Mets History

5 times the Wilpon Family were not cheap

Sep 30, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets chief operations officer Jeff Wilpon addresses
Sep 30, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets chief operations officer Jeff Wilpon addresses / Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
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If you ask any New York Mets fan or even baseball fan for that matter, they should know that the Wilpon family always had the tendency to be on the cheaper side.

The Wilpon family originally became part owners of the Mets back in 1980 when they bought a 5% stake of the team. Fast forward to the end of 1986 and the Wilpons would become 50% shareholders. Now fast forward even more to August of 2002 when the Wilpons become the sole owners of the team in orange and blue.

Although the Mets did win and spend money with the Wilpon family as owners throughout their ownership tenure, I am going to focus on the time period where they were strictly the sole owners of the team as times when they were not cheap. While they did have a few years where they were 50% owners, they were not majority owners and as a result, not all financial decisions were made with 100% of their control.

Despite most people's beliefs, the Wilpon family did have some moments where they were not cheap.

Even though the Wilpons have had the reputation of being cheap and not really making an attempt at putting a winning team on the field, there have been a handful of times where they did break out the checkbook in an attempt to put a winner on the field.

Now even though the Wilpons did never win when they were majority owners of the team, their handful of moves when they decided to spend was not necessarily the problem, as the times they did break the bank turned out to be pretty decent.

As previously stated we are strictly looking at money spent once the Wilpon family were majority owners, so post 2002. With that being said, let's look at five times the Wilpon family were not cheap.

Carlos Beltran Signs the Largest Mets Deal in Team History

Following his 2004 season where he put up career-high numbers in multiple different offensive categories, was awarded to his first career All-Star team, finished 12th in MVP voting, and had one of the most insane postseason stretches in Major League Baseball history, Carlos Beltran cashed in on a seven-year, $119 Million dollar contract with the Amazins.

At the time of the contract, this was the biggest deal in Mets history, and rightfully so. This was the first time the Wilpons spent some real money since they became the majority owners a few years prior.

Even though the Mets did not win following the monster contract they gave Beltran, it did work out pretty well. He was a five-time All-Star, three-time Gold Glove winner, two-time Silver Slugger winner, and had a fourth place finish in MVP voting one season.

Everyone loves to point out how he struck out in game seven of the NLCS in 2006 to end the Mets season, but you cannot have one single moment shadow over the rest of his accomplishments in New York. The Wilpons spent a large amount of money on Beltran and it worked out well as a whole.

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