Derek Jeter has hit a snag in his bid to buy the Miami Marlins, according to a Fox Business report on Friday, and his group may have to pull out of the deal altogether.
Jeter, who is part of an investment group along with former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, may not be able to come up with necessary cash to satisfy Major League Baseball, which is concerned with the large amount of debt already owed by the Marlins, according to the report. Charles Gasparino of Fox Business tweeted Friday that Bush has been advised to pull out of the group altogether.
The Bush-Jeter group’s total bid for the team is a reported $1.34 billion and originally investors were expected to raise about $900 million of their bid in cash. But because of the Marlins’ dire situation, which includes an estimated $400 million in debt, MLB may require up to $500 million more than the original $900 million figure. The idea is to make sure that new ownership doesn’t take on a crushing amount of debt in addition to the significant figure already owed. Jeter and Bush were considered preferred buyers for the Marlins.
The Associated Press reported on Friday that MLB wants the groups bidding for the Marlins to show their cash up front to demonstrate the ability to close a deal and operate the team. The Associated Press also reported that a group including businessman Tagg Romney, the son of former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, appears to be in the lead to buy the team. Romney’s group reportedly includes Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Glavine.
Earlier this month, Bush, speaking at a conference in Los Angeles, said he was confident he and Jeter would be able to get the deal done, according to a Fox Business report. Bush also said that Jeter would be in charge of baseball operations, while he would focus on the business side, according to the report.
Jeter has not commented publicly on his group’s bid to buy the Marlins.