NEW YORK — Billionaire hedge fund manager Steve Cohen has agreed to buy the New York Mets from the Wilpon and Katz families.

The team announced the agreement on Monday. The deal is subject to the approval of Major League Baseball owners.

Sportico reported Cohen will own 95% of the team, with the rest staying with the Wilpon and Katz families. The deal reportedly values the franchise at about $2.4 billion.

Former major league star Alex Rodriguez and fiancee Jennifer Lopez also attempted to buy the team, but they dropped out of the bidding last month.

“I am excited to have reached an agreement with the Wilpon and Katz families to purchase the New York Mets,” Cohen said in a statement.

Cohen also entered negotiations to buy the Mets last year, but the deal fell apart in February. He bought an 8% limited partnership stake in 2012 for $40 million. The deal that failed to close would have seen him acquire an 80% controlling share in a transaction that valued the team at $2.6 billion.

The current Mets ownership group is headed by Fred Wilpon, brother-in-law Saul Katz and Wilpon’s son Jeff, the team’s chief operating officer.

Cohen first bought into the Mets when the team sought $20 million minority investment stakes following the collapse of Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, which heavily cost the Wilpons and their companies. The limited partnership shares were sold after a proposed $200 million sale of a stake of the Mets to hedge fund manager David Einhorn fell through in 2011.

The 64-year-old Cohen is CEO and president of Point72 Asset Management.

ATHLETICS: Oakland signed former All-Star infielder Jake Lamb after he was designated for assignment last week by the Arizona Diamondbacks.

The move with Lamb made sense after Oakland lost Gold Glove third baseman Matt Chapman last week. Chapman suffered a strained right hip and is expected to undergo surgery.

The 29-year-old Lamb looked like a future star at third base just a few years ago. He hit 29 homers in 2016 and then made the NL All-Star team in 2017 while setting career-highs with 30 homers and 105 RBIs. Since then, he’s battled injuries and inconsistency and hit just 12 homers over the past three seasons.

He didn’t get much playing time for the Diamondbacks this season and had just five hits in 43 at-bats for a .116 average. He had a prorated salary of $2,042,593. After Lamb was released last week, Arizona GM Mike Hazen said he still believes in Lamb as a player but he needed at-bats that the Diamondbacks couldn’t provide.

The A’s cleared a spot on the 40-man roster by moving left-handed pitcher A.J. Puk to the 45-day injured list.

 


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