J-Rod might not have the deepest pockets in the chase to buy the Mets, but their group has “more than enough money” to have a shot, according to one of its members.
Alex Rodriguez and Jennifer Lopez’s bid in the Mets sale includes investing $225 million to $300 million of their own money, The Athletic reported Monday, which would be the most of anybody in their group. For comparison, Derek Jeter contributed $25 million of his own cash in his group’s purchase of the Marlins.
That bid also involves Queens native Mike Repole and Florida Panthers owner Vincent Viola, and while the combined net worth of the four main actors is still less than Steve Cohen’s $14 billion, per Forbes, Repole doesn’t think they should be counted out.
“One hundred percent, we can be competitive,” Repole told The Athletic. “The entire group has more than enough money.”
Cohen’s first-round bid came in at $2 billion, The Post previously reported, while bids from the Rodriguez-Lopez group and the Harris-Blitzer group were also in that neighborhood.
A Sunday report from Fox Business said the sale was coming down to Cohen and Harris-Blitzer, with Rodriguez and Lopez not having enough cash to compete. But in addition to Repole’s claim that they have enough money, he believes their group is also the best option for other reasons.
“This is the best ownership group, not only for the Mets but for New York and definitely for baseball,” Repole told The Athletic. “I pride myself on being a marketer. Baseball needs a little bit of a marketing wake-up call, a marketing shot in the arm. Obviously with Alex and Jennifer and what I’ve done with brands all my life, if I’m among the 29 other baseball owners and I’m [Rob] Manfred, this is the team I want to own the New York Mets in the New York market.”
Repole also said the group’s New York roots — he is from Middle Village, Rodriguez is from Washington Heights, Lopez is from the Bronx and Viola is from Brooklyn — could help “bring New York City back” from the toll COVID-19 has taken on it.
A new ownership group would be subject to approval by MLB’s other owners, which isn’t necessarily a slam dunk for Rodriguez or Cohen given their history. But multiple ownership sources seemed to endorse A-Rod’s quest to buy the team.
“The second part of his life, A-Rod’s determined to make it just as interesting as the first part,” one ownership representative told The Athletic. “He’s done a great job of self-education and putting himself in position to even be a part of this process. I admire him for it. He would be a welcome addition.”
“He seems like a pretty sharp businessman,” a major-league owner told the website. “You have to imagine with his experience in the game and a good head for business, he might be able to bring some perspective maybe other ownership groups wouldn’t have.”