Wilpons Hire Sandy Alderson as New Headmaster
Evan Pritchard October 27, 2010
The Wilpons, the meddlesome owners of the New York Mets, fired Omar Manaya and failed to renew Jerry Manuel’s contract at the end of 79-83 season, a year that revealed that most of the Mets’ contracts were overpriced. Under Manaya, the team payed top dollar for Manaya’s old friends, guys with hidden injuries, attitude problems, and other issues. That seemed to work in 2006 when everyone played above parr, but in 2010, the honeymoon was over, and both new and old overpaid guys, ticking time bombs all, self destructed. As Gary Coleman would say, “The wheels fell off the wagon.” It was the end of the Mets as we knew them.
The Mets were one big dysfunctional family, with Omar Manaya as the uber-uncle and headmaster of the school for wayward boys. Former Amazine articles have revealed the far-reaching biographical interconnections between countless Mets players since 2006, thanks to their connections with Manaya. Many of them were rags to riches stories; guys who grew up in poverty in the Dominican Republic, donating much of their, excuse me, our, hard earned money, to poor communities in the DR. It was heartwarming at the time, but now we see the cost of such nepotism: A losing record and an entire team on the DL. As Confucius would say, “Where was the civil service test?”
The Mets spent like the Yankees and behaved like, well, the Mets. I am okay with knowing that the dollars I spent on high priced Mets tickets went to make the DR a safer place to live, but then I learned that a lot of their/our money was turned over to huckster Bernie Madoff, for him to invest without any oversight. To make Bernie Madoff’s life a safer place for him to live, I suppose. But a fool and his money are soon parted, and now the money’s all gone, and the Mets have to rise from the debt like the Phoenix from the ashes. There has to be a morning-aerobic-workout-after.
Now the much-chastised Wilpons have gone to the other extreme, hiring 62-year-old Sandy Alderson as the new GM. While the old Mets were as far from the Yankees’ corporate culture as possible, the new Mets, under CEO type Alderson, who speaks the language of Bud Selig better than he does Quisquaian, are going to have to act a lot more like the Yankees, but without the money. That could be a mixed blessing. They may lose that funky, most-elaborate-high -fives-in-baseball groove, but they might actually win more games than they lose.
Alderson has previously served as the general manager of the Oakland A’s, the chief executive officer of the San Diego Padres and the vice president of baseball operations for Major League Baseball. In the language of corporate culture, this move seems to suggest that Bud Selig wants to keep a close eye on the Boys of Citifield. It also will make it difficult for the Wilpons to interfere with the progress of the team and its players. Is Alderson an “axe-man,” just hired to fire everybody and deal with the law suits pending with people like K-Rod? Or will he be the new headmaster, sent in to infuse discipline into the unruly students of the game? Time will tell. According to the Associated Press, ” The Mets could announce the hiring of Alderson as early as Friday, the off-day between Games 2 and 3 of the World Series.” I have a feeling that by next October, everything we now know about the Mets as a team will be irrelevant! The Mets is dead; long live the Mets!