Being a basketball coach doesn’t allow me the time I would love to have to concentrate on other interests I have. However, with winter break here for me, I have some time to focus on New York sports. Of course, as I sit down and relax, my the Football Giants decide to take a short cut to the golf course. Bored and with no football hopes this weekend, I looked under my Christmas tree and started to get Mets fever. The 50 year DVD set and new alternate hat strengthened my desire to start thinking about Met baseball once again. With these good feelings about the Mets, I figured I’d check out the pundit. [Read more…]
With the 25th anniversary of the Mets last series victory coming and going, I once again ask the old the Mets/Yankees question. Would you rather win a ton of titles or have a few you can look at as very special?
There is no doubt that all Mets fans that were alive in 1986 and remember cheering for the team can fondly remember this Mets club. Take more for example, right now I am watching game 7 of the 1986 series. My room is decorated with such items as a 1986 World Series banner and in my closet I could throw on a Mex, Nails, Doc or Straw jersey.
Whether it is baseball season or not, whether the Mets are the joke of baseball, I can also put on the old Year To Remember video. I can always tell the story of how I fell asleep when the ball went through Buckner’s legs with a smile. I claim my fondest Shea Stadium memory as the 20th year reunion in 2006.
For the Met fan, 1986 will always have a huge hold in our hearts. However, if the Mets had won 27 titles would be look at this team the same way. If the Mets had won in 84, 88, 90, etc., etc., etc., would 1986 jump out as much. My answer is no, the more they would have won would have taken the individuality out of this year. However, this club had so many characters that it would be hard to say it would not have been one of the best eras of Mets baseball.
To answer the question I would give it up all of those memories to have more then one title in my lifetime. I’m sure for Yankee fans those titles of the late 90’s and early 00’s blend together and that none of those individual teams are as important to them as the 1986 one is for Mets fans but nothing beats winning.
The Mets have had just a few close calls since 1986 and the Met fan is left wondering will I ever see this team win again? I’m sure the Yankee fan is just wondering when the next one is coming, not if. As I get older and my parents do too, I hope that one more time in our lifetimes, we will be able to share that moment of seeing the Mets bring it home. The feeling of celebrating with them would more then outweigh the banners, the VHS tapes and the jerseys.
As I’ve mentioned several times, as this season unfolded I was not going to hold high expectations but I wanted the Mets to at least entertain me and give me hope that the future is not going to be as bleak as 2009 and 2010.
So far the Mets have carried up their side of the bargain and I have to say that after a very ugly 5 and 13 start, I have held up my side of the bargain by watching as much as possible.
In 2005, we got a new manager, some of our youth and free agents started molding together and built up something special for the following season. Watching in 2005, I had hope and knew 2006 was going to be a year to remember. I feel that this group could be starting to bring some of those feelings come back.
The term that we heard over and over again was “grit”, in the past we didn’t have it, now it is a word that many used to define this team. The Turner’s, the Murphy’s, Pagan’s etc. have carried the team while superstars Wright, Davis and Santana mend injuries. These guys want to win and play the game hard. Yes, we have to deal with this occassional dumb mistake but they are giving their all.
It is really amazing that this team has played 9 or so games over .500 since that awful beginning and have only picked up steam after Davis and Wright were sidelined. If the bullpen could have held up lately this team could be ahead for the wild card. It shows you the job Terry Collins has done. The thing that has me on TC’s side especially is hearing Jose Reyes’ comments and love for him.
Speaking of Jose, a lot has been said but he is the NL MVP at this point. I am so shocked people gave up so early on Jose, he always has been one of the most talented players in baseball but only has been slowed by injuries never a lack of talent. I think that the support that the7line and others have shown for Jose will likely keep him in town at least until the end of the season but I think there is still a big chance that he doesn’t get the contract offer he deserves from the Mets and could walk to a team like the Red Sox.
Who knows what the next three and a half months will hold in store for the Mets but I hope that it will be enough to give us hope that we can get back to where we need to be in 2012.
Nobody will ever mistake me for a rose-colored-glasses Mets fan. I tend to lean way way to the pessimistic. Now with camp open though it’s time to turn the page. While I fully admit Mets fans will never forget the last few seasons, it’s time to put them in the past.
How can we expect the team to put it behind then, how can we create a new “culture” and chart a new direction for the franchise if we as fans and bloggers constantly harp on the negative. I’m a married man, and I am far from perfect, and if my wife continually harped on all the stupid stuff I’ve have done in the past, the future wouldn’t be a happy one. Instead you learn from the little issues and create a great future together. Much can be the same with the Mets. Lets hope that the Mets can learn from the past and use it as motivation. A new page is being written now with the new front office, a transition that I love and have high hopes for in the long run.
As a website I want to start to focus our attention on the field. As fascinated as I am with the entire Madoff story, it really wont have any(more) effect on this current team so I will try to put that to the back burner. It’s a huge story, and one I will personally follow closely, but I will promise to not let it effect the day-to-day operations of the
team … blog.
Lets have fun and watch some baseball. It’s a great time of year. Take realistic expectations and try to find storylines you want to follow closely this season. For me I am really anxious to see what Thole and Davis can do in Year 2. I am a youth/prospect guy so I love to watch players develop. Find the little niches that will interest you day to day, I find it helps a lot and can draw you into the team even more.
Spring training 2011 is upon us, so let’s play ball.
Well, I hope at least. In past blogs, I’ve referred to the Mets as in a very similar situation to the Knicks. However, I think the Mets have changed their mojo a lot quicker then it took the Knicks too. As I eluded to over the past few seasons, the Mets issuesstemmed from Jerry Manuel to Omar Minaya et al.
I think the new Mets brain trust will at least lead the team in the right direction this season. Trust me, I don’t think the Mets are going to even make the playoffs this year. Maybe contending for the Wild Card into deep August or September would please me. I don’t know if success this season will be matched in wins and losses. I think it will be just changing the culture, getting rid of the cancers of the team and locker room and getting a winning feeling amongst the team.
My idea is that Alderson will try to clean up the roster and focus on player development in the minors and the draft. We know that for awhile the big spending days may be over and the Mets will look to pick up players along the way like the champion Giants did. An Aubrey Huff, a Cody Ross, this are the guys I feel we will go after. Guys you need on a pennant winner, not what the Mets tried to do and that was copy the Yankees and just throw money at everyone.
2005 was kind of an exciting season, we cleaned up after the previous manager had made a mess, we had youngsters who were also showing signs and it led to a winning season and for the next year a magical season. I am hoping that this Alderson/Collins combination can do that. Make it exciting, make me want to watch every game, make me want to spend my money at Citi Field and I will be a happy man.
As I continue to read more and more into this Wilpon-Madoff lawsuit, one thing seems to jump out at me: how reliant the Wilpons were on Madoff for day-to-day operations of their empire. What rings alarms to me is how they used Madoff as their own personal bank. Not just for business ventures or large investments, no they relied on Madoff to meet payroll, pay for stadium operations, and for players deferred money payments. Madoff was woven into the day-to-day operations of the Mets. The reason they did this is even more alarming. They took the “investments” from Madoff when needed in lieu of “loans” from a traditional bank or even a private fund, because if they took “loans” they would have to disclose that. By taking private “investments” they could keep that secret. Sure seems dishonest to me, at the very least a little shady.
To read the entire thing yourself, go eat a heavy meal first – your gonna be a while, go here: Wilpon-Madoff Lawsuit Unsealed
Fernando A. Bohorquez, Jr., a Baker & Hostetler partner representing the Trustee.:
“There are thousands of victims of Bernard Madoff’s massive Ponzi scheme. Saul Katz is not one of them. Neither is Fred Wilpon. And neither are the rest of the Sterling Equities’ partners. In fact, Saul Katz, Fred Wilpon, the other Sterling partners, … were collectively one of the largest beneficiaries of Madoff’s fraud, reaping hundreds of millions in fictitious profits over Sterling’s quarter-century relationship with Madoff.”
Saying the Wilpon empire was propped up by Madoff money:
Saul Katz, Fred Wilpon and their partners capitalized on their close personal connection with Madoff and used their BLMIS investments to anchor the Sterling empire. Madoff money flowed through every aspect of Sterling’s business; whether real estate, baseball or private equity, virtually every Sterling business held investments with BLMIS,” said Mr. Bohorquez.
Not funny, but tells you of the aggressive pursuit by Trustee:
suit even attempts to recover $27.5 million in “fictious profits” from 1 of Jeff’s children
On how the Wilpons were believed to have been warned about the Madoff scheme:
Given Sterling’s dependency on Madoff, it comes as no surprise that the partners willfully turned a blind eye to every red flag of fraud before them. The warning signs were many and varied, ranging from cautionary counsel from financial industry experts and trusted advisors to Madoff’s schemes to avoid regulatory scrutiny.
Suit also says Wilpons were warned of potential trouble with Madoff in 2007 by Merrill-Lynch.
Wilpons/Katz also received warnings in 2002 and 03 from various outside parties, suit says
They “made so much easy money from Madoff for so long that despite the many objective indicia of fraud before them, the Sterling partners chose to simply look the other way”
And this my fellow Mets fan’s is the scariest part:
Suit also says Wilpons so dependent on Madoff financing their activities they had to restructure >$500 million in debt after fraud uncovered
So aside from all this, the Wilpons had $500 million on debt that had to restructure, could it be CitiField debt? Saying that none of this would effect the Mets is laughable at this point.
Thanks in large part to @AdamRubinESPN for a lot of the information.
I am gonna try to keep this post as brief as possible, cause you know me, I could rant on for pages and pages. I will start with a quote from the Trustee:
There are thousands of victims of Madoff’s massive Ponzi scheme. But Saul Katz is not one of them. Neither is Fred Wilpon. And neither are the rest of the partners at Sterling.
As I can best understand it – the numbers break down like this:
Trustee: The Mets withdrew $300 million more then they ever put into the Madoff fund.
Wilpons: We are victims because we thought we had $500 million more in the account, and we lost that.
In essence regardless of what the Wilpons initial investment was, they figured they made $800 million in profit. Of that profit they withdrew $300 of it (plus their initial investment) leaving another $500 million to apparently continue to accrue imaginary additional profits.
Basically the Wilpons think they are victims cause they lost their additional $500 million after already profiting $300 of other peoples money. Listen, I understand it sucks when you think you have $500 million in a safe place and it turns out you don’t (well no, I don’t understand, but I can try to imagine). But they need to step back and think about all the people who lost EVERYTHING.
What about all the Mets employees who had their 401k’s invested heavily in the Madoff fund (90% reportedly) and now have nothing?
I am still digesting all the info, but right now I am flabbergasted by the Wilpons delusions….
There is a lot of bickering back and forth but the bottom line is that the Wilpons team accused the Trustee of the Madoff victims of strategically leaking sealed information in an effort to smear the Wilpons. Because of this the Wilpon team filed motions to request the lawsuit be unsealed and it’s felt this could happen today. The hearing was originally dated for Feb 9th.