MLB owners have unanimously approved the transfer of the Marlins’ ownership from Jeffrey Loria to a group headed by Derek Jeter and Bruce Sherman, with the deal expected to be officially closed on Monday. Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald first reported the news on Wednesday.
Loria released a statement on the team’s Twitter account Wednesday afternoon reflecting on his 16 seasons of ownership and wishing luck to Jeter and Sherman:
Statement from Jeffrey Loria: pic.twitter.com/r4Qho5DJ4J— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) September 27, 2017
It should be interesting to see the immediate changes that Jeter and Sherman have in store for the organization. As Jackson and Clark Spencer reported in the Herald late last week, Jeter—using team president David Samson, who will not be retained after this season, as an intermediary—has already fired four high-profile special assistants: Baseball Hall of Famers Andre Dawson and Tony Perez; former manager Jack McKeon, who led the Marlins to a World Series victory in 2003, and Jeff Conine, who played on the Marlins’ 1997 and 2003 World Series teams. It remains to be seen whether president of baseball operations Michael Hill and manager Don Mattingly are in the team’s long-term plans.
The new ownership group could also have a major effect on the franchise’s ability and willingness to spend money on players. Jackson reported earlier this month that Jeter and Sherman hope to reduce the team’s payroll (which currently sits at about $117 million) to a number somewhere in the range of $85 million if they keep Giancarlo Stanton, and as low as $55 million if they don’t trade him. If they trade Stanton and cut spending down to $55 million, their payroll would be by far the lowest in the majors—in fact, it’d be lower than the payrolls of every NFL and NBA team and more than two-thirds of the NHL’s teams.