He might not return as GM.
Mets GM Sandy Alderson will be taking a leave of absence from his role due to a recurrence of cancer, which he originally fought in 2015. In his absence, a trio of assistants will take over baseball operations responsibilities: John Ricco, JP Ricciardi and Omar Minaya.
The good news is that Alderson said his prognosis looks good and he’s expecting to have surgery over the summer, with his treatment already underway.
The more interesting piece of the announcement though, is that he may not return to the team in his current role. According to The Athletic’s Tim Britton, when asked about the possibility of a return as GM, Alderson said “If I were to look at it on the merits, I’m not sure coming back is warranted.”
It’s a depressing statement, but not for Alderson. He deserves all the time he needs to recuperate and come back stronger than ever. But for Mets fan who might have still been holding out hope for this season, hearing from your own GM that the season is a lost cause — and that he’s confronting his role in it — isn’t what you’re hoping for.
His health might not have allowed him to come back regardless, but Alderson said “one factor is health, another factor is merit” when it comes to a return. So even if he was recovered enough to come back, the Mets’ forecast is already so bad that it doesn’t seem realistic. He even admitted why.
“We signed, I don’t know, five, six free agents over the offseason. And really not one of them has performed up to their expectations or probably ours, either. One, it’s a bad result. But at the same time, I think it’s a commentary on the process. And I think that that’s something that one has to revisit. ... I wouldn’t call those mistakes, but they certainly did not turn out as we had hoped. And this is a results business.”
This isn’t the way most Mets fans would have expected to see the book closed on the season and possibly Alderson’s career. But now it’s going to be about wishing Alderson the best in his latest bout with cancer, and looking ahead to see if there’s away to fix some of those merit-based mistakes with or without his return.