sandy Alderson has been named to International Talent Committee that was formed to study if MLB should institute a draft of International players. Just one step closer to the Commissioner’s office for Alderson

What’s this? The Mets are looking at dealing for Gio Gonzalez? It would be a feather in Alderson’s cap to pull this one off and if he feels parting with Jon Niese, Ike Davis and a minor leaguer or two is worth it, it still may not be enough to land Gonzalez.

Wayne Hagin, we hardly knew ye. Looks like Hagin’s days as Mets radio man are over. Hagin never clicked with the fan base because we Mets fans are very provincial when it comes to announcers.  I’ve met Hagin a few times on the 7 train going back to the city after a Mets game and found him not only a gentleman but a great storyteller as well, but all that just didn’t translate into the radio booth during games. A great hire to join Howie Rose in the radio booth would be Boog Sciambi.

I’m a little late with this and I apologize as you need to check out Ed Marcus and Kerel Cooper’s video’s of Tuesdays Mets Christmas Party and the Q & A’s with Sandy Alderson, Justin Turner, Daniel Murphy and Jon Niese. Yes that’s me asking Alderson about the catching situation.

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I’M A BIPOLAR METS FAN

It has taken me all day to put a post together about yesterday’s Mets Christmas Party that myself and other Mets bloggers were honored to be invited to. The reason it’s tough writing today is that this organization has pulled at every emotions a person can have, love, hate, compassion, pride all of these feelings swirl in my head when it comes to the New York Mets.

All of the financial mumbo jumbo brings out the hate in me. I hate Bernie Madoff, I hate the Skill Sets for getting involved with this rat bastard and not having the god damn street smarts that every good son of the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn is born with. I hate with a fucking passion that the Mets have become a joke to the main stream media and to fans of other teams who have taken Mets bashing to the bully level. The main stream media in this city has been busy destroying the organization and no doubt the owners of this team have given them plenty of ammunition to bash them, but to see these jackals mingle amongst themselves having a grand old time at Citi Field as the get ready to compete with each other on who can write the best ”Mets sucks” column puts me in a rage. I hate that the owners treat the fan base like idiots. I’m no John Kenneth Galbraith but I can figure out the more loans you take out to pay your bills, the more broke you really are. Someday soon JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and the other 29 owners of MLB are going get fed up and chase the Wilpon’s like Colangelo chased Looie Dumps in A Bronx Tale. It infuriates the shit out of me that the Skill Sets just keep adding debt on to debt and insist on feeding us a line of horseshit about the minority owners who will be riding down Roosevelt Avenue on white horse with millions of dollars in their saddle bags to save them. The Wilpon’s are beyond saving. There are some outstanding people who work for the New York Mets and I have had the privilege of meeting them. From the media relations folks and the marketing and ticket sales and services people who work unbelievably hard at their jobs trying to sell the Mets brand on and off the field, when you see how hard they work and how long a day they put in, you get a tremendous appreciation into what goes into running a major league sports team, a job that would be tough enough in this city without all the turmoil that ownership is presently enduring.

So as the hate wears of that’s when the love starts, as I mention I love how the folks who work for the team do their jobs and do so with pride and professionalism, especially Danielle Parrillo, Director of Communications and Shannon Forde, Director of Media Relations.  I love hanging around with my fellow Mets bloggers at the events we get invited to. We all come from diverse backgrounds as Mets fans and bloggers and we all write from different angles but we all have one main thing in common, we love the Mets and want this organization to succeed.

As ridiculous as this may seem, I have some compassion for the Skill Sets. Yesterday I was venting to one of the Mets front office folks on how I wish the Wilpon’s would just sell and get the hell out of my Mets fan life. The response I got was “Fred and Jeff would sell their homes and live in Citi Field if that was the only way they could keep the team”.  As we finished up our Q & A with Sandy Alderson, as he was leaving our group I went over to him to ask what he thought would happen on the season finale of “Homeland”, as we chatted about what we thought the biggest cliffhanger would be, none other than Jeff Wilpon joined us. That’s right me, Sandy Alderson and Jeff Wilpon. Whoda thunk it? Wilpon was asking us about the show as he’d never seen it so we discussed the premises of it with him. When our little quorum broke up, I looked over at Jeff and said to myself how sad and beaten down the guy looked. I thought back to what was told to me about how he and his father would sell everything to keep this team but the look and demeanor of the guy was of one who knew the end was near. For the first time ever, I felt sorry for him, well maybe for a minute. You and I know this will not end well for the Skill Sets. I’ve yet to read anything from people who are savvy in dealing with all this financial information (your main guy for this should be Howard Megdal, in fact if the Skill Sets were smart they’d hire Howard as a consultant to help them figure out an exit strategy here)  on how the Wilpon’s can save their ownership of the team and with John Harper’s piece in the NY Daily News today you can see it will be sooner more than later when the Skill Sets will have to surrender control of the Mets.

When that day happens I won’t be rejoicing. I’ll be happy that they will have to sell and that an owner with capital will come in (I am just very very nervous about Cablevision and  Jim Dolan buying the team) and hopeful it will lift the pall that sits stagnant over Citi Field but I’ll feel a bit sad for the Wilpon’s as this will be a crushing blow to them, losing the Mets. See I’m not a total prick.

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FREDDY SKILLS: UNCENSORED

After reading Jeffery Tobin’s piece in the New Yorker, which by the way was the best article  I’ve ever read on Freddy Skill Sets and Uncle Saul Katz and how they’ve went from a couple of shmucks from Bensonhurst to being a couple of schmucks from a gated community in Nassau County , it hit every emotion I have about being a Mets fan.

I laughed at Freddy gushing over his “Ebbets Field” and not having the smarts to realize that the majority of Mets fans hate the design and the Brooklyn Dodger influence of the ball park.  I was angered by his quotes about his best players. David Wright, whether you or Fred think he is not a superstar, has done more for this franchise on a positive level since he came up than anyone in the whole Mets organization. A few years back, Keith Hernandez mentioned on SNY that David needs to learn to say know to all the appearances he was making to promote the team as it just adds to the wear and tear of the season and is not worth it when rest is needed to stay fresh for the season. But Wright’ make up is he can’t say no to a sick child in a hospital, or to a military vet in a VA hospital or a school where he can have a positive influence on kids. This past winter, I attended the Mets Christmas party that was held for some inner city kids. It was one of those unbelievably cold winter days and here was Wright taking off his Santa Claus suit to come over to talk to myself and the other Mets bloggers in attendance. As cold as it was outside, Wright was dripping with sweat as that Santa Suit was stifling hot and he wore it until every kid came up to him to receive a Christmas gift . When I greeted Wright with a handshake I said to him “Is there anything you don’t do around here” and he replied “this isn’t work, this is fun, just to see the kid’s smile makes it worth it” We then began asking a few question and the one response  and image that stuck with me was that of a sweaty, tired David Wright leaning on a wall talking about his accomplishments as a Met saying “all I have to my name as a Met is NL East title and that’s not enough”

So when Freddy Skill Sets says about Wright, “He’s a really good kid, A very good player, not a superstar” I find that totally offensive. Last season I wrote that I felt Wright should approach the Skill Sets and demand a trade. I felt he needed to go to a better baseball environment where smart baseball people were in charge and rich owners just sat back and mined their own business. I pictured Wright on the Cardinals, Red Sox or Giants teams that are on solid ground and excelling as not the main cog in the engine but one of the pistons. So I guess that means I think like Freddy, that Wright is a very good player not a superstar, well on the Mets he’s a superstar because he has never, ever embarrassed this franchise and everything he does on and off the field is to promote the Mets in a positive light, which is an a near impossible task. No one in ownership has ever done iota of good for this franchise than Wright has done and for Freddy Skill Sets to disrespect Wright like he did in this article is totally classless.  

Do you know how much money and how many years Jose Reyes wants in his next contract? No you don’t and neither do I and neither does anyone else. Reyes has said that he wants to remain a Met for his whole career, during a media gathering at Cit Field right before spring training.  Reyes has made Long Island his permanent home. He has moved his parents from the Dominican Republic here to live with him, his wife and his kids. Jose Reyes loves being a Met and loves being a New Yorker, so where does Freddy get this idea that Reyes is looking for a “Carl Crawford contract”? Reyes is not getting a 7 year deal from the Mets or anyone else. The highest I can see for Jose is 5/$100mil but now with the diss from Freddy, I’m sure Reyes will look for the best deal he can get. Freddy’s big mouth might have just cost the Mets a hometown discount.

Carlos Beltran had to battle through a gauntlet of assholes to get his knee operated on and then rehabs his ass off to get back on the field to earn his paycheck. A lot of players after getting dicked around by management over a medical procedure would take their sweet time and come back when they thought it was best for them and not the team.  The thought never came into Carlos Beltran’s mind. He has not only worked his ass off to get back on the field, he’s changed position (unlike a certain diva shortstop in the Bronx who refuses to move off a position he hasn’t play well at in about three years) and has been giving the team a solid bat and adjusting to his new position flawlessly and has helped both his replacements, Angel Pagan and Jason Pridie with instructions on how to play the tough centerfield of Citi Field and for all this, he hears Freddy Skill Set say what a dick he was to sign him. Enjoy Carlos Beltran for the next month he is as good as gone from the Mets.

Just when you think there was no more earth for Freddy to scorch I’m sure his statement about his “shitty team” and that’s how “lousy clubs play” has gone over well with the ticket sales department and the public relations group.

From spending some time with the people behind the scenes at City Field these statements are an out and out punch in the gut to those folks who work hard and try and try and try to make this team relevant, to the point that people would actually spend money to come out to Citi Field.  Is Fred this delusional that he thinks he can call his team “lousy and shitty” and have these folks spin it positively? How does a ticket rep for the Mets call a prospective season ticket purchaser today and convince them to but Mets tickets? How does the P.R. staff come up with an ad campaign to get you to come out to Citi Field to see the Mets?  Freddy and Saul can spew old man stupidity all day and night, I’ll still go out to Citi Field this summer to watch the team, I’m sure Freddy and Saul laugh about a schmuck like me and that’s cool ,they can laugh now but I’ll be laughing later when Irv Picard beats their dumb ass in court and they have to sell the team and I’ll still being coming to Citi Field and rooting for my favorite baseball team and Freddy and Saul will be looking for that two-family house in Bensonhurst so Freddy can live upstairs and Saul down the basement. Just like old times.

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LUUUUUUUUUUUUISSSSSSSS COME OUT TO PLAYYYYYYYYY!

I agree 100 % with Terry Collins that Luis Castillo should have gotten to camp early since his job is on the line. You would think a guy who the majority of Mets fans look at with distain and a big part of the failures of past management knowing that there are three guys lining up every morning in St Lonesome, auditioning for the manager to be the next Mets 2nd base Idol. No matter which side of the Castillo fence you fall on, every Mets fan has to agree that at this stage of his baseball career, Castillo cannot just waltz into camp with a cavalier attitude that was tolerated in years past in this organization.  Whereas Castillo would have been met with and hug and a laugh by management in the past he will now be greeted with a “Where the fuck have you been”? It’s about time.

My doubts about Terry Collins are starting to lessen. When I met him at the Mets Christmas Party the first questioned I had for him was about getting this team to be more aggressive and passionate and to stop being patsies for the division. I told Collins in my opinion, every team in the NL East thinks of the Mets as a bunch of chumps, how do you change that mind set? Collins assured me that was one of the first things he wanted to change. He tried not to disparage his predecessor but he said he agreed with me about the team allowing the opposition to intimate them and it will be a big part of his job to change that immediately.  From reading John Harper’s story today, it looks like Collins has started his one for all all for one campaign:

Indeed, the new manager of the Mets thinks it’s important to instill some toughness, some brothers-in-arms spirit, in his ballclub. Remember the famous Chase Utley take-out slide of Ruben Tejada last September? The one the Mets took without retaliation?

Collins wouldn’t have stood for such a passive response.

“In Philly there would have been a fight,” he said Friday, “no doubt about it.”

Collins made it clear he wasn’t looking to criticize Jerry Manuel when I asked him Friday how he would have handled such a situation. In fact, he said a manager always walks a fine line on such matters, as not all players respond well to being put in a position where retaliation is expected.

“But there’s still an unwritten code about how to protect your teammates,” Collins said. “So I do believe in situations like that, there’s a right way to handle it.

“And that’s something that starts right here in spring training. That’s going to be part of my message on Monday when I speak to the team. We’re going to bring a team together and we’re going to watch each other’s backs.”

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MORE REPORTING FROM THE METS CHRISTMAS PARTY

Four of my fellow bloggers have documented the Malta Mets summit from Tuesday and all are great reads so go get a cup of coffee and a little nosh and enjoy:

Greg Prince of Faith and Fear in Flushing

Rob Castellano of Alderson (Amazin’)  Avenue

Jim Mancari of Mets Merized Online

Matt Artus Always Amazin’

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“DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM” I’M JEFFEY SKILL SETS DAMN IT

Busy busy day as we have our  Christmas Party today at work so I’m knocking out something quick  as the Salsa music will be full blast soon  but remember tonight at 9PM its’ Pro Baseball Central with myself and Joe McDonald and we have plenty to talk about in the world of Mets especially that it looks like I’m not the only who has question the Skill Sets cash flow troubles as Jeffey had to answer a ton of questions yesterday as the Mets were showing off their latest acquisition Frankie Rodriguez.

 

I love this quote from Prince Jeffey about the cash on hand and whether the Skill Sets are broke:

 

["How is that possible? We have other money. Just because you guys don't know how much money we have, we have other money and other funds outside of (the Mets).

 

"It's called diversification."]

 

So according to Jeffey, losing a half billion ain’t shit as long as the new ballpark has turnstiles and we Mets fans line up for tickets the Skill Sets will still be farting through silk. Now the follow up question should have been “Do you have enough coin to improve your team”? Ok big mouth put up or shut up. I’ve come to grips that Manny will not be wearing a Mets uni but the big need is two starting pitchers so I expect to see a press conference soon to announce the signing of Derek Lowe. If it takes 4yr/60-65 mil then do it! Then get Randy Wolf for the 5th starter spot and I swear I’ll lay off my ball breaking ways for at least a week. In fact I’ll volunteer to run a 50/50 raffle at all homes games to raise more capital.

 

Meet the challenge Jeffey, prove to me that you can walk the walk!!!!!!

 

Again tonight at 9PM PRO BASEBALL CENTRAL will be live so join us and call in (646) 595-4462

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