The Mets’ owners appear to be on the verge of finally putting the team’s financial problems behind them, The Post has learned. Cash-strapped Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz, who faced perhaps an insurmountable spring principal payment on their $250 million loan, are close to refinancing the note, sources said. “This will be oversubscribed,” a source considering investing in the Bank of America refinancing said. The re-fi — the biggest off-field hurdle the team faced this off-season — will likely close in February or March, the source said. Until recently, it wasn’t certain investors weren’t going to insist the team owners pay down some of the loan to get the refinancing done. Wilpon and Katz will not be asked for any cash paydown, sources said. Plus, interest payments are expected to stay about the same, a source with direct knowledge of the situation said. The rate will likely end up at Libor, plus 300 basis points, or a shade under 4 percent, a source said. The seven-year re-fi will give Wilpon and Katz much- desired financial breathing room, sources said. For the longtime friends and team owners, it is perhaps the best outcome they could have hoped for. For Mets fans hoping for new ownership to breathe new life — along with some power and pitching — into the line-up, perhaps the news is less thrilling. There is a bit of a silver-lining for critics of Wilpon and Katz: There are no payroll limits written into the re-worked loan, a source added. The existing loan restricts the team from greatly expanding payroll. For 2014, the Mets are expected to slightly increase payroll to more than $90 million from $85 million.
New loan could end Mets money problems
New York Post | Jan 31