Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter once shared one side of the infield in the AL East when they were teammates on the Yankees. Could they soon be sharing pieces of the NL East, both as team owners?
Rodriguez and his fiancee, singer/actress Jennifer Lopez, are interested in buying the New York Mets, according to a report from Variety on Monday. The couple has reportedly retained JPMorgan Chase in order to help raise money in an effort to make a bid for the Mets.
The team has been in a state of limbo since the Wilpon family, which currently owns the Mets, said they were looking to sell a majority share of the team in December. The Wilpons nearly struck a deal with billionaire hedge fund manager Steve Cohen that would have given Cohen 80 percent of the team while letting the Wilpons maintain control of the club for five years, but that deal fell apart and has left the Wilpon family looking for new prospective buyers.
In the proposed deal with Cohen, the Mets were valued at $2.6 billion. The combined net worth of Rodriguez and Lopez sits around $700 million.
Rodriguez could be trying to follow in the footsteps of Jeter, who became a minority owner of the Miami Marlins when he led an ownership group that successfully purchased the team in 2017. Jeter contributed only $25 million to the $1.2 billion sale (equating to a 4 percent ownership stake) but has been at the forefront of the organization since the team changed hands. Jeter currently acts as CEO and runs baseball operations.
A-Rod and Lopez running the Mets would be something of a strange idea considering Rodriguez is closely aligned with the Yankees, who he played for and has worked with during his post-playing career. Meanwhile, Lopez grew up in the Bronx, home of the Yanks.
But it's unlikely that the Yankees will be available for sale anytime soon and the couple would need to raise even more capital in order to make that bid, so they could be eyeing the Mets opportunity as the next-best thing.