We at the REAL DIRTY METS are always trying to unearth the juiciest Mets-related rumors. We heard one the other day that was just so wild that we felt we had to corner the team's general manager Sandy Alderson so that he could quash the rumor.
RDM: Sandy. I know this is going to sound crazy but we've heard that the Mets are considering not playing at all in the 2014 major league season. That's absurd and we just want you to assure the fans that this is not the case.
SA: You know my record as a "straight shooter" so I won't lie to you. This is something that has been discussed and is still being looked at.
RDM: But why in the world would you do that?
SA: The proponents of this idea - and I'm not going to comment as to who those persons are - have outlined the benefits of doing this. Now if you have a moment I'll touch on just some of their reasoning.
RDM: We've got all the time in the world.
SA: Alright then. #1 - Even though we have kept this a strict secret it is the case that our ownership has, in the last few years, suffered from some how-shall-I-say "financial setbacks." Some investments haven't panned out quite the way they were intended so that, bottom line, we are looking for ways to streamline our expenses. In other words it is damned expensive to run a major league team. You know about the millions in salary but did you ever add up the cost of flying all over the country all the time and housing the players in fancy hotels? We're not riding Greyhound buses to Pittsburgh and we're not staying at the local Motel 6, you know.
RDM: Yes, there are expenses....but...
SA: Now we finally have it down to where we are paying David Wright big bucks and Jon Niese a modest salary for a major league pitcher. But even if we pay everyone else the minimum salary (and yes, we've considered that) it still adds up to a huge chunk of change. The savings we can accrue by not playing for a year could put us in great shape for the future.
RDM: This is incredible.
SA: Now, on to some other reasons. Our two biggest stars are the captain David Wright and super young pitching phenom Matt Harvey. They are both highly motivated bulldog type players who would hate to miss a single game. Harvey has decided to try and avoid having Tommy John surgery and hopes to slowly rehabilitate his precious right throwing arm. Wouldn't that arm be stronger if his next scheduled regular season game was in April of 2015 rather than just six months from now?
And while David has rushed himself back onto the field already we just think that if could just stay off that hammie for perhaps 160 more games or so he'll be ready for that playoff push a year and half from now.
Meanwhile any of our other pitchers who might be considering Tommy John surgery could have it right now - get it over with, so to speak - and they'd all be set for our next full season. Maybe we can even get a group rate discount by Dr. Andrews if we bring him a bunch of balky elbows.
RDM: I suppose that is "thinking outside of the box."
SA: That's our version of Moneyball here in New York. And along the way we can continue to put it to Ruben Tejada. He thinks he got off easy just being banished to Vegas for half a season. Let's let him play in the desert for one more year. Bet he won't be saying no to extra BP or fielding practice after that.
RDM: So you'd just shutter CitiField for a year?
SA: No, no, not at all. That ballpark is still an attraction and it will be open for 81 dates in 2014.
RDM: But without the Mets playing?
SA: RIght. People can come to the park. We'll even reduce parking rates a bit. They can visit the Shake Shack and Keith's Grill. Venders will be in the stands. And we'll have all our normal promotions with some exciting new ones thrown in. We can do banner day without a time constraint. Maybe we can do an Old Timers Day and let the geezers play five innings (if they can last that long). We'll do that sleepover event - maybe for a whole weekend. And certainly we can figure out a few people to make bobbleheads of.
RDM: But what will there be to see?
SA: We'd probably be able to get the Vegas 51's play a few series here. The fans will get to see future Mets like Syndegaard and Montero perform. Maybe we can let Binghamton play some of their double-A games here. And we can sign up for the MLB package and show interesting games from around the majors on our jumbotron screen.
RDM: Surely the National League won't permit you to just not play.
SA: What can they do? We don't show up and we take a forfeit. Regrettably we'll go 0-162 for the season but even there there's a silver lining. That record will likely be even worse than the Astros' so we'd be in line for the 1st pick of the next baseball draft. What fan wouldn't mind blowing off a season if it gives us a crack at the next Mike Trout, or at least the next Bryce Harper?
RDM: So this really could happen?
SA: Yes it might. But if worse comes to worse we can always bag the idea and play.
The TRDM Di-JEST will be a weekly feature here at TRDM. Everyone needs a little laugh here and there and Larry does a great job of playing on the emotions that many Mets fans are experiencing. --- TRS86