SBD/22/Franchises

D.C. MINORITY INVESTOR GROUP LOOKING TO BUY PIRATES

     One of two DC-Northern VA groups seeking a MLB expansion
franchise was one of four interested parties to meet with the
Pirates' investment bank last week, according to this morning's
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE.  Robert Johnson, a Northern VA shopping
center developer and Donald Greene, a NY venture capitalist
reportedly have pledged a combined $40M to Capital Baseball,
which Capital Baseball President Bart Fisher now says includes
51% minority investors.   Fisher said he met with Wertheim
Schroeder officials last Thursday and "would give Pittsburgh a
chance to keep the Pirates if his group bought the team."  Fisher
"is pitching" Capital Baseball's minority investors as an
"attraction."  Recently, both Jerry Reinsdorf, a member of MLB's
ownership committee, and Acting Commissioner Bud Selig have said
they prefer prospective ownership groups with minority partners.
Capital Baseball is "running a distant second" to Virginia
Baseball Club Inc. in an effort to bring a MLB expansion team to
Northern VA.  For more on MLB expansion, (Steve Halvonik,
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 2/22).
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