With the Mets still playing just good enough to be four games back in the Wild Card standings prior to Wednesday’s game, General Manger Sandy Alderson has some tough choices to make.

Alderson will have to balance a delicate situation in the next month by trying to please a growing apathetic Mets’ fanbase, while also trying to build a competent ballclub through his own innovative visions.

These two ideologies are set to clash in the upcoming weeks. Either way you slice it, the choice Alderson makes to determine the Mets’ future will undoubtedly be universally un-liked.

Channeling your inner die-hard fandom, you have to love how gritty and determined the Mets are playing in the face of adversity(injuries, economic woes, owner tirades).

Who doesn’t enjoy the Mets getting unexpected production from the likes of Justin Turner, Ruben Tejada and Dillon Gee?

Who doesn’t get a smile out of the improvement Daniel Murphy has made in the last month or so?

This club just does not quit, and that’s what you love to see as a fan. When the Mets get their full lineup back with the return of David Wright and Ike Davis (not to mention the anticipated return of Johan Santana), there is a faction of fans/media that think the Mets could contend for a wild card spot.

It’s not a real stretch to imagine they can’t. After starting 5-13, the Mets have gone 24-19 (which places them well above the means in the NL) since.

And that’s why it will be so hard to say goodbye to fan favorites like Jose Reyes, if Alderson does decide to trade him at the deadline, as everyone is penciling him to do.

Trading Reyes would absolutely cripple any chance the Mets would have at the postseason (basically rendering them hopeless). Dealing Reyes would also strip the fanbase of any plausible excitement in the last few months of the season. A reason to go to the park, if you will.

Even with a full lineup, does Alderson really think this team can contend as presently constituted? That’s a tough decision he’s got to deal with. He can’t think like a fan, he’s got to think like an executive.That’s what he’s getting paid the big bucks for.

We haven’t even delved into the possibility of trading other cornerstone players like Carlos Beltran and Francisco Rodriguez.

Regardless of how well, or not well, the Mets are doing in the present, Alderson has to think what his team is going to look like in 2012 and beyond.

Playing devil’s advocate, can Alderson even afford Reyes? Wouldn’t he have to pay ‘Carl Crawford money’? As owner Fred Wilpon has notoriously said, he’s not worth it, and he isn’t going to get that type of money.

And continuing to play devil’s advocate, wouldn’t it also be prudent to deal Beltran and K-Rod (granted he would waive his vesting 2012 vesting option in a trade) when their value is as high as it can get.

After returning from my recent trip to Las Vegas, I am reminded of the old poker adage. You got to know when to hold them, and know when to fold them. With just a few weeks until the trade deadline, the clock is ticking.

The pot is building and the stakes are getting higher, and Alderson has to make the ‘call’ of his life, or make the safe ‘fold’ and rebuild for the future.

The thing is, a ‘call’ (retaining at least Reyes til the end of 2011) might appease the fan base, but a ‘fold’ might be the economical, and as painful as it is to say,  most sensible thing to do.

4 comments on “Month of June could ultimately define Alderson’s tenure with Mets

  • Metsense

    The Mets need to keep their strenghts and improve their weaknesses. If Beltran and K-Rod can bring back something then they should go for it. The only players that should not be traded is Reyes, Davis and Niese. The only reason Wright could be expendable is that there are adequate 3B in the system (notice I say adequate not Wright replaceable)and DW might get us a #1 or #2 pitcher back.(pitching is our biggest weakness) Murphy to the AL could maybe get someting back.Pelfry may draw interest and from some teams that need pitching Capuano or Dickey. The Mets need to upgrade their pitching. Too many #4 and #5 without any #1 and #2. (at least until Santana gets healhy probably in 2012)There are many options that could be used to improve the team. Sandy will have to be creative, trade for good value and restructure this team on the fly so that they can compete. I’m confident in his ability to do this. I don’t think a “fold” is a necessary option.

  • Dan Stack

    I agree on most points. At this point, I would too try my hardest to sign Reyes and go aggressively after pitching.

  • Mike Koehler

    While Tejada, Turner and Murphy continue to hit, what gets lost in translation is that the Mets would be fine in RF this year if Bay could find himself again. How good has Pridie been, keeping the likes of Hairston and Harris off the field?

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