You can read a full recap at Amazin’ Avenue.
Sandy had spoken earlier about not having been tempted yet to trade some pitching depth for a really good outfielder, or for anything else, but he then rattled off a dozen or so names and talked about the minor league roster crunch and that perhaps he’d be tempted soon. My question was meant to be a followup to that, where I asked, or tried to ask, what would push that temptation to the point that a trade is made?
He responded with a lot of talk about how close they came to making some moves with Bourn or Upton, and talked confidentially about the club, but it did dance around the question a bit. I was trying to figure out what the factor would be that changed his mindset from tempting to need and if part of the temptation might stem from the current plan getting derailed a little bit?
Perhaps if I could’ve asked a followup question I would’ve asked “If the Mets had won 83 games last year instead of what they did, is it more likely you would’ve traded for Upton?” What I was really looking for is if the temptation to trade these players is going to be the result of the team’s success, or is going to drive the team’s success. When does focus shift from making shrewd transactions to needing to acquire the player you want, even if it’s an overpay. Is it only when adding a player like Justin Upton makes the Mets a favorite to make the playoffs, or can it be done simply to make the team better and let other factors, such as long-term success from Zack Wheeler, be what puts them over the top?
The Mets are the aware of blogs, and their importance to the baseball community. This has become increasingly obvious, but it was still a shock to be invited to a conference call with Mets VP Dave Howard who not only was kind enough to do this call with us, but also confessed to reading at least one Mets blog. He also got in a subtle dig at Yankee fans (seems to be a common topic lately) when he mentioned how passionate Mets fans are and how many more Mets blogs there are than Yankees blogs. The topic of the day was the new ticket information; something that affects everyone from blogging fans to casual fans. For specific details about the new pricing schemes, giveaways, and breakdowns (and really for future details, since he’s always on top of it) go read Mets Police’s breakdown. On the Black has a recap of the call as well, as do others that I haven’t yet seen this morning.
We are that next bridge to the masses of Mets fans. The casual/mainstream fan base is out there, not on Twitter and not blogging, but they’re out there in the world. They’re coworkers, friends, family, the UPS guy, and the girl you buy your coffee from in the morning. They don’t always follow closely. They may not read the papers to stay up to date on the Mets transactions. They don’t get text messages that read “Mets got Johan!” Their number one source of Mets news is you and me.
Many of us that are “Big Mets Fan” have become, by way of our enthusiasm, the go to person to ask about the Mets. That enthusiasm spreads; if we’re excited about the team we start talking about it with the more casual fans. We ask the UPS guy at work if he saw the game, we linger buying our bagel in the morning because the cashier wants to know who was pitching last night.
We are a conduit of Mets excitement, and the idea that Alderson and the Mets are aware of Twitter and blogs is a pleasing one. The initial reaction to a 62 year old man is not usually one that’s comfortable with some of these social media advances. The Mets over the past year or so have been communicating more and more with bloggers and fans directly. They’ve created a Facebook page and a Twitter account and even let fans get involved in the process sometimes. So far it looks like Sandy Alderson is aware of the changing world and how it applies to baseball. This means more to me than some success he had in a different world with a different team 20 years ago.
So far the words Alderson speak give me hope that the actions he needs to take over the next five months and beyond will help take us to the playoffs consistently. He’ll have a lot to do this offseason, and I’m hoping most Mets fans are as optimistic about our new general manager when the season starts as they are now. If Alderson can keep us happy and excited, that excitement will trickle down the line as we talk up the Mets, as we talk up our new and old players. I don’t believe more fans will buy season tickets because of a GM, but if he’s paying attention to the most rabid of us, I do believe more fans will believe a Mets game is a valid use of their entertainment dollar as the season gets going.
Tags: blogging, conference call, dave howard, Mets, mets bloggers, mets blogs, mets ticket price decrease, mets ticket prices, mets tickets, New York Mets, price reductions, sandy alderson, social media, ticket reductions