Could Bud Selig, MLB Take Control Of Mets Next?

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork / AP) — Commissioner Bud Selig is taking away control of the L.A. Dodgers from owner Frank McCourt, whose troubled finances have seemingly paralyzed the once-proud franchise.

Sound somewhat familiar?

Selig’s move might be seen by some as a precedent should the Mets have additional financial problems. With owners Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz under pressure from a lawsuit tied to the Bernard Madoff swindle, the Mets borrowed $25 million last year from Major League Baseball.

WCBS 880’s Paul Murnane: Mets Fans Are Talking

“I have taken this action because of my deep concerns regarding the finances and operations of the Dodgers and to protect the best interests of the club,” Selig said in a statement.

Some might say “Dodgers” could easily be replaced by “Mets.”

According to Forbes, the Mets lost 13 percent of their worth amid legal and debt problems. Listed by the publication at $858 million last year, the franchise is now valued at $747 million.

The New York Times also paints a bleak picture. The franchise lost nearly $50 million in 2010, the paper reported last month.

The Times cited two people briefed on the team’s finances. New York’s losses are projected to hit another $50 million or more this season based on several factors, including advance ticket sales.

Ex-Montreal Expos manager and Hall of Famer Frank Robinson told the New York Post in March that the Mets’ players will “hear it from the loudmouths in the stands” all season long. Robinson should know a thing or two about it — the Expos were under MLB’s control during his tenure.

“My players were jaded by the time I got there, because they had been hearing rumors about the team for a few years,” he told the paper. “For the Mets, it’s all new. It’s going to be a distraction.”

So the players might get razzed from the grandstands. But could the Wilpons “hear it” from Selig?

“The Dodgers have been one of the most prestigious franchises in all of sports,” read Selig’s statement, “and we owe it to their legion of loyal fans to ensure that this club is being operated properly now and will be guided appropriately in the future.”

However, unlike the McCourts, Wilpon is a longtime friend of Selig.

“(The Dodgers are) one of the great franchises. It’s hard to imagine a mess like this ever having happened,” former commissioner Fay Vincent said. “It’s a very sad situation. I feel very bad for baseball and for Bud.”

In February, Vincent sounded off on the Mets’ loan from MLB.

“Any time a team has to come to baseball for money, it’s a great concern,” he told the Post. “Other teams have to be worried. There are implications for everyone.”

The Mets’ embattled owners filed legal papers last month disputing a court trustee’s claim that they owe more than $1 billion because they should have known their investments with Bernard Madoff were fraudulent. In January, Wilpon and his son, Jeff, announced they were looking into selling a stake in the franchise because of “uncertainty” caused by the lawsuit.

Hedge fund billionaire Steven Cohen is said to be the front-runner for the Mets’ partial-purchase.

Should Major League Baseball step in and take control over the Mets? Sound off in the comments below…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • John

    I say sell the team to the Steinbrenner’s. They would know enough to send ALL of these amateurs back to the minors where they ALL belong,…including Wright and Reyes,…YEAH THAT’S RIGHT, I SAID IT!! Then they could have Cashman (who knows what he’s doing) bring up pro-level players so we can have some real rivalry and competitiveness in this great city! Instead of having one team in a league of their own and the other on par with the little league!! Met fans aren’t those who are for underdogs,…they’re more for wannabe’s!

  • anton

    crazy horse is as smart a a cement block…….the yankees are ny ???

    maybe your ny you brainwashed moron !!

    • CrazyHorse

      I see Susan Anton’s feelings were hurt on reading the truth. What an IDIOT!!!!

    • Crazyhorse

      Love hearing these Mets fans calling Mike on FAN & crying about the Mets, just like anton’s posting. Bunch of sissy crying babies. LOL, LOL

  • CrazyGeronimo

    Manuel, Randolph and now Collins have to obey the book. Why do they insist on scrificing Reyes to second. Let him steal the freakin base. Don’t give up an at bat by sacricing when you can steal the base.

  • CrazyGeronimo

    MLB will not take over the Mets. Reason is because Selig is friends with Wilpon and he isn’t friends with McCourt. Selig is a good ol’ boy. If the Wilpons continue to own the Mets, THIS TEAM, THIS CITY and MLB will suffer until the Wilpons will have to sell. Several years of minimal attendance will accomplish getting rid of the Wilpons.

    • CrazyHorse

      The city will never suffer & neither will MLB if the Wilpons continue to own the Mets, The Yankees are here, the Yankees are New York, the Yankees are MLB. The only people who will suffer are the few reminding Mets fans left out there; really, no one cares about the Mets.

      • CrazyMetsFan

        Call me crazy, but I care. I’ve been a Mets fan since I was a kid and would really like to see the team rise again. New York is a two-team town for every other major sport. There are enough people here to support two teams. Why not add the enjoyment of two competitive teams in the New York market for MLB? Without that, we might as well be Cleveland.

      • anton

        idiot !!

  • dabooch

    Bad marriages, bad investment schemes, a bad team and a bad economy are all to blame. If the Mets were a good team they could ride out the storm and trump the bad economy and the bad investment scheme Ala New York Yankee Billion dollar empire.

    The last time the Mets had a chance was in 2008, last game, I believe they were down two runs.. Reyes was on second, I believe Beltran was on first and I know Delgado was up…there were two out. I was yelling it is time for a double steal where a single would have tied the game at least…but nothing happened other then Delgado trying to hit a fruitless home run. That was it done.

  • Kurt Spitzner


blog comments powered by Disqus
Giving Tuesday
Charles Osgood Event

Listen Live