The New York Mets can, and should fall back on their billionaire owner

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Welp, so much for that idea. Yoshinobu Yamamoto is a Los Angeles Dodger, and the New York Mets are still the Mets. After putting on a full-court press for the Japanese ace, giving it 115 percent, and leaving it all on the field, owner Steve Cohen’s efforts amounted to diddly squat. Now it’s back to the drawing board, or as Mets fans more commonly refer to it, a drab, depressing existence occasionally highlighted by spurts of misguided optimism.

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The club hasn’t done everything right since Cohen took over, but it was Cohen taking over that was supposed to fix everything the Wilpons could not. While the Mets might not have the basic knowledge yet, and who knows how long Cohen will listen to the logic of new front office man David Stearns, they possess an owner who’s committed and willing to spend gobs of money, a fanbase dying for success, and a market large enough to attract big-name free agents.

At the risk of getting laughed out of sports writing, what’s so different about the Amazins and Dodgers? I know, I know, but strip away the organizational stability, player development, and past decade of success, and the foundations aren’t too dissimilar. What’s to keep New York’s other team from leapfrogging its cross-town rival the way Man City usurped Man United?

“How long have you got?” asks the audience.

It’s also kind of hard to become Man City when the Dodgers have accounted for more than half of all money dropped in free agency thus far. That said, the Mets were the big spenders a year ago, and though it blew up in their faces like a novelty cigar, big market + hedge fund owner = success, correct?

That’s probably a little reductive, and overlooks the nuance that goes into building a contender, but the Dodgers might’ve set a new bar with the Shohei Ohtani and Yamamoto signings. The number of billionaires and private equity groups with unspeakable amounts of money is rising, and once they’re in the door, it becomes an Aspen problem.

There’s only a finite amount of real estate, and eventually, the multi-billionaire owners will push out the millionaires, or at least relegate them to AFC Bournemouth status. If you root for a club whose ownership group is worth less than what the Dodgers shelled out this offseason, you might be proper f*cked. And that’s especially true in a sport without a salary cap.

This Cody Bellinger guy is pretty good, and he had a positive impact on the Cubs’ locker room last season. Perhaps an overpay is in order if not required. That doesn’t mean Cohen should spend superfluously like a shopping addict on a bender; just overdo it with deserving players.

Take Jordan Montgomery for example. He’s already been run out of New York once, so that’s a red flag. I know Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander had dry rot, but maybe try giving money to a pitcher under the age of 38? Blake Snell doesn’t suck, is technically still in his 20s, and won’t cost the Mets any prospects.

“What about the money?”

Yes, what about it? The pundits appalled by the Dodgers’ hostile takeover of MLB clearly haven’t been paying attention to business outside of baseball. Is this sustainable? Will it lead to the downfall of … something? No, yes, and that something is probably the least wealthy teams.

And, hey, at least that’s not the Mets, right? 

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