I truly don’t know if I should laugh or cry. Today New York Mets owner Fred Wilpon spoke at a small press gathering on the first day of spring training. He was asked what the offseason was like for him and to that he replied:
Torture. Very, very difficult. So, look, you’ve heard the theme that we have to stay healthy. I’m very optimistic that they will. And I think that when you have very good – and in some cases great – players, it doesn’t necessarily translate into a great team. So I think that if they stay healthy, they have some great players and now our people have to translate that into a great team, and that’s what my optimism is about, and what my hope is about.
Seriously Fred? Seriously? When he was asked specifically what about the offseason was “torture” he explained:
When you have all those injuries, and a bad season, and the fans were disappointed – but not any more disappointed than I was and I’m probably the biggest fan. But now, that’s last year. Now it’s 2010 and it’s 70 degrees inFlorida and the sun is shining, so I have a great feeling of optimism. The players by the way – to a man that I’ve spoken to and I’ve spoken to 20, 25 of them – I sense a difference in their goals and their attitude. Listen, those are the only guys that can do it.
See transcript by David Lennon here
Well Mr. Wilpon let me be the first to welcome you to the club. The name of that club? Fans of the New York Mets. Specifically the last 4 years. Glad to see your just starting to realize what it’s like. I don’t know how only last years injuries “tortured” you, what with the two historic collapses prior, but hey, maybe you were distracted counting your imaginary returns from your buddy Bernie Maddoff?
Oh and do me a favor, please don’t try to tout yourself as “the biggest fan.” Get a grip. Just because you pay the bills doesn’t mean you can call yourself a fan. When you allow the organization to continually embarrass a fan base with the antics of Tony Bernazard and company, you lose all creditability there. Oh and when you steadfastly refuse to spend money that the team makes because you want to refill the family’s warchest that you foolishly pissed away investing with Buddy Bernie, you lose all right to call yourself a fan. George Steinbrenner can call himself the biggest fan, because all that man cares about is winning. You, Sir, are obviously about profit above all else. If you start acting like an owner who just wants to win championships (Steinbrenner, Cuban, etc) then perhaps I would let it slide, but given the current climate governing the Mets budgetary constraints I find it highly insulting.
I suppose I should be happy that my owner supposedly cares so much. I don’t know, maybe I should. This just comes off as staged to me. You were so “tortured” that you did absolutely nothing to revamp your medical staff/procedures that so embarrassingly resembled a clown college last year. You were so “tortured” that instead of going out and shaping the team behind speed, defense and pitching, you went and bid against yourself and got Jason Bay, who is neither great defensively, nor fast, and not a pitcher (even if he probably could make the rotation on this team). Then you steadfastly refused to spend another dime on any of the facets you claim to covet, you know, the philosophy you built a billion dollar stadium around.
Oh but hey, I really appreciate you springing the extra dough to lower the centerfield wall for us. Who would have thunk that a 16′ wall rising up at 410′ would have been overkill,? I am really gonna enjoy those extra homeruns this year, I just hope our pitchers don’t get mad at you when a vast majority of them are hit by the visitors (see again my pitching/defense/speed point).