Entrepreneurs Alan Miller and Super Bowl XLVIII Champion Jon Ryan, both owners of COLLiDE Sport and the Pickles, will join as majority owners. Financial terms of the sale were not disclosed.
The Captains will celebrate their 20th season in Lake County this April. The new ownership group, COLLiDE NEO, has plans to make significant investments in the team’s growth.
“We are thrilled to partner with the Cleveland Guardians organization to bring our passion for baseball and fun to Northeast Ohio,” said Miller, co-owner of the Lake County Captains, Portland Pickles and COLLiDE, via press release. “We are grateful to Peter and & Rita Carfagna for the opportunity to take the reins on this organization and continue their commitment to Lake County.”
“The Cleveland Guardians organization is very excited to partner with Alan and Jon from COLLiDE Sport on their new venture in owning our high-A affiliate in Lake County,” said Cleveland Guardians Owner/Chairman/CEO Paul Dolan via press release. “We are very fortunate to have Lake County in close proximity from a player development standpoint and know their wealth of expertise in professional baseball will only enhance the experience for our players and Captains/Guardians fans.”
The new owners announced changes for the 2023 season including live broadcasts of all home games, new food and beverage menus, and a new left field fun zone featuring a nine-hole mini golf course. In addition to these events, the group is also dedicated to growing its community reinvestment programs.
Former majority owner and Chairman Peter Carfagna will stay on as a minority shareholder in the new ownership group. “Our family is thankful to the City of Eastlake for welcoming us and Minor League Baseball into the community nearly 20 years ago,” Carfagna said via press release. “We have loved every minute of celebrating local heroes, youth sports teams, partnerships, championships and everything in between. We have enjoyed the handshakes and smiles from over five million Ffans at Classic Park, our summer home. Our family has appreciated the support from our staff, partners and fans for nearly two decades and we look forward to continuing those relationships in a minority role.”
Northeast Ohio natives Peter and Rita Carfagna, along with Ray and Katie Murphy, purchased the Columbus Georgia Redstixx and moved the franchise to Eastlake in 2003 with the partnership of Dolan Eastlake Baseball.