Voice Of The Fan: Mets Ownership

FLUSHING, NY - FEBRUARY 12: New York Mets owne...

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Since the 2009 season was a complete bust for the Mets and there hasn’t been much to get excited about since May, I decided to try something new during this downtime for Mets fans. I’m going to run some posts that highlight opinions from other Mets fan like me. I may ask other Mets fans that have blogs of their own but I decided to start by asking some of the fans that frequently leave comments here.

Everyone is welcome to leave comments on this site but I wanted to put the spotlight on some of the fans that really make this site fun for me to write. If you feel that you’re up to the task of being in the spotlight, contact me and we’ll work something out. I wanted to start with Robin Schwartz, whom you know as RobinTheBoyWonderingWTF in the comments here.

Robin has had some choice comments about Mets ownership so I wanted him to have this forum to himself on the topic. Here’s the question that I asked Robin:

It feels like there’s a serious leadership problem with Jeff Wilpon running the Mets. Do you think it’s possible for the Mets to have a sustained period of success while the Wilpons own the team?

And here’s Robin’s response:

As a long time and very often suffering fan of the New York Mets, I have experienced all of the owners of this team. From the effervescent former part owner of the New York Giants , Mrs. Joan Payson, her hapless daughter Linda ,the  Doubleday-Wilpon tandem and today’s Wilpon family ownership.

It was apparent at some point that Fred Wilpon and Doubleday had different approaches to running a baseball team. Doubleday seemed more concerned with winning and having a good time, and Wilpon seemed more concerned with public image and setting up his son Jeff as the new man in charge. It seems that money from Daddy was all Jeff needed to qualify for the job.

It is my belief that this duo of Wilpons have little to no respect for New York Mets history. The fact that the main rotunda is devoted to a Brooklyn Dodger , albeit a legitimate American icon, is a mistake that showed poor judgment, particularly as we see cheap placards of former Mets adorning the outside of Debits aka Citi Field . This clearly shows what the Wilpons deem more important. And to me an indictment of the judgment needed to own THIS  particular New York baseball team.

I would be a clairvoyant if I could predict the future of this team under this ownership, and clearly I am not. It is quite possible that despite the apparent cluelessness of Daddy and Junior Wilpon the Mets could be successful. They have some good young and talented players. I also believe leadership comes from great players and how they inspire teammates, not from owners. 

The Mets have sold enough tickets and earned enough money from the network they own to have enough money to spend on improving the team. How well they do it is a crapshoot. They have had a modicum of success, just not enough to satisfy us after painful late season collapses in 2006-2008. 

Last season showed inept leadership from top to bottom in the way they handled, or should I say mishandled, injuries and provided information to not only us as fans but to the actual players themselves!

I have been a Mets fan for most of my life. If it were up to me, I would demand that Wilpons sell the team today. Sadly, that is so far out of my  grasp for demanding things that I have to simply be like the rest of us, and hope that they can win despite this apparently disastrous team ownership.

I couldn’t have said it better. I’d like to throw in a couple more examples too. Jeff scouting in Japan and convincing everyone that Kaz Matsui is the next great Mets shortstop over Jose Reyes. The Tony Bernazard scandal this season and the Omar Minaya meltdown were two examples of Mets executives gone wild and embarrassing the franchise. The Mets leadership has looked like buffoons and it bled over onto the field this season. I’m with Robin though. Winning baseball is done on the field by players, not in the offices by execs. Great job, Robin!

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3 thoughts on “Voice Of The Fan: Mets Ownership

  1. DyHrdMET

    I see a pattern in place going back at least since the Wilpon-Doubleday tandem took over (which is a bit before my time). They build a winner (and their first time around, they did the best job at it), get close to repeating the goal (again, the first time around in this era, 1986, they won it all, and then the pattern really develops), something happens which I can't pinpoint, the Mets fall flat on their faces, and a new regime and a new set of players has to come in and start from scratch, only to do it again (heck, since the Yankees became dominant, we've been through 2 complete cycles of this). Patterns like this are more of a reflection on ownership than the players.

    I wrote about this on my blog, RememberingShea, a while back and I wanted to re-word some of it and re-post it in the off-season. I've also ripped the Mets to shreds over the new ballpark time and time again.

    1. Dave_Doyle Post author

      That's a good point. But I think that you could say the same thing about other teams. Look at the Marlins. They're an extreme example of the cyclical nature of winning it all and breaking it down to nothing. They've won two championships since the Mets won their last one. Agh, I hate writing that.

      1. DyHrdMET

        Certainly not to say that the Mets are alone in this, but other teams are built to sustain, and that's where direction from ownership (and also the GM) come in to play. The Marlins would have sustained had they not been forced to sell off their winning product piece by piece each time they won it all. Look at the Braves (I hesitate putting the Yankees in this thought mostly because they restock the shelves each year rather than building). How many times did they get to the playoffs, lose, and get back the next year? They were built to keep getting back. The Mets have never been that way. I thought Omar would bring that here 4 years ago, but I get that feeling looking back that ownership wanted something sooner than rebuilding. It's tricky.

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