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Sandy Alderson Sets the Record Straight About Next Year’s Payroll

These are better days for the Mets, and by "better days," we mean yesterday and today, as opposed to Monday and Tuesday. Earlier in the week, stories about the club centered around bleeding cash and pantomiming heartbreaking strikeouts. But today brought news that the Mets have found their minority investor, and yesterday Sandy Alderson explained that while the team's payroll will be lower next year, the cuts shouldn't be quite as drastic as has been suggested this week. That's considered good news, right?

Here's Alderson, speaking with Mike Francesa:

"My operating premise is that let's say we're at $140 or $145 [million] now. This [Sports Illustrated] article mentioned $100 [million]. I'd expect to be somewhere in between based on the conversations that I have had. The other thing that one should keep in mind is there have been discussions with a potential minority investor, and obviously budgets have been prepared with that in mind, and so as I said the $100 million number has never really come up, and I would expect it would be somewhere north of that and south of $145 [million]."

That's a pretty big range, so it doesn't tell us too much about how much they'll be willing to spend in the off-season. (For what it's worth, the Post wrote that "Alderson says he has not spoken with Wilpon since the article came out, but something in the $120 million range for his 2012 budget sounded reasonable." The paper then relayed similar remarks to the ones Alderson made to Francesa, about how the payroll would be between $100 million and the current payroll figure of about $140 million.)

And at least Alderson is keeping his sense of humor about all of this. From the Post:

"I was thinking, if the world had ended on Saturday, we wouldn't have to deal with these things," Alderson said, a joking reference to the apocalypse predictions that didn't pan out last weekend.

Oh, and here's some more good news: The Mets won last night, in a rain-shortened game at Wrigley.This year's team is still playing, you know.

Photo: G Fiume/Getty Images