Jeb Bush is optimistic that he and Derek Jeter eventually will have a deal to buy the Miami Marlins, according to a report from Fox Business.
Bush, speaking Tuesday at the 20th annual Milken Institute Global Conference in Los Angeles, made his first public comments about the bid to buy the Marlins. According to Fox Business, Bush said he and Jeter have the support of the City of Miami and a group of investors. Daniel Kaplan of Sports Business Journal reported on Twitter Tuesday that the Bush-Jeter group has raised the necessary funds to buy the Marlins. The reported agreement for Bush, the former governor of Florida, and Jeter, the former Yankees shortstop, to buy the Marlins is $1.3 billion.
Fox Business reported that Bush said at the conference that Jeter would run day-to-day baseball operations and he would focus on the business side. Fox Business also reported that Bush wants to potentially expand the Marlins’ reach into Latin America, and his ownership group would prefer to “build the team patiently” rather than spending big on free agents.
Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said last week that reports were “premature” that the Bush-Jeter group had a tentative agreement to buy the Marlins.
“There are multiple bidders for the Marlins,” he said. “The Marlins are for sale. There is no agreement in place.”
Manfred added that an timeline for a decision would be “measured in days, not weeks.”
Former Yankees closer Mariano Rivera, appearing Tuesday at the BTG Charity Day event in New York, talked about his former teammate possibly owning the Marlins.
“I love it,” he said. “He always had that in mind. I mean, I hope that that happens, because he has a passion for the game. He loves the game. He wants to give back and this way, it’s also a business, but to give back. I hope that happens. I’m praying for that.”
Rivera said it won’t be strange to have Jeter involved with a team other than Yankees.
“No, that’s fine,” he said. “That’s fine with me. That’s baseball.”
Jeter was also at the BTG Charity Day event, but declined to discuss the situation with the Marlins when approached by reporters as he was leaving.