It was recently reported that the team's existing loan limits them from greatly expanding payroll, though a new, re-worked loan will eliminate any restrictions (New York Post, Feb. 13).
Alderson indicated his current payroll sits somewhere north of $85 million, when factoring in promotions, insurance, etc., he said (Newsday, Feb. 13).
10:50 am: It's getting to a point where I cringe whenever Alderson talks about payroll, because I know it means a new barrage of e-mails, tweets and comments from people freaking out about the reported number... as if it matters what he says in public. I am more concerned with what the payroll can be, what it needs to be and how those two things square up. And, since one isn't public knowledge and the other is just opinion, it makes the whole debate seem very futile. It ends up just being fodder for confirmation bias and conspiracy theories.
I mean, for the sake of argument, let's say the Mets have a $120 million budget, whether based on current revenue, debt limits, who cares. The number is what it is. However, with only 25 roster spots and a group of young players they want to develop that are already occupying space (and who happen to make very little money) they only spend $80 million? What does that mean? Is it different than having just a $80 million budget? Also, how does it change reality to learn payroll is $80 million or $85 million when we don't know the overall budget? What's more, when Zack Wheeler, Matt Harvey, Daniel Murphy and lots of the current group start earning raises through arbitration, etc., this exact 25-man roster could end up being paid a collective $120 million. Is that OK? Same players, more money. Or, does payroll only matter when thinking about it in terms of missed opportunities?
In the end, it's about immediate wins... and sustained winning. These things are not always created the same way. I think Alderson is trying for the latter more than the former, which is fine by me. I truly don't care why he's doing what he's doing, be it because of bank limits, debt or simply because it's the best way to get from here to there. I like the overall plan and direction. It makes sense to me and lots of other fans who understand what it takes to build a sustainable, winning franchise. I'll only judge and be pissed if it fails...