The Miami Marlins have reportedly agreed in principle to sell the team to a group headed by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter for $1.3 billion dollars. Yes, it's finally happening. If the reports are accurate, Jeffrey Loria and his moustache-twirling henchmen will soon be out of our lives.
The new ownership group is ready to pay a pretty penny for the Marlins — more than most people, including experts at Forbes, consider the team to be worth. So perhaps they want to sell off a few percent to some minority owners to recoup a little bit of their investment. May we suggest a few locals we hope Jeter and Bush would give first
Here are five Miami-based people that should own a least a tiny piece of the Marlins.
5. Dwayne Johnson
The Rock doesn't have buy-an-MLB-team money, but the highest-paid actor in Hollywood certainly can purchase a piece of a lowest-tier team. This one isn't about the day-to-day operations of the Marlins, it's about entertainment. Jeter and Bush can worry about hiring and firing. Johnson can entertain us.
Johnson would bring an element to a potential Marlins ownership team that it hasn't had since Loria took over in 2003: likability. Everyone likes Dwayne Johnson. Stephen Ross tried to bring Hollywood owners to the Dolphins but in a one-percent, token kind of way. If Dwayne Johnson bought up an actual stake in the Marlins and put in the face time, Marlins games would be a much more fun place to be.
No one is more Miami than Pitbull. If Miami suddenly jumped up off the map and started dancing, it would probably act exactly like Pitbull. He's Cuban-American, a community where baseball is huge. Both those facts alone should approve any request Mr.305 puts in to buy a small bit of the Marlins. Whenever something huge happens with the Marlins, Pitbull is already there anyway, so why not just throw the guy a one-percent stake in the team and let him hang around more often? Jeter and Pitbull seem like they could be friends. Did we just make that up? Probably, but there is no reason Pitt and Jeter can't throw the dopest post-game parties in the Clevelander after the game.
3. DJ Khaled
Of course DJ Khaled has to be on this list. Baseball is facing a generational problem. The average younger sports fan thinks of a baseball game as the last sport they want to see live. By far, the oldest crowds you see are at a baseball game, and for good reason — the sport has done little to market itself to young fans since the '90s. DJ Khaled does not have a marketing problem. Quite the opposite, actually. And Khaled already attends Heat games like a true fan, not someone there for a bandwagon championship ride. Imagine if the Marlins could get Khaled to care about baseball, attend games, and send out the Marlins Park experience to his millions of social media followers? That in itself would be worth selling off a couple percent of the team at a discounted price. Give Khaled a piece of the Marlins, Jeb. Don't play yourself.
2. Chris Bosh
If there are two things we know about Chris Bosh, it's that he's got time on his hands and plenty of money. Bosh has made it clear he has no intention to coach, but he hasn't mentioned anything about sports ownership. While owning an NBA team would be the most logical fit, Bosh is just the sort of guy we could see diving into a new sport just to see if he could swing it. Hell, Bosh picked up Spanish and started playing guitar after moving to Miami. Why not take an interest in baseball? For the considerable chunk of the money he's currently getting to not play basketball, Bosh could make a wise investment that will undoubtedly quadruple in a decade or so.
If there is one more thing we know about Bosh, it's that he's smart. Investing in a sports franchise is good business. Bosh would be smart to jump on board in a limited role in a city that still absolutely adores him.
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1. Gloria Estefan
Gloria Estefan is the queen of Miami. She and her husband Emilio are Miami royalty. It just feels right that they should be included in the Marlins ownership. The Estefans have brought a bit of class to Miami for a long time, so if the Marlins are looking for a local couple to bring along for the ride, we couldn't suggest a better pair. What could be more 305 than required Miami Sound Machine songs after home runs? That screams Dade County much more than that hideous sculpture on acid does, at least.