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The Mets’ TV Partners Might Help Save Them

NEW YORK - OCTOBER 29:  (L - R) Saul Katz, CEO of the Mets, Fred Wilpon, president of the Mets, Sandy Alderson and Jeff Wilpon, chief operating officer of the Mets pose for a photo during Alderson's introduction as the general manager for the New York Mets on October 29, 2010 at Citi Field in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Saul Katz;Fred Wilpon;Sandy Alderson;Jeff Wilpon

I suppose this makes sense. Fred Wilpon, Saul Katz, and company have tried a variety of approaches to selling shares in the Mets and digging themselves out of deep debt. First, there was the whole David Einhorn thing, which fell apart, then the focus turned to dividing the franchise into smaller, more palatable (at least to exceedingly wealthy bros) chunks for folks to buy. It didn't quite go that way, either, as hedge-fund champ Steven A. Cohen was the lone investor to actually commit to a share (which he may want to sell eventually). Instead, Richard Sandomir of the Times reports, the Mets are looking to sell four shares to ... their own television network. Comcast and Time Warner Cable, it turns out, seem ready to pony up $80 million to finance SNY's purchase of a pretty hefty stake in the team.

The whole thing feels a bit like a dog chasing its tail. We'll let Craig Calcaterra try to explain:

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.

Somehow, one imagines, this ends with a guy in a suit shaking his OWN HAND, then taking money out of the bank, exiting, spinning on his heels, and immediately reentering to make a deposit (nose and glasses disguise optional). Anyway, as both the blog post above and the original article mention, it makes sense that the Mets' TV friends — who have a plainly vested interest in the team's fortunes — would be inclined to help pick the team up. The whole ordeal's just a bit dizzying, but I guess that's nothing new.

Photo: Andrew Burton/Getty Images