All of that speculation as to what will lure Craig Counsell to the New York Mets and it comes down to the almighty dollar apparently. Counsell is reportedly willing to return to the Milwaukee Brewers if they’re able to match the best offer he receives.
“Best” can really only mean two things: money and years. Counsell has every right to demand as many of both. Hello, free market system.
Fully aware that the one thing the Mets do have over anyone else is their owner’s wallet, it seems all it will take is for Steve Cohen to agree to give Counsell the ‘Rod Tidwell’ treatment. Jerry Maguire is currently streaming on AMC+ in case anyone under 25 has no idea what this means.
Should the Mets show Craig Counsell the money?
Interestingly, the previously reported highest salary of any MLB manager belonged to one of the skippers Counsell may actually replace. Terry Francona, who made $5 million in 2023. The vacancy he leaves with the Cleveland Guardians will at least pose a threat to the Mets unless they’re willing to go a little further and help Counsell in his pursuit of resetting the manager market.
Other candidates the Mets have been interviewing, including Carlos Mendoza and Andy Green, have felt like a rung below Counsell at the very least. After witnessing Dusty Baker win in 2022 and Bruce Bochy do so in 2023, the fan’s desire for an experienced manager is something many of us are probably sharing more than ever. Rookie managers are fine, but when a guy like Counsell is available, interested, and all it’ll take is money, it’s hard to accept him not ending up with the Mets at this point.
We sometimes forget managers are seeking out the best contracts for themselves just as players do. The Mets, who already put David Stearns in a tie for the highest-paid executive in the game, simply need to pay Counsell if they want him. Did he have them from ‘hello’ or will they go in another direction?
Paying the most money doesn’t always yield the greatest of results. However, when we see the Mets are already paying middle relievers more than last year’s highest-paid manager, it’s hard to let Counsell go back to the Brewers or anywhere else.