In a candid interview with Bob Nightengale of USA Today, Mets GM Sandy Alderson suggested that it’s quite unlikely his organization will oversee a franchise-altering sell-off of MLB assets this summer. The post is a must-read for Mets fans.
“Can circumstances change that, yes,” Alderson said of the possibility of a significant roster tear-down. “But I think that would be very, very remote. It’s not something we’re even considering or talking about.”
Even more interesting than that statement, though, was Alderson’s explication of his philosophy on roster building and team performance. He tells Nightengale that he rejects the notion — which he says is prevalent in the broader MLB culture — that “you’re either really good or you stink.” Alderson generally explains that he doesn’t adhere to that level of extremism and notes that a significant rebuild, while coming with the potential for great success, also doesn’t guarantee a return to prominence.
That line of thinking seems to hint that the Mets will not feel pressured to take a dramatic approach to the deadline. Of course, Alderson has also proven willing to do so in recent years, having adopted both buying and selling postures as situations warranted. Memorably, the club struck a pair of 2015 blockbusters — one foiled by medicals, one consummated — with a resulting butterfly effect of rare significance. Last year, the club shipped out a bevy of veterans on expiring contracts after a disappointing and injury-riddled first half of the season.
This time around, the hope was — and still is — that the roster would perform much better. The Mets ponied up some cash for solid veterans at areas of need, though certainly some would have argued that a bigger spend on more elite talent was warranted. Things looked promising after an initial run of success, but the club entered play today three games under .500.
Alderson is taking the long view and remaining optimistic despite the team’s recent struggles, bemoaning a “temporary loss of perspective” and citing “the possibilities when we get players back from injuries.” Indeed, the team is welcoming back two significant offseason additions — Todd Frazier and Anthony Swarzak — for today’s game, while Noah Syndergaard and Yoenis Cespedes are perhaps not far behind. Those returns won’t ensure an upswing in the standings and don’t explain all of the difficulties the Mets have encountered, but each absence has also undoubtedly been a significant component in the club’s overall struggles.