SportsProf

(Hopefully) good sports essays and observations for good sports by a guy who tries (and can sometimes fail) to be a good sport.

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Friday, August 28, 2009

Are the Mets going to be up for sale?

So says the author about a book on Bernie Madoff, with whom the Wilpon family, who owns the Mets, had invested $700 million.

It's hard to imagine a family losing $700 million and still being "okay." The linked article, though, quotes the Wilpons as denying the author's speculation. Still, the whole affair makes one wonder as to what's true and what's not.

The Mets have had one of the worst runs of bad luck in baseball history. They lost Carlos Delgado early, then Carlos Beltran and Jose Reyes, and then David Wright gets beaned. Atop that, ace Johan Santana has a bad elbow (and, of course, the hindsight speculators noted in articles about Santana that the Red Sox and Yankees both were very concerned about Santana's arm when the lefty was on Minnesota's trading block several years ago) and setup man J.J. Putz has missed most of the season. Also, opening-day catcher Brian Schneider lost his job to a journeyman rookie, and veteran outfielder Gary Sheffield has shown that he is in his early 40's and a shadow of his former self. The parade of horribles is endless, this from a team that Baseball Prospectus had predicted had a good chance to win the World Series.

I wish the Wilpons the best of luck. As a Phillies' fan, while it's nice that the Phillies don't have the late-season anxiety (at least right now) that they have over the past four years, the rivalry with the Mets is a special one and tends, over time, to bring out the best in both teams (MLB killed the Phillies' best rivalry when, a few decades ago, they moved to 3 divisions and didn't keep the Pirates in the same division with the Phillies). It will be interesting to see what the Mets do in the off-season -- and what the Wilpons do.

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