PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- The Mets are still "very optimistic" about hosting the 2013 All-Star Game at Citi Field, principal owner Fred Wilpon said Monday, though an announcement does not appear imminent.
Wilpon indicated that the team's outstanding $25 million emergency loan from Major League Baseball will not affect its ability to host the game.
"The loan has nothing to do with it," Wilpon said. "I think the holdup on the All-Star Game is conditions have changed for New York City and their finances, and what they can do and their negotiations. We're not part of those negotiations."
The Mets also hold a $40 million bridge loan from Bank of America, but expect to close soon on up to $240 million worth of minority ownership stakes. Wilpon and partner Saul Katz are scheduled to go to trial on March 19 against the trustee seeking to recover funds from Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme, with as much as $386 million at stake. A federal judge will decide on March 5 whether to proceed with the trial or throw out the case.
Word of the Mets hosting the 2013 All-Star Game first leaked in 2010, before resurfacing early last year. Though an announcement is usually made more than two years in advance, Major League Baseball has yet to make anything official for 2013.
The Royals will host the 2012 All-Star Game at Kaufman Stadium in Kansas City.
The Mets last hosted the All-Star Game in 1964, their first season at Shea Stadium. New York City has hosted the game eight times: once at Shea, once at Ebbets Field, twice at the Polo Grounds and four times at the old Yankee Stadium, most recently in 2008.