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Hello, Bernie

Posted By Howard Megdal On July 18, 2012 @ 10:38 am In Business of Baseball,Today's Mets headlines | Comments Disabled

Hey, remember when the Mets put their financial problems behind them forever [1] with the settlement of their lawsuit with the trustee for the Bernie Madoff victims?

Yeah, it didn’t make much sense then, given that the reason they managed such a deal was by proving to the trustee that they needed a hardship settlement [2]. And that their minority ownership shares essentially paid some psat-due debts, and was enough to pay interest on their remaining loans through the end of 2012, while leaving nearly all of the principal of those loans intact.

But it made for some lovely storylines, and the repeated talking point, that the Madoff mess was behind this team forever [3]. Blue skies ahead. Nothing to see here.

So it seems odd that the Mets need a reliever-holy cow, do they need a reliever-and a backup catcher. Sandy Alderson doesn’t want to give up young talent [4], and why would he? Any other team in that situation would look to add salary instead, especially one that fundamentally transformed their financial situation by settling the Madoff lawsuit and getting minority ownership stakes sold.

After all, that took care of the financial issues, and the Mets’ owners weren’t dependent on Bernie Madoff’s cash flow to afford to compete, right?

Well. Francisco Rodriguez is available, on precisely the kind of deal the Mets made to trade him last year. Huston Street is available. Both aren’t signed beyond this year (Street has a buyout).

But they both are “too pricey” for the Mets. [5] So is Ramon Hernandez, who could provide an upgrade at catcher simply by the Mets assuming his salary.

Just remember this the next time you hear someone discuss the Madoff lawsuit settlement and minority ownership sales as some kind of demarcation point. It wasn’t. It staved off immediate bankruptcy. But your New York Mets are still paying the price for Fred Wilpon investing with Bernie Madoff, and that’s unlikely to change anytime soon.

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URL to article: http://mets.lohudblogs.com/2012/07/18/hello-bernie/

URLs in this post:

[1] put their financial problems behind them forever: http://articles.nydailynews.com/2012-03-19/news/31212042_1_wilpon-and-katz-madoff-trustee-mets-owners

[2] proving to the trustee that they needed a hardship settlement: http://www.capitalnewyork.com/article/sports/2012/04/5706434/madoff-victim-trustee-says-he-lost-interest-pursuing-mets-owners-beca

[3] that the Madoff mess was behind this team forever: http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/blog/jon-heyman/19196433/mets-plan-contract-offer-to-wright-sometime-this-season-gm-alderson-confirms

[4] doesn’t want to give up young talent: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/18/sports/baseball/sandy-alderson-keep-mets-focused-on-future.html?ref=baseball

[5] But they both are “too pricey” for the Mets.: http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/blog/jon-heyman/19603936/mets-seek-pen-help-but-view-krod-and-huston-street-as-too-pricey

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