The Mets recently received a $40 million loan from Bank of America

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UPDATE: Via Andy Martino of the New York Daily News, the Mets have released the following statement:

“The bridge loan was approved by Major League Baseball and the syndicate of lenders to the Mets. The process for the sale of minority shares in the team continues to go very well.”

7:22 PM: Just in case the Mets’ offseason approach didn’t make it obvious enough already, the team’s owners remain hard up for cash.

According to Michael S. Schmidt and Richard Sandomir of the New York Times, the Wilpons and Saul Katz received a $40 million loan from Bank of America in the past six weeks. It’s being described as a “bridge loan” as they attempt to raise money through the sale of minority stakes. The Mets received a $25 million loan from MLB earlier this year, but have been unable to repay it.

People familiar with the team’s situation have said the owners had firm commitments from at least seven investors interested in buying a small share of the team for $20 million apiece. Still, until all are sold, none of the investors have had to turn over cash.

Vince Gennaro, a consultant to several major league teams, said that the $40 million loan “says to me that their finances continue to be tight, that there is a cash pinch.”

He added: “The team underperformed, and this tides them over until they get their money. They need cash flow.”

Now, Gennaro said, between the bridge loan and the $25 million owed to baseball, “the first $65 million has to go out the door” should the team sell an adequate number of shares in the team.

Two people with knowledge of the team’s finances told Schmidt and Sandomir that the Wilpons and Katz may have to consider selling the team if a full lineup of minority investors is not in place by next spring, though they have publicly expressed confidence on the matter.

Ian Kinsler lists the five toughest pitchers in the AL Central

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Every now and then, The Players’ Tribune runs a “five toughest” feature. In 2015, David Ortiz listed the five toughest pitchers he ever faced. Last month, Christian Yelich wrote up the five toughest pitchers in the NL East. Now, it’s Ian Kinsler‘s turn with the five toughest pitchers in the AL Central.

Kinsler goes into detail explaining why each pitcher is difficult to face, so hop over to The Players’ Tribune for his reasoning. His list

Presumably, Kinsler intentionally omitted his Tiger teammates from the list. He has faced Justin Verlander a fair amount earlier in his career, and he has only a .176/.333/.235 batting line in 42 plate appearances against the right-hander. Verlander’s stuff is often described as tough to hit in one phrase or another. Kinsler has also struggled against Indians starter Carlos Carrasco (.590 OPS), but one can understand why he would be omitted from a list of five given who was already listed.

Angels demote C.J. Cron to Triple-A

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Angels first baseman C.J. Cron hit a grand slam against the Mets on Sunday, but it wasn’t enough to keep his spot on the major league roster as the club announced his demotion to Triple-A Salt Lake on Monday. Infielder Nolan Fantana has been promoted from Salt Lake.

Cron, 27, was hitting a disappointing .232/.281/.305 with one home run and RBI in 90 plate appearances. I guess you can say that wasn’t the kind of Cron job the Angels were expecting. Cron was an above-average hitter in each of his first three seasons, finishing with an OPS+, or adjusted OPS, of 111, 106, and 115 (100 is average).

While Cron is figuring things out in the minors, Luis Valbuena, Jefry Marte, and Albert Pujols could each see some time at first base.