Reports indicate that some high-profile names are in the mix to purchase the Miami Marlins, including Yankee great Derek Jeter and former Florida governor and presidential candidate Jeb Bush.
Fox Business Network has reported that Jeter, the former Yankee captain, is seeking to buy the team and is being represented by former Morgan Stanley brokerage chief Gregory Fleming in his bid for the Marlins. As part of a separate effort, Bush is seeking to collaborate with Citigroup in order to purchase the team. (Besides being a former Florida governor, Jeb Bush is the brother of former President George W. Bush, once an owner of the Texas Rangers.)
It has not been a secret that Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria is shopping the franchise. Earlier this year, it was widely reported that Loria was in discussions with Joshua Kushner and Joseph Meyer about a possible sale, though several issues emerged–including whether Kusher and Meyer could raise the funds needed to buy the Marlins, and discussions about Loria possibly being appointed as U.S. ambassador to France by the Trump administration, which includes Joshua’s brother Jared. (More on that here.)
In response to the most recent report, Loria would not offer a comment on the supposed interest of Bush and Jeter. More from The Miami Herald:
Marlins officials would neither confirm nor deny the reports.
“I have no comment,” said Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria, who is in Washington to watch his team.
Bush has previously expressed interest in a role with the Marlins, as he was connected to a group of investors who sought to purchase the team in 2013. Jeter, meanwhile has had an active business career since retiring from the New York Yankees after the 2014 season, and has been said to have an interest in eventually owning a team. As Fox Business noted in its story, however, the respective efforts of Jeter and Bush will require additional investors, and it remains to be seen if either can reach the Marlins’ reported price tag:
Still, a sale of a baseball team needs approval from MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred, who is said to be against approving the sale to a bidder who needs to borrow significant sums of money to complete the purchase. One problem for Jeter and Bush is that despite their substantial net worth, they would need partners to finance the transaction, and financing from outside sources that the league might find problematic.
The Marlins may ultimately decide not to sell the team if they can’t get an offer close to $1.6 billion, people with knowledge of the matter say.
Fox Business also reports that a third group–which consists of several businessman–is in the mix, and that it has the financial backing of Goldman Sachs.