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Friday, January 23, 2009

Why are the Mets passing on Manny Ramirez?

While the Yankees' front office may be moving today, there are plenty of free agents out there who haven't moved to a new team. And Manny Ramirez, of course, is the biggest name.

So where will he end up? I still think - and hope - he'll be a Yankee this year. But it looks like the Mets' David Wright has a "Man crush," as the New York Post calls it, on Manny. He told this to the media yesterday after his poignant visit to a children's hospital:

"I know what (Ramirez) has done on the field, and that's impressive," Wright said. "When you can single-handedly take a team and carry it into the postseason, and then once you get into the postseason the numbers speak for themselves, that's impressive.

"I would be on board with Manny 100 percent, assuming that he comes in and puts the team first and wants to be part of this thing and wants to win."

But the Mets' Jeff Wilpon quickly threw cold water on the idea of Ramirez as a Met, telling Bloomberg News:

“I know the perception out there again is that ownership said no,” Wilpon said yesterday at Citi Field, the Mets’ new ballpark. “I don’t have the opportunity to say no because Omar hasn’t brought it to me as an option. Omar and the baseball staff aren’t interested.”

And this, Squawker Jon, is why your Mets will always play second fiddle to the Yanks. Omar Minaya has openly coveted Manny Ramirez for years. And now that he's available, all of a sudden Omar's not interested? What, Fernando Tatis was just too good to take out of left field for Manny? Gimme a break.

Jon, you can criticize the Yankees for overspending, but at least they're willing to do what it takes to assemble the best team. Both teams have shiny new ballparks, and cable networks, yet while the Yanks signed three top free agents this year, your team is picking up the likes of Alex Cora, Tim Redding and Freddy Garcia, and passing on Derek Lowe.

In fact, the only big-name free agent the Mets have picked up was Francisco Rodriguez, and that was back in early December, before the Bernie Madoff scandal broke. (The J.J. Putz trade was before Madoff as well.) Heck, your team hasn't even re-signed Oliver Perez.

So how much money, exactly, did the Wilpons lose with Madoff? No wonder they're hanging on to that CitiField sponsorship for dear life!

Where do you think Manny Ramirez will end up? Leave us a comment!


12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Who wants Manny? He's overpriced, and if he gets a long term deal, he'll cause trouble. Additionally, Wright isn't "openly coveting" him. Wright said that he wouldn't mind having Manny on his team, which is pretty much what he'd say about any decent player that he was asked about.

mhochman said...

My concern with Manny is the same concern i had with Lowe, How old will he be at the end of his contract, We have learned with Pedro, Aloma, Vaughn et. al. eventually these guys stop producing, what if we sign Manny, and he gives us 1 year of .330 and 40hr, and then does NOTHING for 3 years a la Pedro.

If i knew i was going to get "MANNY" for 3-4 years, i'd say spend whatever it takes, But...

Alvaro Fernandez Ravelo said...

I think there is a curse on the Mets ... the Curse of the GM! And I'm not referring to General Motors (pun intended) but Steve Phillips and (trying to do my best Chris Berman impersonation) Omar-god Minaya ... Sheez, any CEO from the Big 3 would do a much better job.

She-Fan said...

My crystal ball says Manny goes back to the Dodgers. People out here in CA really want him.

Anonymous said...

Lisa, if Manny is a great pick-up, how about he yankees grab him?
I would think that the average yankee fan concerns themselves with the same issues with Manny that met fans do. he is old, expensive, and out of his mind!

And Alvaro, what exactly are you talking about? I assume that you are throwing a dig at Omar? He is 2x the gm that cashman is, but that is not saying much. Omar played the market on krod and putz perfectly, and even got it right with lowe. what skills have cashman displayed so far? besides writing the biggest check?
km

Alvaro Fernandez Ravelo said...

km, this is a discussion that I've had with Lisa for a while, unfortunately I didn't kept those mails.
I don't know what is your line of work, I live in Guatemala, I've worked at Citi and other local companies.
I've followed the Yankees since 76, lived the dark ages of the 80's (most wins in the decade, no titles) and the Yankees came back when George Steinbrenner was suspended. Why? They rebuilt the farm system.
When George returned he went back to his sign 80's style of signing once great player but on a decline. Had his own advisers at Tampa that overruled Cashman and sometimes took their own decisions (Jaret Wright comes to mind).
So when Cashman's contract renewed his contact in late '05 he was very aware of the new economics in baseball and conditioned his contract to have complete authority.
So in three years it's hard to rebuild a franchise damaged by ten years of dysfunctional management.
Time will tell, spending is smarter, the franchise is getting better. It will take a while but he is changing the organization for better. If it all works out he should be named Car Czar to transform the Big 3!
Omaya only knows he has to sign every Latin American (I am from LatAm) most past their prime like Pedro Martinez, Moises Alou or the over hyped K-Rod ... and when in trouble, fire the manager and not even have the guts to face the guy.

Anonymous said...

the yankees followed cashman's lead last year and decided to stick with youth instead of adding santana. How'd it work out? the yankees haven't won anything since 2000, a significant period of time considering their overwhelming success in the late 90's. the "dysfunctional management" you refer to illustrates the ineptitude of brian cashman.

As for omar signing past their prime stars. i am not going to dispute this, but, pedro helped transform this team when he signed, and alou is solid when not hurt.
I don't know how you would consider Krod past his prime, if anything he is just entering it at his age. He played the market perfectly for him, and then added putz for virtually nothing. The trade for santana last year was masterful as well, 2nd rate prospects for one of the best pitchers in baseball? done deal!
Cashman's approach? throw gobs of money at the big name free agents. they offered $60 million more than anybody else for sabathia, and a boatload more for fragile burnett. no wheeling and dealing. no waiting out the market. just "let me get my checkbook and make out the largest check i can." time will tell if it works, but your farm system is no better than it was 5 years ago.

When in trouble fire the manager. indeed. you guys ran a hall of fame manager out of town. insulted him with a offensive offer and chased him out. willie randolph is no joe torre. neither is girardi for that matter.

Jonmouk71 said...

My crystal ball says that, in the absence of a long term deal because of the current economic situation, Manny signs a one year deal with an option for a second with....the Yankees. Reasons? One, he hammers the ball, wins a title and is an exemplary teammate in NY, rehabbing his reputation for a long term deal next year when economic conditions are better. Two, he sticks it to the Red Sox Nation by helping the Yanks to the title and sticks it to the Mets for not signing him to a long term deal (Wilpon, Jr.: "Omar is not interested") when they can clearly use him. Personally, I think Wilpon lost a ton of money in the Madoff scam and that's why the Mets are going "cheap" on Manny, Lowe, etc.

Alvaro Fernandez Ravelo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alvaro Fernandez Ravelo said...

The Santana deal can't be judged yet. For starters, his K/ratio DROPPED and he is playing in the AAAA league (formerly known as the National League). Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy have not retired so they still have an open case.

The difference between the late '90's and the early '00's is that the Yankees had something resembling an average farm system. They could have significant trades involving the farm system. That got so bad the I recall an article where Cashman told the minor leagues that most likely they would start their MLB careers in ANOTHER team.

The "dysfunctional management" started when the Tampa guys could override Cashman and take decisions on their own and Cashman getting the news from reporters. Cashman conditioned his new contract after 2005 that ALL decisions be made through him.

I don't know what "Anonymous" does for a living, I have worked for 20+ years and I know that when an organization has been damaged it takes years to fix.

The Yankees didn't made it to the playoffs for various reasons. Hughes and Kennedy failures (for the '08 seasons, look at Johan Santana's first year in the majors, the numbers are horrible). At the end of the '07 season the best starting pitcher available as free agent was Carlos Silva. So they took a risk. From 2002 to 2007 the Yankees were either 1st or 2nd in OPS in the MLB (only once 3rd in that year span). In 2008 they were 8th due to injuries (Posada, Matsui, horrible numbers by Cano and Melky and subpar year for Jeter). Wang's injury contributed also for the failures of the 2008 season.

That AL East has the best organization today in the Red Sox (my pride and feelings makes it vert hard to say this, but my sense overrules in this one) and Tampa Bay is getting smarter, the jury is still out on them, but they seem like a threat to the Yankees.

Pedro's contribution for the Mets was in 2005, 1st year of a four year deal. Look for the same kind of return in Santana's contract. And hey, I do think still that if Pedro does a Dennis Eckersley and becomes a closer, he could still have some gas left!

I met once Moises Alou in the Dominican Republic and he is a swell guy. This was just right after the Marlins won in 1997 and he is very humble and friendly. Yes, when available, he produces. And for the last TWO seasons that adds up to 102 games, that's an availability of 31%.

I used the word "or" a disjunction. So I'll state it again, over hyped K-Rod. Looks for leverage situations stats not for saves.

Yes, the Santana price payed in prospects was close to nothing. That was masterful. The difference with the Yankees is that the asking prices is ALWAYS higher. Look for the Yankee players asked by the Arizona Diamonds for Curt Schilling and look what the Red Sox gave away. That was a conspiracy!

AJ Burnett has GREAT numbers against the Red Sox and Rays, that is his worth.

There is nothing more to wait for the market, what do the Yankees need to deal for? The Yankees wishlist is just missing one more starter. Who can they trade? Nady or Swisher. There are a LOT of equivalent outfielders left yet to sign, so why would another team give away something when they can get it in the free agent market?

Baseball America rated the Yankee farm systems in February 2008 at #5 (Rays #1, Red Sox #2, Mets #17) and in 2003 as #17.

Joe Torre should have been fired after the 2004 choke. Insult offer for Torre? He took LESS money from the Dodgers. He was insulted because they were incentives in the contract. As a fan, I GOT INSULTED by Joe Torre because from 2002 up until 2007 all the early exits from the playoffs he used the phrase "the playoffs are crap shots." He gets full credit for 96 to 2001 but then "crap shots"? If a CEO wants full bonus on good years but excuses himself for bad results with a "crap shots" excuse he should be fired immediately.

Anonymous said...

I don't even know where to start with your post alvaro, but I don't know what my profession has to do with anything. I could be a ditch digger and your experience in an organization makes you no more qualtified to have a baseball OPINION than anyone else. And don't put hughes/kennedy and johan in the same sentence.
km

Alvaro Fernandez Ravelo said...

km, we are having a discussion about management. I guess that you are aware that GM stands for General Manager, and we are on the subject of Brian Cashman vs Omar Minaya, which both are GMs.
I presented facts and numbers for each and everyone of your arguments.
And you answer with "And don't put hughes/kennedy and johan in the same sentence."
I was kind of expecting an interesting and adult discussion here but it doesn't look like we are having one.
Good riddance!