New York Mets: 5 Most Meaningless Statements Management Has Fed Fans
For all the credit Terry Collins and Sandy Alderson were given early in the season for their business-like approach and holding players accountable for their miscues, it seems it was all rhetoric after all.
Mets managers and GM's in the past have been criticized for their poor press conferences and postgame address, but Collins seems to be struggling where it really matters: on the field.
With the Mets falling further and further down the standings with each day, the words of Collins and Alderson are becoming increasingly hollow.
Here is a ranking of the top five empty promises and meaningless statements that have come from management over the past calendar year.
5. Sandy Alderson: "I Don't Think We Know What Our Budget Is Going to Be"
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On Wednesday Sandy Alderson was on the Mike Francesa show on 660 WFAN (here is the link), and it was pretty entertaining.
Alderson is a very articulate man who seems to have a plan on how to return this team to prominence.
Say what you want about Francesa, but the man does great interviews because when players or executives give him indirect answers, he is not afraid to narrow down the question.
This makes for great interviews with people that are notorious for not relinquishing much information.
When asked about improving the team with a preset payroll, Alderson answered by basically saying management does not now what the payroll will be in 2013 and they have not had those conversations.
I find it incredibly hard to believe that a small group of millionaires would not find time before September to give the General Manager the parameters of his payroll for the next season.
Obviously, nobody wants to show their cards to the public, but it would be nice if he could inform the fans that either the payroll will be decreasing once again or they intend on being contenders in 2013 and they are looking to splurge a bit.
4. Collins Regarding Frank Francisco, "He's Going to Get Better"
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In the first year of his two-year contract, Frank Francisco has been abysmal. He has been effective in the past, posting ERA's of 3.13, 3.83, 3.76 and 3.55 in the past four seasons, but he has not appeared like a closer this season.
I don't think there has been any sign of improvement, and I would not be inclined to say better days are ahead for the enigmatic closer, considering he has allowed eight runs over his past four innings.
Terry Collins has seen a lot of baseball, and there is no way he could truly believe Francisco will actually improve.
He has been battered by virtually every team this season and is one of the primary reasons for the calamity that is the Mets' bullpen.
Unfortunately, he is signed through 2013, and it is hard to imagine any team will be looking to sign a 33-year-old closer that has the penchant of completely losing his composure on the mound.
If the Mets can not find a taker for his services, he needs to be demoted to a smaller role next season so the team has learned from this mistake.
Collins Regarding Johan Santana, "I Think (Johan's) Shoulder Is Fine"
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After Johan Santana's June 1st no-hitter against the St. Louis Cardinals in which he threw a career-high 134 pitches, Terry Collins appeared extremely distressed about allowing his ace to throw that amount of pitches while recovering from serious shoulder injury.
Well, it appears Collins was right to be concerned, considering since the no-hitter Santana has been atrocious, posting a 3-7 record with an 8.27 ERA.
Yes, he did post three terrific outings prior to injuring his ankle against the Chicago Cubs on July 6th.
But when he was activated from the disabled list, something was not right.
He tied his career-low in innings pitched in a game by recording five outs against Atlanta while allowing eight runs on August 11, and followed that up by allowing six runs in five innings against the Washington Nationals.
The Mets insisted that there was no physical issues, but it has been clear throughout his career that Johan is only ineffective when he is injured.
He has too much pride to use it as an excuse, and that's commendable, but there was a reason for his struggles. I believe Collins was aware that he was not 100 percent but allowed Santana the opportunity to pitch through it.
2. Collins Regarding Perception of Team: "We Have Not Packed It In"
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On the same day that Alderson appeared on the air with Mike Francesa, so did manager Terry Collins (here is the link).
He is a great interview as well, because he does admit to seeing problems on the team and is not afraid to address them.
When asked about the perception that the team has "packed it in," a common belief among teams that are miles out of playoff contention, Collins said that "perception is reality", but that is not the case.
Well, that last part is debated.
How can the team that appeared so resilient in April, May and June suddenly find a one-run deficit to be too difficult to overcome?
The listless offense is bad enough to watch, but Mike Baxter being forced out at second on a blooper to the center fielder is a sign that the team has its eyes set on the season ending.
Either Terry Collins is great at lying or this team is not talented enough to become motivated by his postgame scoldings.
1. Alderson: "We Think We Still Have Lots of Good Baseball in Front of Us"
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This is the most egregious statement of them all.
While speaking with Adam Rubin of ESPN New York following the July 31 trade deadline in which the Mets failed to acquire a single player, a very interesting dialogue followed.
Alderson admitted the Mets' rapid descent in the standings played a part in their inactivity at the deadline, but they were constantly looking for ways to upgrade the team.
While speaking about potentially trading Scott Hairston, Alderson said, "I think there's a lot of value in finishing well over .500. I think those things create a perception."
That statement is certainly true, although it does not apply to the Mets at this point.
Alderson then went on to say, "We didn't move players off the team for a reason. We think we still have lots of good baseball in front of us."
For anybody that has watched the trends of this team since the All-Star break, they know that this club is closer to surpassing the 1962 Mets than the 2012 Washington Nationals.
If Alderson is watching the club as closely as us, he surely was not speaking the truth when he made that statement.
Obviously, he is not going to publicly bash his own club, but it would be nice if he said something such as, "this team has not played well for an extended period of time and we must explore all avenues in order to find the winning formula."
That's just me being an arm-chair GM though, sorry.