Report: Jeffrey Loria agrees to sell Marlins to group led by Derek Jeter for $1.2 billion

Derek Jeter’s group is reportedly close to becoming the official owners of the Marlins. (AP)

Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria has agreed to sell the team for $1.2 billion to a group led by New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter and New York businessman Bruce Sherman, the Miami Herald reported on Friday. Major League Baseball is expected to receive the written agreement on Friday.

According to the Miami Herald report, Jeter is believed to be contributing only $25 million of his own money. Sherman, who will reportedly assume a role similar to a managing general partner, and a group of 16 investors were called on to help bolster the group’s bid. The investors are reported to include NBA legends Michael Jordan, whose friendship with Jeter has been well documented.

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The sale would need approval from the league before becoming official. According to the Miami Herald report, a resolution may not come until October. MLB officials are expected to discuss the sale when owners meet in Chicago next week. A vote then is considered unlikely.

The Jeter/Sherman group edged out Miami businessman Jorge Mas and his contingent. The Mas group was considered a strong favorite as recently as the All-Star game, which took place in Miami and saw Mas sharing the owner’s box with Loria throughout the events.

As MLB Network’s Ken Rosenthal notes, once the deal is approved, Jeter will become the first African-American to run the business and baseball operations for a major-league club.

Oddly enough, it was Jeter’s desire to control both of those elements that ultimately led to his partnership with former Florida governor Jeb Bush falling apart. Some believed Bush’s departure would be a crippling blow to Jeter’s bid, but once Bush and new partner Wayne Rothbaum dropped out of the running this week Jeter’s group was able to rebuild its momentum and now seems poised to run the show on South Beach.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!