SBD/May 13, 2011/Franchises

Selig Maintains Mets On Track To Select New Minority Partner This Month

Fred Wilpon (r) confident family can maintain majority control of Mets
MLB Commissioner Bud Selig on Thursday said that Mets Owners Fred and Jeff Wilpon and Saul Katz "are on track to select a buyer for a minority stake in the team by the end of the month," according to Michael O'Keeffe of the N.Y. DAILY NEWS. Selig, speaking at the conclusion of the MLB owners' meetings, said that he remains confident Fred Wilpon and his partners "will be able to solve their financial woes by selling a minority interest in the club." Selig declined comment when asked if he "was concerned that Steve Cohen, the billionaire hedge fund manager who sources say is the leading contender for the share in the Mets, could be dragged into a federal investigation into insider trading." Sources "disputed reports that claimed Cohen has pulled out of the bidding for the Mets." Selig said that Wilpon and Allen & Co. Managing Dir Steve Greenberg, hired by the Mets to assist with the sale, "have not yet identified a final candidate." Selig: "Steve Greenberg keeps me very well-informed. He's very confident of moving ahead to a very satisfying conclusion" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 5/13). Fred Wilpon Thursday said that he is "convinced that his family will maintain a majority share of the team." He said the team's search for a minority partner should be completed in "the next couple of months." Asked if he was confident about maintaining control of the Mets, Wilpon said, "Oh, very" (NEWSDAY, 5/13). In N.Y., Dan Martin notes when "pressuring the money-losing Mets in November to find a buyer for a minority stake in the team, the commissioner had set the owners meetings as the benchmark to name a buyer." Still, Selig Thursday said, "I think they're moving forward to a very satisfactory conclusion" (N.Y. POST, 5/13).
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