J-Wilp: Payroll $145 million-plus

After participating with Mets pitchers R.A. Dickey, Mike Pelfrey, Bobby Parnell and Dillon Gee in firefighting training at the FDNY center on Randall's Island, chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon noted that the Mets will spend roughly $145 million on 2011 payroll in spite of the conservative winter.

"I don't think they realize the payrolll is up in the $145 [million] or better range," Wilpon said about casual observers. "I don't think people realize that. Unfortunately, we were somewhat hamstrung by what had happened before. Sandy [Alderson]'s plan was to go and deal with it this year and make sure we have tremendous flexibility next year."

Wilpon also applauded the front office's performance this offseason.

"I think Sandy and his staff have put together the best team we can to get on the field, and now it's time to get out there and prove that we're better than people think," Wilpon said.