Former Yankees star Alex Rodriguez has emerged as a potential buyer for the New York Mets, reports Thornton McEnery of the New York Post. The Wilpon family is looking to sell the team after owning the Mets since 2002. They recently had an agreement in place to sell the team to hedge fund investor Steve Cohen while remaining in control of the club for another five years, . The Wilpons are now reportedly willing to sell the team without any such restrictions.
Rodriguez, 44, has been retired from baseball since 2016. Despite hitting 696 home runs; tallying 3,115 hits; and winning three MVPs and two Gold Gloves as a shortstop, he's considered a longshot for the Hall of Fame because of PED allegations and MLB went to great and even unseemly lengths to investigate Rodriguez, and that contentious relationship would seem to make it unlikely that A-Rod would ever be approved as part of any ownership group. However, Rodriguez has reconstructed his image quite successfully..
As well, A-Rod and fiancee Jennifer Lopez, while quite wealthy, would no doubt be minority investors given that the Mets' eventual sale price at auction could approach or even exceed $3 billion. The arrangement would likely be similar to Derek Jeter's with the Marlins, in which the former star shortstop is the public face of the ownership group while not being heavily invested in the monetary sense.
Rodriguez also has strong connections to New York, as he spent 12 of his 22 seasons as a player with the Yankees. Lopez is a Bronx native, and as McEnery notes A-Rod grew up a Mets fan. The Mets were also heavily rumored to be close to signing Rodriguez before he inked a $252 million contract with the Rangers prior to the 2001 season.
While the idea of A-Rod as an owner is tantalizing, especially in the same division as Jeter and the Marlins, it's perhaps a longshot, especially given that a revised bid from Cohen, who already owns a stake in the team, is a possibility.