This past weekend at the BBWAA Awards dinner in New York City, Sandy Alderson made this joke about Manti Te'o and his outfield:
"A message to Mets fans: There's been a lot of talk about our outfield, and I want you to know that I'm in serious discussions with several outfielders I met on the internet. ... There's one I really like. He says he played at Stanford."
I get the joke. It's well written and said in good fun, I'm sure. But, as someone who takes this stuff seriously, I think it's in poor taste.
I realize he was speaking to a room full of media, not fans. But, there were cameras, and reporters, so it's not like this wasn't going to be made public. I mean, within seconds, every New York reporter tweeted the joke. They clearly couldn't wait to get it up online.
Maybe I should lighten up, because sports isn't the most important thing in the world and I should probably have a better sense of humor about this. But, Mets fans spend hard-earned money on tickets, we spend valuable time watching games on TV, and I just don't think the GM should be joking about the product... or, at the very least, joking about his effort to improve the product.
Alderson knows how weak his outfield is, because (in addition to this joke) that's exactly how he characterized it during his interview with WFAN's Mike Francesa last week. He also told Francesa that he expects to make an acquisition or two before Spring Training.... which starts in less than a month.
The buzz from Citi Field is that Scott Hairston is not going to sign some place until he can be sure of his playing time, meaning he's waiting to see what other moves the Yankees or Mets make since neither team is yet willing to give him a two-year deal.
“If one or two things might happen, that might affect his playing time,” Alderson said, in regards to Hairston's hesitation to ink a deal The Mets are looking at other options, Alderson explained, but said the chances of that happening are "50-50.”
In other words, Hairston is holding back to see if those moves happen and might impact his playing time.
What moves? It's a total guess, but (because it's mostly platoon players left on the free agent market) I assume they're referring to either Michael Bourn or a possible trade or two.
Alderson did a good job in locking in David Wright and dealing R.A. Dickey. But, when it comes to even marginally improving this team's short-term power and offense, this winter has been a total failure. Of course, technically, there is still time. I have low expectations, but I'm still hoping and waiting for something to happen... because I just can't believe a professional sports team in New York will allow itself to field such an incomplete team. However, if they do, even if it's for the betterment of a wise, long-term plan, the least they can do is not joke about it...