Mets president Sandy Alderson took to the microphone on Monday to attempt to do damage control after an offseason where many recent high-ranking employees saw themselves felled by their own objectionable behavior.
And while it wasn’t quite the Rotary Club in Bellevue, Washington, plenty of his comments were still revealing about the flawed way this team operates, from top to bottom.
Entering the offseason, the Mets were buoyed by the Myth of Steve Cohen, pushed forth into a new era and ready to test the outer limits of how much spending one team could do before becoming the enemy.
Instead, we were treated to a still-cautious Mets team picking and choosing their spending sprees while doing damage control in all other areas of the front office.
Every time one leak was stemmed with a Francisco Lindor trade, another became unplugged by the reveal of widespread recent negligence.
Alderson attempted to drum up enthusiasm on Monday morning, but instead ended up revealing how close the team came to Cohen’s self-imposed spending limits (which sound a lot like … everyone else’s), then admitted how little input the team had from women in sports before they were forced into attempting to listen to them.
Yankees fans were right to not be worried about Steve Cohen swarming them.
Heading into the 2020-21 offseason, we assured you that the rest of MLB’s owners wouldn’t have let Cohen into the fraternity if he wasn’t as dedicated to his own bottom line as the rest of them are.
Alderson’s innocent story about Cohen being unwilling to splurge on one additional year for George Springer, as well as suggesting that said year would’ve gotten in the way of a Michael Conforto deal, was rendered suspect by the comment about ownership “running out of money.” If an additional $20 million annual expenditure caused a billionaire to “run out of money,” then these finances haven’t been calculated correctly.
Alas, Cohen has his limits. And those limits allowed him to spend top dollar for the best at a given position instead of ducking below the line and purchasing a cheaper alternate exactly one time this offseason.
Of course, Cohen’s now-visible financial limitations weren’t the sole controversial focus of this press conference.
Now born anew in the wake of missing out on the controversial Trevor Bauer at the eleventh hour, Alderson sang a new tune, claiming the team was thrilled to have missed out on the chance to sign the righty, and had a plan to … import a council of women to talk him out of being abusive on social media?
This now-pervasive idea isn’t improving my view of the way the Mets incorporate the opinions of women in their operations.
Since the emergence of the Jared Porter story and Mickey Callaway allegations, plenty of men have defaulted to begging women to step in and steer the industry’s men right. There are plenty of problems we can begin to work towards solving by hiring more women and incorporating their ideas natively into the hiring process for other high-ranking positions. But inorganically glomming them on at the one-yard line as figureheads doesn’t cover any of the right bases.
Thinking decades of Bauer’s insolence could be reversed by sitting him down and forcing him to take a crash course on respecting women is ignorant and puts too much onus on the women themselves to clean up his mess.
Some organizations never change, and the more the Mets attempt to reverse their recent history of sexism and collusive frugal behavior, the more they show why both cultures developed in the first place.