How wealthy is Steve Cohen? He’s so rich he can sign free agents in September to record-setting deals—or at least tie them. According to Bill Madden, the New York Mets are paying David Stearns in more than experience. He’ll be raking in $10 million per year over the next five years.
Living in New York is expensive. Having a boss with money to spare only adds to the necessary record-tying contract the Mets handed to Stearns. Plus, with other teams surely seeking out his services, it was necessary to at least match what the Los Angeles Dodgers gave to Andrew Friedman.
No one is complaining today. The best way Cohen could have spent $10 million on a free agent was to lure Stearns back to where he never should have left.
NY Mets owner Steve Cohen has weaponized his wallet for more than players
It wasn’t until the 2023 season when Cohen fully unleashed his spending power on the roster. Pairing Max Scherzer with Justin Verlander turned out to be a financial mistake yet one he was able to help dig himself out of by continuing to pay the players in exchange for prospects. It’s genius when you think about it. It’s going head first into a sunk cost but coming away without any scratches.
There are far worse ways to spend $10 million. With Stearns, a guy who will only dress up in a baseball uniform on October 31, the impact is far greater than any one individual player. He won’t have the ability to make those around him better like some of the best athletes are known to do. Stearns gets to pick those athletes instead.
It’s these kinds of “hidden” expenditures that can go unnoticed. The Mets’ analytical department has slowly improved during the Cohen regime even if a tough critic like Verlander can come in and point out how far behind they are compared to the Houston Astros.
Stearns will have his work cut out for him. What kind of stamp will he look to make on the franchise immediately? He’s more expensive than most of the players. We should expect a performance matching the salary.