ORLANDO, Fla. — Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred says talks have ended over the proposed sale of a controlling share of the New York Mets from the families of Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz to hedge fund manager Steven Cohen.

The Mets said Dec. 4 the contemplated deal between Sterling Partners and Cohen would have allowed 83-year-old Fred Wilpon to remain as controlling owner and chief executive officer for five years. His son, Jeff, would remain as chief operating officer.

“There is not going to be a transaction,” Manfred said at the end of an owners’ meeting in Orlando, Florida. “I can tell you, and it’s based on conversations with the buyer and the seller on an ongoing basis, the assertion that the transaction fell apart because of something the Wilpons did is completely and utterly unfair.”

Cohen bought an 8 percent limited partnership stake in 2012 for $40 million. The deal under discussion would have seen him acquire an 80 percent controlling share in a transaction that values the team at $2.6 billion.

Wilpon repeatedly declined comment at the MLB meetings this week. After Manfred’s remarks, spokesmen for the Mets and Cohen declined comment.

Manfred would not speculate whether the deal could be resurrected.

Cohen first bought into the Mets in 2012 when the team sought $20 million minority investment stakes following the collapse of Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, which heavily cost the Wilpons and their companies. The limited partnership shares were sold after a proposed $200 million sale of a stake of the Mets to hedge fund manager David Einhorn fell through in 2011.

The 63-year-old Cohen is CEO and president of Point72 Asset Management.

FORMER ASTROS MANAGER AJ Hinch isn’t dismissing the idea that Houston’s 2017 World Series championship has been tainted by the sign-stealing scandal that cost him his job.

“It’s a fair question,” Hinch said in an interview with MLB Network. “And I think everyone’s going to have to draw their own conclusion.”

Hinch and GM Jeff Luhnow were suspended for one season by Commissioner Rob Manfred, who found Houston illicitly used electronics to steal signs during their title run. Team owner Jim Crane then fired both Hinch and Luhnow.

In an excerpt from an interview set to air Friday night, Hinch defended his players’ talents but said the clubhouse put itself in a position where its achievements may be blemished.

“I hope over time, it’s proven that it wasn’t,” he said. “But I understand the question. … Unfortunately, we opened that door.”

Manfred’s report noted the cheating was “player-driven” and that Hinch did not support it, but also said Hinch didn’t share that disapproval with players.

Hinch said he was unsure how much the sign stealing may have helped.

“Unfortunately, no one can really answer that question,” he said. “I can’t pinpoint what advantages or what happened or exactly what happened otherwise. But we did it to ourselves.”

Hinch apologized in a statement the day of his firing, but Astros players – given immunity and thus not punished as part of MLB’s investigation – have been reluctant to say they were sorry.

OWNERS’ MEETINGS: The dual roles of former Boston pitcher Pedro Martinez and ex-Olympic softball player Jessica Mendoza as team employees and broadcasters have drawn Manfred’s concern.

Martinez is a Red Sox special assistant and an analyst for TBS. Mendoza is a New York Mets baseball operations adviser and an ESPN broadcaster.

Both criticized pitcher Mike Fiers for revealing the Houston Astros’ sign-stealing scam to The Athletic. Fiers, now with Oakland, sparked an investigation that led to the departures of 10 percent of the major league managers: Houston’s AJ Hinch, Boston’s Alex Cora and the Mets’ Carlos Beltran.

Manfred concluded their comments were made in their roles as journalists.

“I’m not all that comfortable with it. I’m really not,” he said of their dual roles. “It’s a topic that remains under discussion internally. It caused a lot of complications, not just on this particular incident or comments, but in general.”

• Major League Baseball may alter its regulations on team owners and casino gambling in a manner that could impact the Ilitch family.

Marian Ilitch, the wife of late Detroit Tigers owner Mike Ilitch, owns Detroit’s MotorCity Casino. Her youngest son, Christopher, is controlling owner of the Tigers.

“The general rule will remain that if the club has an interest in a sportsbook, it can’t take bets on that club,” Manfred. “The rule does contemplate that there could be an exception provided that there are certain safeguards built in. The safeguards would essentially ensure that there is no controlled input whatever from the club to the betting operator, has to be a completely independent betting operator.”

DODGERS: Infielder Max Muncy and the Los Angeles Dodgers agreed to a $26 million, three-year contract and avoided salary arbitration.

Muncy gets a $4.5 million signing bonus, payable within 30 days of the deal’s approval by Major League Baseball, and salaries of $1 million this year, $7.5 million in 2021 and $11.5 million in 2022. The Dodgers have a $13 million option for 2023, when he could be eligible for free agency, with a $1.5 million buyout.

ARBITRATION: The Minnesota Twins beat pitcher Jose Berrios in salary arbitration giving teams a 2-0 record in hearings this year.

Berrios will be paid $4,025,000 rather than his request for $4.4 million. The decision was made by Frederic Horowitz, Andrew Strongin and Margaret Brogan, who heard the case a day earlier.

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