Is there a new owner in store for the Astros?
Drayton McLane, who has owned the Houston baseball team since 1993, reported Monday that he had entered into a 30-day exclusive negotiating window with an unnamed New York banking company. The Houston Chronicle has reported that the group includes Harvey Schiller, a former U.S. Olympic Committee chief and part of a group that was in talks to purchase the Texas Rangers. UPDATE: FOX 26 Sports is reporting the company in question is Great Court Capital of New York.
McLane says he is not actively trying to sell the team, but is willing to entertain offers if approached by a potential buyer. As he told ABC-13, any buyer would "have to show us they have the financial capability to do the deal and they have to show us the people, because we'd only do something if it were really highly reputable people and... there were a lot of Houston people that were involved in it."
McLane said he had a handshake deal with Jim Crane at the end of the 2008 season, but the deal didn't go through due to Crane's concerns when the economy crashed.
“We haven't put the team up for sale,” McLane said at a news conference on Monday. “We're not soliciting buyers. We're doing this for estate-planning purposes. But we've owned the Astros for 18 years and would be happy to plug along another 18 years.