New York Mets Climb to the Mountaintop of Bad Marketing

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"They basically turned a win-win into a lose-lose all thanks to the emotion of fear."


That basically is a summarization of the NY Mets since there involvement in the Madoff scheme was made public a few years ago. Once you think things are looking up, you lower your expectations, & thins can't get any worse... it does.

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Heh, with all the arguments about rational vs. emotional, it's amusing to see that the Mets management were clearly making an emotional instead of rational decision in even calling him to threaten the clause.

Here's their emotional argument:  "Oh noes! He might get hurt and then we might not win too games! I'm scared!"

Here's the rational counter-argument:  "He's risking his neck for the sake of charity.  Give him full support -- if he gets hurt and fails, we'll forgive the discretion, donate a chunk to his charity and make a killing in 'This man is a tragic hero, support the Mets' type merchandise.  If he succeeds, we'll donate a chunk of change to his charity, selling 'This man is a hero, the Mets are awesome' merchandise and probably still win games"

They basically turned a win-win into a lose-lose all thanks to the emotion of fear.

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Ryck & Mitch, no arguement there. Timing is everything. I totally agree that it was mishandled.

Mitch Wagner
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Ryck -  I firmly believe that they made this a public issue to garner fan support, but it backfired, and now they are trying to clean up the mess.

That's my read as well. 

There is a tendency on the part of peopel who are powerful in one area to think that power is more universal than it actually is. 

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@AliceAMM - I understand your point, but if the restricted activity clause is part of Dickey's agreement does identify mountain climing as an activity not to be undertaken, the Mets' recourse is to void the contract.  As Dickey returned from this excursion unscathed, one would have to also look at the potential of a possible, career-ending injury may occur.  He could have his career shortened by an accident at home.  There have been cases where athletes have cut themselves with knives, but I don't see them banning the use of sharp utensils.  Some common sense needs to be used, and I don't think the Mets demonstrated any.  I firmly believe that they made this a public issue to garner fan support, but it backfired, and now they are trying to clean up the mess.

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Seems like this is a good example of once something is out there it's out there with a life of its own.

It makes total sense to me that they wouldn't want to jeopardize his million dollar arm. On a smaller scale, my daughter is a scolarship athlete at a D1 school and she's not allowed to ice skate, ski or otherwise engage in other activities that could endanger her ability to play the sport she's getting an education to play. She's not a professional yet she understands that limitatation and accepts it as part of the package. Why wouldn't a professional team who has so much more at stake have the same requirement?

If Dickey really wants to help this cause, then he can and should do so. However, there are ways to do it that wouldn't jeopardize his teammates, the organization and the fans. It's the price of being a professional athlete. Come on. Athletes get paid way more than anyone should to play. He knew when he agreed to do this that he shouldn't.

Did the Mets handle it well, hindsight says no.  But neither did Dickey.

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Although we don't know exactly what the Mets were thinking by taking this public.  If I had to guess, I would think they were trying to get fan support to prevent Dickey, a key member of the Mets franchise, from doing something that potentially may affect his ability to help the Mets win games.  Unfortunately, this happened out-of-season, and more importantly, what he wanted to do was a very charitable act, one that probably tugged at the heart strings of many Mets fans.  If this was the Mets rationale, they completely underestimated the humanity within their fan base.

John Barnes
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The standard MLB contract does carry a "if you do something voluntarily that results in an accident" escape clause for the team, and that's what the Mets were threatening to invoke.  Dickey said they did call him privately and simply ordered him not to do it; then they made the threats publicly.  That strikes me as another example of the Mets organization being completely clueless; if you're going to threaten, that strikes me as something to be done quietly and ideally deniably.

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I agree with Infinity and Ryck. It's beyond me why the management's reaction was made public. I doubt that they would intentionally do so, just so they can get a lot of publicity and turn things around even at their expense. It would be interesting to see what course of action they'll be taking from here on for damage control.

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@ryck -- exactly -- most companies would keep something that doesn't look favorably upon them completely under wraps. 

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