Fred Wilpon On Payroll, Reyes, Beltran, Minaya

Fred Wilpon's media blitz was actually a two-part plan.  Jeffrey Toobin's article in The New Yorker was the big story Monday morning, mainly because the Mets owner was so candid about his players and team.  As informative as that article was, SI's Tom Verducci has more from an interview conducted with Wilpon last week.

  • The Mets are "bleeding cash," possibly $70MM this year according to Wilpon.
  • Wilpon talked about investing $100MM properly, an indication that the 2012 payroll may drop about 30% to that level.  This isn't a surprise; I wrote on May 2nd that a $100MM payroll next year would still give GM Sandy Alderson around $20MM to play with before accounting for minimum salary players.  So while Wilpon confirmed that the Mets are not likely to reinvest the money coming off the payroll after the season, it would have been nice if someone asked him how they'd handle a potential $10MM+ saved if veterans are traded during the season.
  • Verducci says the Mets "have studied the success of the Boston Red Sox in letting top veterans play out their contracts and taking the compensatory draft picks," and would only trade Jose Reyes if they receive a first-round type talent who is close to the Majors, similar to when the Athletics acquired Brett Wallace for Matt Holliday.  Does this mean the Mets won't consider trades built around top prospects who are not big league ready, such as the Giants' Zack Wheeler?
  • On the Reyes topic, Wilpon said, "I know there's a great question about whether we can keep the shortstop, so we're preparing for that if that should happen."  He admitted that Carlos Beltran "will be elsewhere" and the Mets hope Fernando Martinez could fill his shoes.  Of Martinez, Wilpon said, "He's fragile, but he can hit."
  • The Mets' new investor will be treated as a partner and will have some say, even though Fred Wilpon will remain the team's designated "control person" and Jeff Wilpon will remain the COO.
  • On former GM Omar Minaya, Wilpon said, "It was painful to see what Omar did to himself. Why did he do that?"  I'm not sure what Wilpon is referring to specifically here.

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