If there’s any team in baseball that fits the underdog description, it is without question a franchise playing in the country’s largest media market. Yup, the New York Mets are easily one of the biggest underdog franchises in sports. Well, at least that’s what out-of-touch COO Jeff Wilpon believes.
Wilpon, already known as a feisty character, had t-shirts with the U logo from the cartoon Underdog sitting in each Mets player’s locker Monday.
Manager Terry Collins is either kissing up to his boss, or he likes the idea.
“I thought Jeff had a great idea. He made some T-shirts up — ‘Underdog’ stuff,” said Collins. “You know what? If it ticks you off, then we’re doing our job. You’ve got to know how you’re being felt out there.”
Third baseman David Wright was less of a fan, but he understands the message.
“I don’t really like using the whole underdog thing,” he said. “I don’t like really playing that card. I think it’s just a way to remind everybody in here that the outside expectations aren’t the expectations that we have for ourselves. And I think Terry did a good job of kind of conveying it today, because obviously the expectations from the outside are low, and understandably so.
“But we in here kind of have to rally around that and get it going. I guess, at the end of the day, that is kind of an underdog theme. But we shouldn’t view ourselves as that. We’ll let everybody else view ourselves as that, because I think we kind of know what we’re capable of doing.”
David is a wise man. He knows gimmicks like this can only lead to more ridicule for the franchise. He also probably sees what everyone else does — the Mets are only resorting to the “underdog” label because their owners either were (foolishly?) scammed on their investments with Bernie Madoff. Sorry, but that sympathy card doesn’t work with us.
Picture via the MetsGoogle+