The Miami Marlins are reportedly close to being sold, according to Scott Soshnick of Bloomberg, with the winning bid coming from a prospective ownership group led by Derek Jeter and Jeb Bush. Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald is reporting the winning bid was $1.3 billion, well over the $940 million estimate recently given by Forbes magazine, but short of the reported $1.6 billion “handshake deal” reported earlier.
MLB would still have to approve the deal with a vote from current owners. Bush would likely be the controlling owner, according to Jackson, with Jeter playing an “active role.” The last rumors regarding the Marlins’ potential sale had Jeter and Bush as rivals in the bidding, and it’s unclear if they were working together all along, or if they recently consolidated their efforts. Other reported bidders were Tagg Romney and Quogue Capital.
While Jeter made over $265 million as a baseball player, as well as millions from multiple endorsements, his role is likely to be as the public face of the ownership group, similar to Magic Johnson with the Dodgers.
The Marlins, while historically not the strongest draw in Major League Baseball, play in one of baseball’s biggest markets, and they were recently gifted a controversial new ballpark that was mostly financed with public money. While the organization has been as notable for their odd ownership situations as their on-field exploits, there is a foundation in place for long-term success.
Unless there are no surprises, then, get used to Jeb Bush and Derek Jeter in the ol’ teal and chartreuse. You are allowed to make one (1) gift basket joke, but only if you involve Jeffrey Loria in some capacity. You are allowed to make unlimited “Please clap” jokes, though.