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What the Settlement Means…

If the Wilpons are still running this team for years to come and the Mets have been restored to some semblance of vitality because the organization is no longer distracted by an issue bigger than baseball, today’s settlement [1] of the case concerning their involvement in the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme before it could go to trial was a good thing. If the Wilpons eventually have to sell anyway in light of all the zeroes that continue to follow them around [2] and the Mets franchise is reinvigorated for the long term by new ownership, today’s settlement should be marked down as, at the very least, not a bad thing.

If the Mets continue to operate as if they’ve taken up residence in Kansas City because the Wilpons and all their presence implies are still here, then the settlement is lousy news. If the Wilpons still have to sell and the new buyers are worse owners than this crew has been — which is certainly a possibility despite the two bitter, barren periods (2002-2004, 2009-present) over which current ownership has presided in the past decade — then it’s not good.

That’s the least sophisticated analysis I can offer, perhaps the least sophisticated analysis you will read in the wake of the Wilpons apparently getting off cheap. At the risk of not taking into account whether justice was or wasn’t done, I’m going to take the provincial view and concentrate on whether this was good for the Mets…and by “the Mets,” I mean us, the Mets fans. Will we, when the current dust settles, have a team that year in, year out has a chance to compete and make us more proud than disgusted?

I don’t know. But that’s what will tell me if any good came out of this settlement today.