The Kansas City Royals have been owned by David Glass for nearly two decades. Glass made his initial fortune as a top executive with Walmart where he was gainfully employed for 24 years. After buying the team for $96 million back in 2000, Glass oversaw a resurgence in the the team’s performance which culminated in four winning seasons including the franchise’s second World Series Championship in 2015.
However, the team’s window for contention has clearly passed and the Royals are now firmly in the midst of a lengthy rebuild. At the age of 83, Glass is now reportedly in negotiations to sell the team.
Kansas City Royals owner David Glass is negotiating a sale of the team to local businessman John Sherman for more than $1 billion, sources tell ESPN. Sherman is currently a minority owner of the Cleveland Indians and would divest himself if Royals deal is finalized as expected.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) August 27, 2019
Glass’ tenure as owner has not been without controversy. Glass has been notoriously thrifty since his days at Walmart and many of his cost-cutting measures to maximize profit have been widely criticized around the league and some have openly thought that the team’s run of success was despite his ownership rather than caused by it. Moreover, Glass’ reputation with the media was permanently damaged when he revoked the press credentials of two radio hosts in the Kansas City area for asking critical questions during the introductory press conference for general manager Dayton Moore.
As for John Sherman, he already has connections to the city of Kansas City and is already an established presence in Major League Baseball as a minority owner of the Cleveland Indians. As Passan notes in his reporting, before any potential sale happens, Sherman will have to divest his stake in the Indians in accordance with MLB rules for ownership.
Based on the level of detail that is already out there, it seems likely that a sale is well on its way to happening. It will be interesting to see the direction that the franchise will go in both with its finances as well as personnel. The fate of Dayton Moore will be particularly interesting given his reported close relationship with the Glass family.