Open season on Wilpons

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A losing season can make a fanbase batty. Plenty of blame has been spread around from the manager to the general manager to the players. That’s what it comes down to in this disappointing Mets season.

Now that everyone finished blaming Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, Mets manager Terry Collins, Rafael Montero, Yoenis Cespedes, Matt Harvey, any Mets reliever and the Mets medical staff, they have focused on blaming Mets owners Fred Wilpon and Jeff Wilpon. They have always been the ire of Mets fans whenever things go bad for the Mets.

That’s the way it goes when the Mets did not spend money this past offseason to improve the team from last year. That’s the way it goes when they traded Jay Bruce just for the sake of salary dump. That’s the way it goes when this franchise is going on a 31-year championship drought. The buck always stops with ownership.

The Wilpons lost credibility with Mets fans long time ago, and that goes back to before Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme of taking money from them. They have always been content with mediocrity and making money. They always make news for all the wrong reasons whether it’s the team’s ineptitude or the stupidity of the front office and manager when it comes to working on a roster. They never go the extra mile to get the last piece that would help them win a championship such as the 2000 offseason when they did not sign Alex Rodriguez or Manny Ramirez after coming off a World Series appearance in 2000. They sure didn’t do much to get to be in that position the last two years, either.

No one can blame the Mets fans for being fed up with them, especially when then-Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig was able to get disgraced Dodgers owner Frank McCourt out of baseball while Wilpons get to stay despite having no more money to operate a team as a result of being a victim of a Ponzi scheme.

The Wilpons did themselves no favors on Wednesday night when they forced Alderson to trade Bruce to the Indians for a prospect that is a project in Ryder Ryan, a Single-A player that has a 4.79 ERA in 33 relief appearances.

Don’t make me laugh saying this was a baseball trade. This was to cut salary and free up playing time for Dominic Smith, who makes his Major League debut Friday night against the Phillies in Philadelphia. It’s hard to say the Mets received anything good in return for a player that led the team in homers (29) and RBIs (75).

The Mets were better off keeping Bruce the rest of the season and then get a compensatory draft pick if he leaves despite getting a qualifying offer. What’s the difference between a compensatory draft pick and a prospect that is a project? Both could be a reach. And please don’t say this was to make room for Smith. They can call up their prized prospect and play him at first while Bruce can go back to playing in the outfield.

There was no reason to trade their best slugger for the sake of making a trade. The Mets couldn’t get a taker for his service this season for a valuable piece, so it’s odd they let him go for nothing.

There were reports the Yankees offered better prospects for Bruce than the Indians did, but the Mets did not accept it since they did not want to pay a portion of his $5 million salary. Since no one knows what the prospects were, the Mets will get the benefit of the doubt for not making that trade. There is no way they should pay Bruce to do his thing for the Yankees, especially if the prospects are unknown.

If the Mets were unsure of the Yankees prospects, it makes even less sense to trade Bruce to the Indians if Ryan is nothing more than a spare part. It’s hard to believe Alderson wanted to make this trade in the first place. He is competent enough to not give Bruce away for nothing, so we can deduce that it was the Wilpons’ call to get rid of the Mets slugger’s salary.

If the Wilpons are in cost-cutting mode already, what evidence is out there that they will spend all that free money to free agents such as Mike Moustakas, Jonathan Lucroy, Wade Davis, Jake McGee and Tony Watson in the offseason to fill the Mets’ needs? They haven’t spent in years outside of giving Cespedes a long-term extension. If they are going to spend, they will use that money to give Jacob deGrom an extension, and that will be it.

Mets fans know better than to get their hopes up. They will not be treated like suckers, and no one can blame them after watching the Wilpons fail time after time.

Blaming Collins and Alderson will do no good. All they are doing is following orders from their boss. Firing them will do no good, either since it would be nothing more than a cosmetic move. As long as the Wilpons are owning the Mets, nothing is changing.

After watching the Dodgers sweep the Mets this past weekend at Citi Field, fans can only be envious about the Dodgers new ownership being all in while Mets current ownership that is forced by Selig can only focus on staying solvent.

Just seeing Dodgers fans celebrate in all three games at Citi Field as if they were at Dodger Stadium only add to Mets fans’ fury towards the Wilpons, Selig and Major League Baseball.

The Wilpons will bear the brunt of the Mets fans’ anger. They have tolerated it for a long time, so this is nothing for them.

Such is life for Mets fans.

Leslie Monteiro

Leslie Monteiro is a syndicated sports columnist who covers Tri-State area teams for the Upstate Courier. He is based in Fort Lee, New Jersey and can be reached on Twitter @MongoGoesInSane.

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