It used to be that the Mets were one of the financial powerhouses in baseball. When the Twins didn't think they could afford Johan Santana, the Mets relieved them of that burden. When the Marlins didn't think they could keep Carlos Delgado, the Mets were there. Both the Marlins and Twins should have larger team payrolls than the Mets in 2012.
But while the supposed perks of a non-controlled stake in the Mets were initially amusing, it turns out that they're progressing nicely with the sale of them. From Newsday:
The Mets expect to sell 10 minority shares of the team by the end of February, a person familiar with the process said Monday. The units, priced at $20 million each, would raise $200 million for the cash-strapped franchise and be used to pay existing loans and operating expenses for 2012.
Whatever the perks are, there isn't a shortage of rich folks looking to own a chunk of the Mets. They'll almost certainly get back to fiscal health, but it will probably take a while. This sale is the first step.