Are the Mets in serious financial trouble?

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The New York Post is quoting anonymous investment bankers and others reportedly with knowledge of the Mets’ finances who say that the Wilpon family is strapped for cash, saddled in debt and that they could even have to sell the team if things don’t turn around quickly. The report itself might be just as troubling as the news therein, however.

From what I can tell, just about all the specifics — the Madoff scam, the fact that the team is heavily in debt, the fact that Citi Field bonds are now at junk status and the fact that attendance, and thus gate, is way down — are old news. There was one thing I hadn’t seen — that the Wilpons mortgaged the team to the tune of $375 million — but the fact that they were able to do so in this tight credit environment suggests that someone is actually optimistic, as opposed to pessimistic — about their and the Mets’ earning ability doesn’t it?

The only inside source on which the Post relies sounds more like loose and opinionated lips of someone with vague knowledge of the team’s finances as opposed to someone who’s actually intimately familiar with them.  Quotes like “the family is no longer a bottomless pit” just don’t sound like they came from someone in the business office. The rest of the article is speculation based on those facts listed above that were already known.

I’m not saying that things are rosy — the team could very well be having more financial trouble than we know about — but this article seems like a lot more noise than information.

Cardinals shut down Carlos Martínez for two weeks due to shoulder issue

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MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosh reports that the Cardinals are shutting down pitcher Carlos Martínez from throwing for two weeks because his shoulder strength isn’t where it should have been at this point. Langosch added that an MRI showed no structural damage in Martínez’s right shoulder.

Interestingly, president of baseball operations John Mozeliak didn’t sound too happy with Martínez offseason training regimen. Per Mark Saxon of The Athletic, Mozeliak said, “Obviously, there’s a history with Carlos’ shoulder and it would be probably in everybody’s best interest if he maintained a constant or perpetual approach to that program.”

Martínez, 27, battled oblique and shoulder injuries last year. He accrued just 118 2/3 innings, making just 18 starts. He was moved to the bullpen when he returned from the disabled list in August and finished out the season in that role. Still, Martínez managed a 3.11 ERA with 117 strikeouts and 60 walks.

Langosch reported last week that the Cardinals were considering using Martínez in relief again in 2019. The latest news may push the Cardinals to indeed use Martínez out of the bullpen once again. He will be reevaluated in early March, but there is a chance he won’t be ready for Opening Day.