Here’s a question for you. If you had a GM that gave a bad contract to a 35 year old, forfeiting a pick in the process, and depleted it’s farm system of its top end starting pitching prospects for rentals, what would you call that GM? Apparently, you call Sandy Alderson the Executive of the Year.
Before proceeding, I’d like to note Alderson has generally done a good job with the Mets. The R.A. Dickey trade was a stroke of genius. However, that happened three years ago, and this is a 2015 award.
Alderson made two major league free agent signings for the 2015 season. The first was Michael Cuddyer. It was immediately panned by everyone. Alderson was out-maneuvered there by the Rockies of all organizations. With the Mets all but declaring they were signing David Wright‘s friend, the Rockies gave Cuddyer a qualifying offer. The Mets then gave Cuddyer a two year $21 million contract. Cuddyer was hurt, and he regressed as 35 year old players do. He’s now a $12.5 million bench player.
The other free agent deal was John Mayberry, Jr. Mayberry hit .164/.227/.318. He was released at the end of July. Overall, Alderson’s free agent acquisitions were complete busts.
His trades weren’t much better. Do you realize for a team touted with organizational starting pitching depth, Alderson depleted much of it. He traded eight minor league arms in total. For all the pitchers that were traded, Addison Reed is the only player the Mets could keep in 2016. By the way, Reed is a non-tender candidate.
Yes, the Mets made the World Series. They also lost it. For all the moves and sacrificing the future, the Mets still fell short. Further, it does not appear the moves generated enough revenue to sufficiently increase payroll. In the end, the Mets have up two big pitching prospects for rentals. If you’re saying it was worth it, I ask you if John Smoltz was worth it?
In 1987, Smoltz was traded for Doyle Alexander. Alexander went 9-0 with a 1.53 ERA for the Tigers. His fantastic run certainly mirrors the run Yoenis Cespedes had this year. Like the Mets, the Tigers won their division. Like the Mets, the Tigers didn’t win the World Series. The Tigers lost out on a Hall of Fame career. Time will only tell with Michael Fulmer. However, we do know he’s a highly rated prospect the Tigers believe can contribute very soon.
It’s the reason I said it was a bad trade from the beginning. It’s even worse when you consider the Tigers had to trade Cespedes because they were about to lose him for nothing.
Then there’s the issue of giving up another well regarded prospect in Casey Meisner for Tyler Clippard. Clippard was a rental. Yes, Clippard was terrific early on with the Mets, and he helped the Mets win the division. Addison Reed was even better, and the Mets obtained him for much less. Again, this was a bad trade.
No, Alderson won this award for his earlier work and the system built by Omar Minaya. Alderson weakened the farm system in 2015, and he may now need to trade away major league talent rather than minor leaguers to improve the team in 2016. After all his moves, the Mets still don’t have a shortstop. There may also be new holes in center and at second.
Alderson has had a good run here, but he was not good in 2015. He certainly wasn’t the best executive in 2015. Unfortunately, this should bear out in the oncoming years.