ACKERLEY REPORTEDLY OUT AS INVESTOR IN THE MARLINS
The Ackerley Group "will not invest in the Marlins
because the Seattle-based company cannot have the control it
wants," according to Antonio Fins of the Ft. Lauderdale SUN-
SENTINEL. The end of the negotiations with Ackerley "raises
questions about how, or whether," Marlins President Don
Smiley will be able to buy the team. Ackerley CEO & Sonics
Owner Barry Ackerley said in a statement that he ended
negotiations because the "proposed deal was not consistent
with the Ackerley Group's investment criteria of having a
leading ownership position in all its investments and
acquisitions." Smiley had no comment (SUN-SENTINEL, 12/18).
POLITICAL EXPEDIENCY: In FL, David O'Brien writes that
Marlins Manager Jim Leyland has become "a more conspicuous
proponent of a publicly supported baseball stadium than he
was during the season." Leyland: "For some reason, people
act like [Marlins Owner] Wayne Huizenga should take South
Florida out to dinner every night. ... People have this
perception you're building [a stadium] for some $8 million
or $10 million ballplayer. That's absolutely not true.
You're building it for the area" (SUN-SENTINEL, 12/18).