It’s opening week for Major League Baseball and a multibillion-dollar bidding war could soon start over one of the worst franchises in the sport.
At least three possible bidders have emerged to purchase the Miami Marlins baseball team including one representing the country’s most prominent political family, and one representing a future Hall of Famer, the FOX Business Network has learned.
Former New York Yankees star shortstop Derek Jeter has expressed interest in bidding for the team, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter. He is being represented in talks with Marlins president David Samson by veteran Wall Street executive and former Morgan Stanley (MS) brokerage chief Gregory Fleming, who now runs his own investment banking boutique, the people say.
Another major contender is a group headed by former Florida Governor and one-time GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush, who is teaming up with Citigroup (C) to finance a possible official bid, these people add.
At least one other group is in the running for a possible bid, these people add. This group involves a number of businessmen who have gained financial backing from Goldman Sachs (GS), which has one of the best investment banking franchises with a focus on sports. The firm, for example, has served as an investment banker to the Yankees and its YES television network. Meanwhile, Goldman has partnered with the Yankees in a business that includes running stadium concessions for the Dallas Cowboys as well as at Yankee Stadium.
It’s unclear what role Morgan Stanley might play in a bidding war, or whether it might back the Jeter-Fleming bid.
Spokesmen for Jeter, Bush, Goldman, the Marlins and Citigroup didn’t return calls for comment.