Federal Bankruptcy Judge Rules That Creditors Have Right To Vote On Rangers' Pre-Packaged Bankruptcy Plan

With regards to the sale of the Texas Rangers, US bankruptcy judge Michael Lynn has ruled that the creditors have the right to vote on the pre-packaged bankruptcy plan devised by the Rangers to facilitate the sale to the Greenberg-Ryan group.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge D. Michael Lynn said in a written ruling that creditors and team owners were adversely affected by the Rangers’ plan to pay creditors $75 million and sell the club to a group led by Hall of Fame pitcher and team president Nolan Ryan and Pittsburgh attorney Chuck Greenberg.

The ruling allows the team and two groups of creditors to vote on the plan. Because creditors have said they would vote against it, the Rangers are expected to change the plan before a vote happens.

It's that last bit that's the key. The creditors have maintained all along that they disapprove of the pre-packaged plan, meaning their vote is a certain no. As such, in order to push this sale through, the Rangers will have to modify their plan before going on to a vote. At that point, with an approved plan, the Rangers could proceed absent lender acceptance.

It's unclear exactly what this means. On the one hand, Daniel Kaplan says the creditors were "elated" with the decision, but on the other, Maury Brown quotes Texas Rangers Baseball Partners as saying:

“We are pleased that the Judge remains committed to completing the sale of the Rangers expeditiously and we are confident that necessary changes to the plan can be made to achieve that outcome.”

The Dallas Observer suggests that that changes that have to be made to the plan are relatively simple and straightforward, and that this isn't actually much of a setback. Still, what it does do is make the Rangers far less active in trade talks. Tweets Buster Olney:

1 club exec said: "The Rangers can forget about Roy Oswalt, and maybe just about any other major player."

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