It's not easy to be the general manager of a Major League Baseball team. Managing payroll, signing free agents, trading players, hiring managers and coaches—all are part of the duties of the GM. But it's even tougher to be the general manager of a Major League Baseball team in New York. Brian Cashman of the New York Yankees has been in the GM seat since 1998, a truly remarkable feat considering the turnover in the rest of the sport.
The New York Mets, however, hired Sandy Alderson to be their GM just after the conclusion of the 2010 regular season. He replaced Omar Minaya, who will forever be linked to free-agent busts such as Luis Castillo and Jason Bay. Alderson was brought on to try and right the ship in Queens, given hardly any budget to work with.
It's been two full seasons under Alderson now, and the Mets haven't exactly been the cream of the crop in the NL East (they have finished 4th in both seasons, winning a total of 151 games). And while Alderson does not publicly appear to be in danger of losing his job, one has to wonder how much longer he can survive in New York if positive results do not become the trend soon.
Given the low amount of payroll he has to work with, here are some moves that can help Alderson retain his role with the Mets. He needs to avoid the big, splashy free-agent signings (a la Mr. Minaya) and make smart moves that will help the club both short and long-term, all while being budget-conscious.