Yesterday, Erin Arvedlund, author of the book “Too Good To Be True”, appeared on FOX Business News and faced off against Mets VP of Business Operations, Dave Howard.
Howard vehemently denied some of the charges that Arvedlund made in her book which claims that the Wilpons lost $700 million in the Madoff Ponzi scheme, and that it will force them to sell all or a part of the Mets.
To watch the full video, check it out here courtesy of Brian Costa.
The author claims that her source was a Mets front office employee who has been with the Mets for two decades, a claim that Howard called “bogus and untrue”.
Howard made it absolutely clear (with no wiggle room) that the Mets are not for sale now and will not be in the future.
“The Mets are a family owned team that will remain that way for a long, long time.It’s a passionate long-term investment. There’s no need to sell. There’s no reason to sell. There will be no sale and I can’t state it any more definitively than that.”
I believe him, and I must say that the author seemed unwilling to defend her book and her claims when she had the chance. All she kept saying was,
“It’s my opinion based on my research.”
Howard went completely ballistic on her at times calling her claims “outrageous, unfounded and grossly irresponsible.” He also added,
“The figures she’s thrown out are inaccurate and substantially overstated. The losses incurred from the Madoff fraud have not and will not affect the operation of the Mets.”
Dan Duquette, also appeared on the show and stepped back from comments he made on his Sirius Radio Show that the Mets shutdown their fall instructional league due to cost-cutting measures. He said that when he levied that charge he was unaware that the Mets had shifted that operation to the Dominican Republic so that they could compete against many other teams that had academies in that area. I actually ran with the original story and inaccurately made the same assumption as Duquette. I apologize to the Mets and retract my statements.
It is my belief that the Mets could make things so much easier if they simply communicated the extent of their losses so that these charges and assumptions would simply go away. They have a right to keep that information to themselves, but I feel that if they just came clean on this, the truth will supersede all the speculation that is running rampant out there.
As a privately owned company, the Mets are not subject to the same disclosure rules that public companies have to abide by, but in this case it would certainly do more good than harm. The Mets keep saying we didn’t lose $700 million, and if so then great. Come out and say it was only $400 million, or whatever it is, and lets move on already. We have been dealing with this issue for nine months already. It’s not simply going to rise up and walk away.
Anyway, I still see some evidence of financial woes in their actions, and until I see otherwise I will continue to believe there are tough and lean times ahead.
I do believe that despite the $30 million dollars in savings from the departures of Delgado, Putz, Wagner, etc., that the Mets will slash payroll from $145 million to $120-125 million. Prove me wrong…
And as the author said in the final words of her interview, “Only time will tell.”