At a time when the only deal Blue Jays fans want to hear about is the one that signs Josh Donaldson to the team for the next 10 to 15 years, Rogers Communications CFO Tony Staffieri announced that they may be looking to sell the team. The executive is in New York to feel out if there is any interest in purchasing the baseball team from the telecommunications company.
Staffieri said that they don’t yet have a perspective buyer and expressed that Rogers would like to continue to produce Blue Jays content — which they air exclusively on Sportsnet — just without the costs of actually running the team. Rogers purchased the Blue Jays in 2000 for $160 million and with the team’s recent success (well, admittedly, not this season) and the increase of ticket sales, they would be worth significantly more now. No word on what a sale would mean for ownership of the Roger’s Center.
So what does this mean for Blue Jays fans? Broadcasting shouldn’t be affected by new ownership, so Blue Jays Center will look the same as always (minus Gregg Zaun, of course). As for the team itself, there are mixed interpretations of what new ownership could mean.
On the one hand, some fans are rejoicing because they believe that owners have been stingy with players — not signing a deal with Edwin Encarnacion at the end of 2016 was a real sting. New management might be more willing to spend on getting and keeping the best players. That’s how the Yankees do it. But new owners don’t necessarily mean more affluent or indulgent owners.
A fan blog thinks new ownership could mean the exact opposite. Using former-player Derek Jeter’s purchase of the Miami Marlins this season as an example, they point out that a new team of execs might start by slashing costs to make a profit. That’s probably not what fans want.
Something they want even less than losing key players is losing the team entirely. It’s unlikely that the new owners will move the Blue Jays from Toronto — they have way too much support here to warrant that — but it’s certainly something that’s flitted across our minds.
Do you think Drake has enough money to buy the Jays? Asking for a friend.