Man I was mean but I'm changing my sceneAnd I'm doing the best that I can
I've got to admit it's getting better (Better)A little better all the time (It can't get no worse)
Those words have played in my head during many tough times. Sometimes, it was just whistling in the dark, trying to convince myself that things would get better when I really didn't believe that to be true. Other times, I felt optimistic that things were about to turn around.
In my Mets fandom, I have resorted to trying to believe things were getting better many times over the years. From time to time, things actually did improve. Still, those good times tended to end all too quickly. The last years of the Wilpon era stand out as truly dark times when the owners had little money to conceal their inability to grow a real organization. It was great fun when the club made it to the 2015 World Series. Still, it was hard to see it as anything more than just a brief, fabulous stretch of baseball where everything went right. When the penurious owners allowed Daniel Murphy to sign with their chief Division rivals in Washington, I just knew things wouldn't end well, and they didn't.
The main reason I stopped blogging for over a decade was an inability on my part to feel that things could get better with Fred, Jeff, and Uncle Saul running the show. And it wasn't just because the Madoff Ponzi scheme unraveling left them broke. I felt that this financial disaster, as destructive as it was to how the Wilpons operated the Mets, gave them one last chance to reevaluate their failure to create the sort of infrastructure that teams in much smaller markets used to succeed in MLB against wealthier opponents.
But, sadly, predictable as always, the Wilpons refused to change, instead trying to bluff their way through their lack of resources by claiming that things were fine and dandy. They weren't, of course. It was heartening in the early months of 2020 when Steve Cohen was first trying to purchase the Mets, then devastating when it fell through due to ridiculous demands that Fred and Jeff continue to run the franchise for five more years.
Still, it became clear in the spring of 2020 that the Wilpons would have to find a buyer, complicated by the arrival of COVID-19 and the ensuing shutdown of much of life as we know it, including baseball. The time on my hands, thanks to the pandemic and then my first back injury, got me back into blogging. But it was the feeling that it really, finally had a chance to get better with the club that inspired me to write about the Mets again, as I dreamed about what a new owner could bring to the club.
- An owner with a vision for the future who is willing to be aggressive when it's called for and strategic when it's not. After so many years of the club trying to overcome their owners, Steve Cohen has proven to be a real asset.
- A President of Baseball Ops acknowledged as one of the best in MLB and who is familiar with the non-glamourous work that is the foundation of strong operations.
- Investment in technology, such as the new pitching and hitting labs, will enable the Mets to compete with more advanced clubs.
- Hiring the right coaches and organizational people to take maximum advantage of the technology.