Eighteen years ago, Drayton Mclane wrote a check for 103 million dollars to buy the Houston Astros, whom at the time were still playing in the Astrodome. Almost two decades later, McLane says the time is right move on.
“We can assure you, before we select a buyer, it will be an organization, individuals of very high standards, integrity, honesty and they want to do the same things: to be a champion and to get involved in the community.”
All negotiations regarding the sell will be handled by Steve Greenberg whose company has handled other purchases of professional teams. If you count the 200 million in debts, the Texas Rangers recently sold for 590 million. McLane was asked if he’ll be seeking that much for the Astros.
“We’re just going to see where the market is. If it’s not something that we’re pleased with, we’ll withdraw it. There’s no rush to do this. And so we haven’t set a price that we want. That’s something that working with Steve and our family that will emerge in the next few months.”
As fans know, the Astros haven’t been very good the past few years. Nick Hiran runs the Home Plate Bar and Grill across from Minute Maid Park. The success of his business is directly linked to the success of team, so it should be no surprise he’s all for positive changes.
“Absolutely, I think anything that’s happening at Minute Maid Park — whether it’s new players or new owner — I think will get more people coming out because most people are curious about what’s going on.”
Although he’s putting the team up for sale, McLane says he’s open to retaining part interest in the team. That decision will be up to the new owner. But whoever takes over, McLane believes will get a good product, despite the team’s record the past few seasons.
“We feel we really have the foundation of a young team moving forward. We have a minor league system that on the improvement. We’ve invested very heavily in the last three drafts or in young men that are in the Dominican Republic.”
Mclane bought the Astros for 103 million in 1992. The team is currently worth an estimated 453 million.