Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Mets Owner Fred Wilpon Was Inspiration For NBC Alternate Reality Drama "Awake"

NBC has a new show airing on Thursdays called Awake. The premise being that the main character can not tell whether he is asleep or awake.  He lives in two alternate realities since suffering a terrible accident.  In one his son is dead, in the other, he lost his wife. This much you may know. What you may not know is that the idea for this show came from the fact that Mets primary owner Fred Wilpon has the exact same situation going on.

Since suffering a terrible financial tragedy, he can’t tell whether he’s asleep or awake but only that he is part of two separate realities. 

In one of those realities – the one you and I are apparently also trapped in – he is a reviled owner, a laughingstock among his peers and his team’s fan base.  He has just settled out of court to avoid having to try to make the case that he and his partners had no idea that the fabulous profits they seemed to be making came from a Ponzi scheme.

His team is looking at a low attendance figure and will be lucky to play .500 ball.  He has instructed his GM to shave payroll.  And even with the $50 million reduction (a record, I understand) the team still figures to be deep in red ink.

But then Fred closes his eyes and all of a sudden he’s in that other reality:

In this world Fred is the universally loved owner of the greatest franchise in baseball. Citi Field is busting over with season ticket holders all anxious to come out to see a healthy and well constructed team.  A team that is the class of the NL East and always a contender to go all the way.

In this reality its fans are anxious to see how free agent signee Albert Pujols will fit in the already impressive Mets lineup.  The signing of the great Albert allowed Mets GM Sandy Alderson to package budding and inexpensive star Ike Davis and flashy young SS Ruben Tejada (plus a couple of prospects from the solid Mets’ farm system) for 24 year old Mat Latos.

The pundits are still buzzing about how Alderson was able to trade Carlos Beltran to San Fran for a top pitching prospect, Zack Wheeler, and then re-sign Beltran to a team friendly three-year deal.  Also re-upping with the Mets was the fan favorite Jose Reyes, the reigning NL batting champion.

In this reality the Yankees are a pitied disgrace.  Sadly their ownership was taken in by a scamp named Bernard Madoff.  Their new ballpark has been dissed as paying too much homage to the Cleveland Indians’ teams of the ‘50s and the fences so shallow as to make the game a farce.  The former Bronx Bombers will be lucky to play .500 ball in the AL East where all the other teams have improved while the team did next to nothing to make itself better – watching only its bottom line.

So if you see footage of Fred Wilpon asleep in the owners box this year you’ll understand why.  He is enjoying that other reality a heck of a lot more than he is enjoying this one.  I just want to know how we can join him there.

All articles featured on The Apple are fictitious. No Mets were harmed in the writing of this story. Story by Larry Smith. The Apple does not endorse any of Larry's ridiculous fictional free agent signings or trades.    You can follow Larry Smith on twitter @dr4sight   

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