According to a report in the New York Post, the Mets will be looking to refinance “roughly $250 million in bank debt”.
This is no doubt referring to the large note that becomes due in June of 2014, that we’ve talked and heard so much about. But thanks to the great job by Sandy Alderson, the lenders are thrilled and after huge losses in 2011 and 2012, a source told the post that the Mets only expect to lose $10 million in 2013. That’s quite a difference from the $70 million the team lost in 2011.
The Post says that “even if the franchise hits a home run with its lenders and manages to pull off the deal without paying any principal, it won’t affect the budget for players’ salaries next season.”
Yesterday, Sandy Alderson and Jeff Wilpon declined to comment on the payroll budget, but during an interview on WFAN, the Mets GM said it will be under $74 million.
A source close the lending group views the refinance as a “decent loan” and team owners remain confident that with the value of the team rising, they will not need to pony up any cash during the refinancing.
The Mets maintain they now are worth $1 billion dollars, up nearly $400 million since early 2012.
Meanwhile, Sandy Alderson continues to trumpet that the Mets will be aggressive in free agency this Winter despite the revelation that payroll will be down from the $74 million level of 2013.
He told WFAN’s Mike Francesa that he has the wherewithal to seek out a $100 million dollar player, while still dropping payroll. But in the next breath he sounded like while he could break the bank on one player, he likely won’t.
“The money that we have to spend, we could spend a majority on one player, we could spread it around, there’s a variety of ways to do it,” Alderson said. ”You can’t go in to the season with three or four below-average positions. We can’t get by with multiple positions that way.”
“I think we’re gonna have enough money available to make significant improvements, no question about that,” he said. “We’re gonna be aggressive, play the market and see what’s there.”
I really don’t see the Mets spending more than $20 million this season especially with the team only $10 million away from having their first profitable season during the four-year Sandy Alderson era.
Right now, that’s more important and the bigger priority because it will validate Bud Selig’s confidence in Sandy when he picked him to be the GM who could save the team for the Wilpons. That has always been Sandy’s primary mission.