The Mets may not be counting stacks of money "as high as some people expect," in general manager Sandy Alderson's words, but they do expect to increase their payroll heading into 2014.
Alderson said Tuesday that he expects the payroll to be higher than the $87 million that he calculated for last year's budget, though the GM stopped short of guessing how much higher.
"I don't think our payroll will be below what we saw last year," Alderson said. "As far as where it will finally land, let's defer that question until all precincts have reported."
The Mets currently have $25 million in guaranteed payments budgeted for two players: David Wright and Jon Niese. Tack on expected arbitration raises for several key players and regular salaries for a host of younger ones, and that still leaves the Mets with tens of millions of dollars to spend this winter.
The key will be allocating those funds toward a long list of needs. The Mets continue to search for at least one starting corner outfielder, at least one starting pitcher, a new starting shortstop and a few bullpen arms.
Read more: Sandy expects Mets' payroll to increase in '14 | mets.com: News