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Report: Time Warner, Comcast riding to the Mets’ rescue

Feb 3, 2012, 8:51 AM EDT

Image (1) Mets%20Logo.png for post 3903

The Mets have been casting about for investors for a long time now, and they’ve not had a ton of success yet.  Yesterday it was reported that one of the $20 million shares they’ve been peddling is going to hedge fund manager Steven Cohen.  Today we hear where more of those shares are going. From Richard Sandomir of the New York Times:

Time Warner Cable and Comcast are nearing a plan to finance SNY’s purchase of four shares in the Mets, worth $80 million, said one person with knowledge of the plan who was not authorized to speak publicly.

Kind of convoluted, in that Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz’ company — Sterling equities — owns SNY, and then, in turn, SNY will own a stake of the Mets. Time Warner and Comcast, in turn, own stakes in SNY.  Makes my head get all fuzzy thinking about it.

Ultimately, though, the idea seems to be that Time Warner and Comcast don’t want to see the regional sports network they own suffer, and by shooting money, somewhat indirectly, to the Mets, they’re shoring up their network’s programming. Which makes more sense to me than some random rich person giving the Wilpons money as some sort of vanity investment. At least there are stakes here for the cable companies.

Oh, and I suppose I should offer a two-part full disclosure here: (1) Comcast owns NBC and NBC pays me, so you know; and (2) if things go sideways for the Wilpons and Comcast does something nutty like take the Mets over completely, I promise that when I am installed as the team’s Lord Protector that I shall be tough but fair in my administration of its affairs.

  1. sdelmonte - Feb 3, 2012 at 9:03 AM

    1. You’d be a better GM than Omar. But I still want to keep Sandy. Please, please, please don’t trade him to Atlanta for a bag of peanuts.

    2. Speaking of Atlanta, some irony, given that Time Warner was, IIRC, technically the owner of the Braves after the merger with Turner. Never understood why Ted didn’t keep the team when he sold the media firm.

    3. It seems unlike that either Comcast or Time Warner would ever buy the Mets outright. But if there is one thing New York sports fans know, it’s that cable companies make lousy owners. I will take the Wilpons over the Dolans any day.

    • yankeesfanlen - Feb 3, 2012 at 11:52 AM

      Agreed, particularly about the Dolans with their Year of Infamy keeping the launch of YES from Cablevision

    • Dan in Katonah - Feb 3, 2012 at 5:00 PM

      Say what you will about the incompetent, moronic, ridiculously poor management hiring Dolans, at least they do not cheap out and run the team like some small market franchise because they pissed away their money in Ponzi schemes. The Wilpons are the only ones who can make the Dolans look better. If they did not have their collective heads up Selig’s ass they would be leaned on to sell like the McCourts. FREE THE METS!!!

  2. bigleagues - Feb 3, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    RELIEVE THE METS,
    RELIEVE THE METS,
    Step right up and bequeath the Mets!
    Bring your ‘kitty’,
    Forget our strife;
    Guaranteed to cost you for rest of your life!

    • aceshigh11 - Feb 3, 2012 at 12:04 PM

      HA. Nicely-done.

      • bigleagues - Feb 4, 2012 at 9:57 AM

        Thank you, sir!

        Now, as I have the towel from my shower wrapped around me, do I curtsy or bow?

  3. bigleagues - Feb 3, 2012 at 9:31 AM

    But seriously now . . . what’s $80mil among friends?

  4. Jonny 5 - Feb 3, 2012 at 9:47 AM

    So they just sold the 76ers and still own the Flyers. Ahh Why not buy a useless share of the Mets?

  5. leftywildcat - Feb 3, 2012 at 10:12 AM

    Craig, considering your bias and baiting tactics in HBT, wouldn’t being “tough but fair” imply that you are going to have to acquire an altogether new skill set?

    • paperlions - Feb 3, 2012 at 11:06 AM

      Hmmmmm. I am curious. Could you please link to commentary on HBT that was biased against the facts? I’m not saying Craig isn’t biased against the Mets….but I can’t recall any instances in which his opinion was at odds with the facts. In contrast, pretty much everything the Mets FO has said about their financial situation during the last 2 years has turned out to be untrue.

      • dondada10 - Feb 3, 2012 at 2:11 PM

        Die-Hard is the only way to describe my Mets fandom. With that being said–agreed.

  6. jwbiii - Feb 3, 2012 at 12:22 PM

    There must be more to this deal. If I were running Time Warner or Cablevision, I would want a way to turn this deal into owning a bigger piece of SNY. I wouldn’t really want to own a minority share of the Mets; I really would like to own more of SNY.

  7. owenpoin - Feb 3, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    If you can’t beat the ponzi scheme, become one.

  8. Old Gator - Feb 3, 2012 at 4:45 PM

    Kiner, Murphy and Calcaterra…..

  9. bbk1000 - Feb 4, 2012 at 6:25 AM

    I wish MLB would step in and do what they’re supposed to do in the best interest of the game…take over the team….it gets more embarrassing every day…

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