Mets Pick Ex-Glencore Duo Over SAC's Cohen

May 24 2011 | 12:42pm ET

Hedge fund managers appear to have struck out in their bid to buy a big piece of the New York Mets.

The troubled baseball team's financially troubled owners, Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz, have picked a pair of former Glencore International commodities traders as their preferred bidders for a minority stake in the team, the New York Post reports. That means, barring another negotiating error, SAC Capital Advisors chief Steven Cohen and the other hedgies who took the field will have to watch the perennial underachievers from their luxury suites at Citi Field, rather than the owners' suite.

The prospective new minority owners are not without alternative investment ties: Anthony Lanza, one of the two leaders of the group, founded private equity firm Carriage House Partners after leaving Glencore.

According to the Post, there remain some sticking points, including whether Lanza and former Glencore oil-trading chief Ray Bartoszek would get a piece of the Mets' television network, SportsNet New York. The two sides have been in advanced talks since last week, with Wilpon and Katz, facing a $1 billion lawsuit stemming from the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme, seeking $200 million for as much as 49% of the team, and a deal could come by the end of the month.

"They are pretty close to a deal," a source told the tabloid.

Of course, Cohen was reported to be close to a deal by the same newspaper. It is unclear why those talks failed.


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