Here they are your 1979 NEW YORK METS…………………
Marc Carig who covers the Mets for NEWSDAY after working the Highlanders beat asked a question on Twitter the other day about the Mets of 2012 and how they compared to the Mets of the late 1970’s. The late 70’s had the same feeling of despair and by 1979 Shea Stadium had become a place Mets fans avoided (attendance of 7,000 a game were the norm back then) The negativity from Mets fans still centered over the trading of Tom Seaver to the Reds in 1977. That alone makes the late 70’s far far worse in my eyes than what’s happening now in Flushing.
There are some stark parallels between the 70’s and what’s going on now in Flushing, ownership was a problem then as it is now. In October of 1975, Joan Whitney Payson died and nearly took the Mets franchise with her to the beyond. Her husband Charles Payson wanted no part of running the Mets so it was left to his daughter Lorinda de Roulet and the dastardly rat bastard M. Donald Grant. Where Mrs. Payson had no trouble spending money on the team,( she wanted desperately to bring Willie Mays back to NYC after see acquired the Mets she made an offer to Horace Stoneham to name his price for the contract of Mays. In one of the few times that Stoneham was lucid he turned the offer down) Grant held on to every penny.
Today the Mets biggest problem is ownership and its lack of financial resources, not just to add talent but to make mistakes disappear like Jason Bay. The team is in a free fall right now that has a very 70’s feel t to it and what makes this second half gag job so bad is 2013 looks no better. Why?, because no one in the Mets ownership group can come out and tell the truth about the teams financial status. Management wants its most prize possession, its season ticket holders, to make a financial investment in the team in the form of purchasing tickets but won’t let them know what they are buying into, so why would anyone buy in?
The biggest problem with this ownership is their lack of transparency as opposed to the 70’s when we knew that M. Donald Grant was a miserable pick and he had no problem living up to that reputation. This lack of being truthful with the fan base has turned Sandy Alderson into Fred Astaire. Whenever Alderson is interviewed, the first question is always about payroll and what it will be next season, at this point is when Alderson pulls out the straw hat and cane and does the ol’ Wilpon soft shoe.
I’ve never understood why the Skill Sets could never be honest with their fan base? You would think that someone in the organization would try to get them to change the way they disseminate their message? I’ll give the Skill Sets this much, as inept and awfully clandestine they are in conducting their baseball business , they haven’t reached M.Donald Grant status yet on my despicable meter but knowing them they’ll keep trying.
If you haven’t read Jason Fry’s piece on the Faith and Fear site please go read it now. Hopefully someone in the organization will show this to Freddy Skill Sets and try to get him to realize the Mets fans may be leaving the piss off stage of fandom to the apathetic stage of who gives a shit?
I don’t know how Terry Collins does it night in and night out trying to put a positive spin on the ineptness of his team. Collins is treading on dangerous ground here going from a guy protecting his players to looking like he has no clue. Bobby Ojeda has been as big a Collins supporter as there is but last night even he couldn’t take it anymore calling out the players for sitting out claiming they’re tired. Ojeda went on a rant about how that’s the difference between a winning team and a losing team. He was 1,000 % on point. For once I’d love for Collins to come out and say that he’s let his team know that the difference between being a winning team and a losing team is desire. Right now the Mets seem to have no desire to finish strong, something Collins has been preaching during this second half slide. It’s not throwing his players under the bus; it’s holding them accountable by calling them out for playing lousy baseball.