The Mets lost $50 million last year


When it was learned that the Mets took a loan from Major League Baseball, it was characterized by some as an instance of a team merely addressing a short term liquidity problem during those cold dark days between seasons.  Seems it was a bit more than that. The New York Times:

The Mets, long one of baseball’s most highly valued franchises, have lost millions of dollars in recent years, including nearly $50 million in 2010, according to two people briefed on the team’s finances … the club’s falloff in revenue was the largest year-to-year decline for any major league team in recent years … overall revenue slid by more than $60 million

Though team financial data is a closely-guarded secret, that’s thought to be the largest slide in revenue since the 1998 Florida Marlins, reeling from their World Series winning roster being torn to shreds, slid from fifth to 13th in attendance in the National League.  In the past three seasons the Mets have slid from first to fifth to eighth in attendance. I would assume that their projections of what life would be like upon moving in to Citi Field didn’t anticipate that.

But hey: Castillo and Perez are gone, and I was led to believe that once that happened, everything would be OK!

Ryan Zimmerman’s spring training has been . . . weird

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Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman has played in exactly one Grapefruit league game this year, and that was way back on March 2. Since then he has been totally absent from the Nats’ big league spring games, playing instead on the back fields in sim games and in minor league contests.

While that’s not an unusual course of action for an injured or rehabbing player, both Zimmerman and the Nationals insist that there is nothing wrong with him. Per this report from MASN’s Mark Zuckerman, they’re saying that Zimmerman “simply prefers to get his work done in the more controlled environment of minor league games, where the rules are lax.” He doesn’t have to dive for balls, he can lead off every inning, etc. Manager Dave Martinez says Zimmerman simply doesn’t like the usual spring training grind and that this is working for him so he’s fine with it too.

Are you buyin’ that? Not sure I’m buyin’ that.

I suppose weirder things have happened. The Minnesota Twins once let Jack Morris go back to his farm in between starts rather than stay with the club. Other accommodations have been made for veterans, especially in spring training. But this is way more in keeping with a team hiding an injury. Though I have no idea why the Nats would choose to hide an injury to Zimmerman. They’ve talked at length about Daniel Murphy‘s knees and Adam Eaton‘s seemingly never-ending rehab. If Zimmerman has some aches and pains, you’d think they’d talk about it.

On the other hand, if this is a legit story and it is simply an accommodation for a veteran who doesn’t like the normal spring training grind, look for Zimmerman to be a trailblazer, because there are a LOT of dudes who hate spring training too and would love to change things up like this.