San Francisco acquired second baseman Freddy Sanchez from Pittsburgh in mid-2009 and then signed him to a two-year, $12 million contract extension despite his playing poorly while missing time with injuries down the stretch.
He bounced back with a productive 2010, albeit while missing another 50 games with injuries, and now the two sides have agreed to tack another year onto his deal.
Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com reports that Sanchez will get $6 million for 2012, which seems fair considering his current $6 million salary and the fact that he basically duplicated his career numbers last year, hitting .292 with a .342 on-base percentage and .397 on-base percentage.
Sanchez has struggled to stay on the field, playing just 222 of a possible 324 games in the past two seasons, and he’ll be 34 years old before the extension kicks in, but it’s tough for a team to get burned too badly on a one-year commitment and he’s been an above-average second baseman in all but one of the past six years.
It’s can’t be easy being a Mets fan. Your team plays in the biggest city in America and should, theoretically, have big payrolls and always be in contention. They aren’t, however, partially because of horrendous luck and ill-timed injuries, partially because of poor baseball decisions and partially because the team’s ownership got taken down by a Ponzi scheme that, one would think anyway, sophisticated businessmen would recognize as a Ponzi scheme. We’ll leave that go, though.
What Mets fans are left with are (a) occasional windows of contention, such as we saw in 2014-16; (b) times of frustrating austerity on the part of ownership when, one would hope anyway, some money would be spent; (c) an inordinate focus on tabloidy and scandalous nonsense which just always seems to surround the club; and (c) a lot of disappointment.
You can file this latest bit under any of or many of the above categories, but it is uniquely Mets.
Team president Jeff Wilpon spoke to the press this afternoon about team payroll. In talking about payroll, David Wright‘s salary was included despite the fact that he may never play again and despite the fact that insurance is picking up most of the tab. Wilpon’s comment:
I’m guessing every team has a line item, someplace, about the costs of insurance. They’re businesses after all, and all businesses have to deal with that. They do not talk about it as a barrier to spending more money on players to the press, however, as they likely know that fans want to be told a story of hope and baseball-driven decisions heading into a new season and do not want to hear about all of the reasons the club will not spend any money despite sitting in a huge market.
This doesn’t change a thing about what the Mets were going to do or not do, but it does have the added bonus of making Mets fans roll their eyes and ask themselves what they did to deserve these owners. And that, more than almost anything, is the essence of Mets fandom these days.