Met Owners Eye Minority Stake Sale

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- New York Mets owners Fred and Jeff Wilpon are shopping a minority stake in the team as they look to "address the air of uncertainty," over their finances, according to a statement they released Friday.

The uncertainty relates to the Wilpons' connection to the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme. The Wilpons invested with Madoff and then withdrew $47.8 million more than their initial investment, according to a Bloomberg report citing a Dec. 7 lawsuit by Madoff trustee Irving Picard.

"To address the air of uncertainty created by this lawsuit, and to provide additional assurance that the New York Mets will continue to have the necessary resources to compete and win, we are looking at a number of potential options," read a statement from the Wilpons.

The Wilpons have hired Allen & Co. investment banker Steve Greenberg to shop the team. A call to Greenberg was not immediately returned.

Madoff trustee Picard has filed various lawsuits in an attempt to recover as much as he can for Madoff's victims. He won a $7.2 billion settlement Jan. 14 with the estate of Jeffrey Picower, a close friend of Madoff who died of a heart attack in October 2009, according to Reuters. He has also sued HSBC ( HBC) and JPMorgan Chase ( JPM), among other institutions. Picard has so far recovered about $10 billion for Madoff victims, roughly half the principal he says was lost during the scheme, according to a Jan. 14 Reuters report.

Congressman Gary Ackerman (D., N.Y.), whose district includes the Mets' Citi Field, sponsored legislation that would have prevented "clawbacks" from Madoff investors believed to have taken out more money than they invested with Madoff. An email to an Ackerman representative asking about the status of the bill was not immediately returned.

-- Written by Dan Freed in New York.

Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors, reporters and analysts from holding positions in any individual stocks.

More from Sports

What Is Tom Brady's Net Worth?

What Is Tom Brady's Net Worth?

NFL Pushes for Regulation Following Supreme Court's Sports Gambling Ruling

NFL Pushes for Regulation Following Supreme Court's Sports Gambling Ruling

Video: There Are Some Big Changes Coming to the PGA Championships in 2019

Video: There Are Some Big Changes Coming to the PGA Championships in 2019

Under Armour Shares Surge to 10-Month High

Under Armour Shares Surge to 10-Month High

It's Official, David Tepper Is the New Owner of the NFL's Carolina Panthers

It's Official, David Tepper Is the New Owner of the NFL's Carolina Panthers