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AS PIRATES DEADLINE NEARS, MCCLATCHY LINES UP INVESTORS
Published September 22, 1995
Kevin McClatchy, the 32-year old heir to the McClatchy newspaper chain, is "expected to reveal today the three or four investors who may help him buy the Pirates," according to Steve Halvonik in today's PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE. That group could reportedly include Anthony J.F. O'Reilly, Chair of the H.J. Heinz Co. A Heinz spokesperson confirmed the two had talked, but was unsure whether an agreement had been reached. However, O'Reilly reportedly made a "personal commitment" of about $1M and also told McClatchy that Heinz might make a corporate pledge of $4-5M. Pirate ownership has given McClatchy an "exclusive option" to buy the team, which expires at midnight tonight. While O'Reilly's personal commitment is "modest, his name carries enough heft that it may be difficult for the Pirates' owners to reject any ownership group that includes him." An O'Reilly commitment could also buy McClatchy "a time extension." Liberty Media is also "weighing a financial investment," but that depends on MLB owners "who typically frown on media conglomerates taking ownership stakes in teams" (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 9/22). Investors in the McClatchy group include Dolphins QB/Pittsburgh native Dan Marino, and Chip Ganassi, who owns an IndyCar team with Joe Montana. Reports are that McClatchy is interested in adding Montana, who is also a native of Western PA (WASHINGTON POST, 9/22).