GRIFFITH OFFERS TO BUY TWINS; TEAM UNLIKELY TO SELL TO HIM
Clark Griffith, the son of the Twins' former owner,
Calvin Griffith, said Friday that he'll make an $80M offer
to buy the team from Carl Pohlad and keep it in MN,
according to Jay Weiner of the Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE.
Griffith, who is aligned with "multimillionaire publisher"
Vance Opperman and St. Paul Saints Owner Mike Veeck, said
the offer will come before a special legislative session
tentatively set for the week of October 20 "to determine the
fate of a new Twins ballpark." Griffith: "I want the
Legislature to know that we're for real." But Twins
President Jerry Bell said that $80M would be "inadequate,"
and he "dismissed Griffith as 'a fringe player.'" Noting
that Pohlad has more than $100M invested in the team, Bell
said, "I'd say it's too little too late." Griffith said the
Twins are worth $80M in the Metrodome, where he, as an
owner, would keep the team until "people want a new
stadium." Griffith, on Pohlad's talks with NC businessman
Don Beaver: "Don needs someone who has a team whom he can
talk about having talked to. Carl needs leverage with his
Legislature. Don needs this to give him credibility for the
referendum he's involved with." Weiner reported that Twins
officials "have said the Pohlad family has no intention of
selling the team to Griffith, who has irritated them by
repeatedly stating he wants to buy the team, but never
delivering a serious offer" (STAR TRIBUNE, 9/20).
NOTES: Pohlad, on his talks with Beaver: "We have had
some very serious conversations with Charlotte, and we will
have some more on the telephone this weekend." On local
bidders: "Nobody has stepped to the plate. But we will talk
to anybody" (Sid Hartman, STAR TRIBUNE, 9/20). Beaver: "We
had some very serious discussions, though I'm not going to
violate their trust by talking about them" (Raleigh NEWS &
OBSERVER, 9/20)....A St. Paul PIONEER PRESS editorial on a
new Twins ballpark: "We can only repeat our view that the
honest way to fund a Twins stadium would be with a broad
metrowide tax that fairly distributes the burden of this
diffuse public benefit" (PIONEER PRESS, 9/21).