NEW YORK (WFAN) – Fred Wilpon’s “lousy club” could lose up to $70 million this year, according to a second headline-grabbing profile of the Mets’ embattled owner to surface this week.
The New York Daily News reports that Wilpon, already under the microscope for sharply criticizing Jose Reyes, David Wright and Carlos Beltran, told Sports Illustrated that the club is “bleeding cash.”
The story will appear in this week’s magazine.
Though he didn’t identify any bidders, Wilpon also told SI that he could have an agreement to sell a partial stake in the franchise within three weeks. One of the leading contenders has reportedly not yet been mentioned by the media.
Wilpon also said he’d be willing to discuss a settlement for $295 million in what Irving Picard, the trustee for the victims of Bernard Madoff, calls fictitious profits — but not the $700 million in principal invested years before Madoff’s arrest.
“Gov. (Mario) Cuomo has not been able to at this stage convince them that the 700 is not going to be obtainable,” he said.
Wilpon said if Picard’s lawsuit is successful, it could cost him full ownership of the Mets.
A profile of the owner in The New Yorker created a firestorm on Monday. In the article by Jeffrey Toobin, Wilpon called Wright “not a superstar,” said Reyes “won’t get” a Carl Crawford-type contract and pronounced Beltran to be “sixty-five to seventy percent of what he was.”
He also called the Mets a “lousy club” and a “sh–ty team” in the piece, adding, “we’re snakebitten, baby.”
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