The Mets are off today, so there doesn’t necessarily have to be a meet-the-press moment for the main players in Fred Wilpon-a-palooza until another day of the news cycle has passed. But at least one of the players called out by Fred Wilpon in the New Yorker profile — David Wright — has responded. And he has done so in a manner that suggests that maybe — just maybe — this could blow over with less craziness than one might expect:
“Fred is a good man and is obviously going through some difficult times. There is nothing more productive I can say at this time.”
I wonder if Reyes and Beltran will follow Wright’s lead and play the pity card rather then take a swipe back. They’d be smart to, but really, I can’t say how I’d respond if my boss showed such a lack of discretion in a big feature article in the New Yorker.
Either way, the real damage here is the internal damage in terms of how the clubhouse responds and whether these sorts of comments by the owner sours players to coming to New York and all of that. The responses of Wright, Beltran, Reyes and others, however, will likely determine the kind of shelf life this all has as a media story.
Tim Tebow isn’t letting go of his major league dreams just yet. The former NFL quarterback is slated to appear with the Mets during spring training this year, extending what initially looked like an ill-fated career choice for at least one more season. Per the club’s official announcement on Friday, he’ll join a group of spring training invitees that includes top-30 prospects like Peter Alonso, P.J. Conlon, Patrick Mazeika and David Thompson.
Tebow, 30, hasn’t taken to professional baseball as gracefully as expected. He batted a cumulative .226/.309/.347 with eight home runs and a .656 OPS in 486 plate appearances for Single-A Columbia and High-A St. Lucie in 2017. While that wasn’t enough to compel the Mets to give the aging outfielder a big league tryout, there’s no denying that Tebow brought substantial benefit to their minor league affiliates — in the form of increased attendance figures and ticket sales, that is.
Even after the Mets were booted from the NL East race last September, they resisted the idea of promoting Tebow for a late-season attendance boost of their own. That’s not to say they’re planning on taking the same approach in 2018; Tebow will undoubtedly get his cup of coffee in the majors at some point, but for now, a Grapefruit League tryout is likely as close as he’ll ever get to playing with the team’s big league roster on an everyday basis.