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Alderson Hints at Approximate 2012 Mets Payroll of $110 Million

$110 million.

That's the upper end of the range Sandy Alderson expects to allocate to cover the 2012 New York Mets payroll. Alderson spoke with reporters at Citi Field today following the end of the regular season about Jose Reyes, the payroll, the state of the organization, Madoff, and all the Mets that's fit to print.

After conceding that any Reyes negotiations would not move swiftly, Alderson reiterated previous comments he'd made in Buffalo that $110 million is where the money could end up ("I wouldn't say that $110 million is a cap.") though he doesn't foresee it dropping below $100 million, either. So you can bet the over if you like, but don't bet big.

Alderson was generally non-committal in his proclamations to the press corp this afternoon, playing his cards close to the vest since free agency won't open for at least another month. But he did concede that a new contract for Reyes could have detrimental effects on the rest of the roster.

From ESPN New York:

"If you look at where we are currently, with or without Jose we have a very small number of players and a large amount of money tied up in those players. Adding Jose would contribute to that same situation and create less flexibility for us than we would like to have. That's something we have to take into account. But there are plusses and minuses to every situation. We just have to weigh those."

Alderson expressed his frustration at the team's performance in 2011 ("One of the disappointments for me was that we started poorly and we ended poorly.") and didn't commit to guaranteed jobs for the team's trainers nor the coaching staff at this point. ("We want to make a decision on all of those staff decisions as quickly as possible," Alderson said. "But I'd rather not comment at this point. We may have some changes. We may not.") The Star-Ledger's Andy McCullough, who has the full transcript of Alderson's comments, also indicated a strong endorsement for Daniel Murphy and a tepid one for Angel Pagan.

Cue the radio silence from the Mets front office, though. If Reyes is the top priority, there won't be much news until at least Alderson's one-year anniversary at the helm of the Mets.