News broke early Friday morning that the New York Mets and David Wright agreed to terms on a 7-year contract extension. Wright is one of the best third basemen in baseball, so it’s wise of the Mets to keep him. But there’s one aspect of the agreement that is intentionally misleading. Don’t fall for the PR game.
If you look at the way the contract is being reported by WFAN’s Ed Coleman — who works for the team’s flagship radio station — what’s being highlighted is that the Mets are making Wright the highest-paid player in franchise history. They’re doing that because the Mets want people to think that they are still a financially sound club that is willing to spend big money, even though they’re not.
The truth, if Ed Coleman’s report for WFAN is to be believed, is that the Mets are giving Wright a seven-year extension for $122 million. Smart outlets are reporting the contract that way, because that’s what it is. Those falling for the Mets’ trick are calling it the “richest in team history,” or some variation of that phrase. If Wright is taking that contract, then he is agreeing to a below-market deal. Are you telling me Wright couldn’t get $150 million on the free agent market? I’ve got one answer for you: Do the Dodgers need a third baseman?
The only way Wright’s new 7-year, $122 million deal tops Johan Santana’s 6-year, $137.5 million deal is if you add in the $16 million Wright was already scheduled to make next season. The Mets are only giving him $122 million more in NEW guaranteed money. His contract falls short of Santana’s on an average annual salary basis, which means he’s not the highest-paid player on the team.
And how cheap are the Mets? They only beat Santana’s contract by a half-million dollars.
Again, this is all based on the contract details reported by WFAN. If their report proves to be inaccurate, I will apologize. Until then, don’t believe the spin on the deal; the Mets are not the big spenders they’d like you to believe they are.