Kansas City based MLB team Kansas City Royals is set to play under new ownership.
The Royals announced on Friday that the owner David Glass has agreed to sell the club to a local businessman John Sherman, the team announced Friday afternoon.
The agreement cannot become official until approval by Major League Baseball owners, likely to come in November.
“Our goal, which I firmly believe we’ve achieved, was to have someone local who truly loved the game of baseball and who would be a great steward for this franchise going forward,” Glass said in a press release announcing the sale agreement. “John Sherman and his group far exceeded our hope for the next caretaker of Royals baseball. His love for Kansas City and the game of baseball is well documented as are his philanthropic endeavors in the surrounding communities. A native of this area, John has made a huge impact in our business community and is so passionate about baseball that he purchased an ownership stake in the Cleveland Indians three years ago to begin his relationship with this great game.”
Sherman, who owns minor stakes in another MLB club Indians since 2016, will have to give up those rights in order to own the Royals according to the league rules.
“I am enormously grateful to David and the Glass family for this extraordinary opportunity, and am humbled by the chance to team up with a distinguished group of local investors to carry forward and build on this rich Kansas City Royals legacy,” Sherman said in the release.
“Our goal will be threefold: to compete for a championship on behalf of our fans; to honor their passion, their experience and their unwavering commitment; and to carry their hopes and dreams forward in this great Kansas City region we all love — for decades to come.”
— Joel Goldberg (@goldbergkc) August 30, 2019
The sale was seen coming for while now, with multiple reports emerging. Earlier, Cliff Illig, the principal owner of Sporting Kansas City talked about Sherman’s love for the city and his intelligence as a businessman.
“I think he’s (Sherman) respected by other baseball owners, so I have to believe if he chooses to do something here in Kansas City, he would get a lot of support from baseball and the other owners,” Illig was quoted as saying by The Kansas City Star.
“I think the transition for someone like him would be a lot easier. He knows the organizational structures. He has a good handle on player transactions. He’s well-informed. And he’s one of those guys who rolls up his sleeves and figures it out.”
Asked about Sherman’s leadership style in the business world, Illig said, “My sense he’s a good delegator, but at the same time, he’s a guy who really likes to understand how things work. If he’s leading a group (interested in the Royals), he’s the kind of guy who would pour himself into it.”
Sherman would become the third owner of the Royals since its inception in 1961 taking over the club from Glass.
Dayton Moore, the Royals General Manager since 2006, talked about his departing owner in a heart-warming fashion.
“He owned a baseball team for all the right reasons,” Moore said. “He cared deeply about the fans. He’s an unbelievable competitor, somebody that’s taught me a lot and meant a lot to me and my family. It’s been special to journey with him through this process. My greatest memory in his team is watching him hoist that American League champions trophy right on this field and then a year later be able to raise that trophy in Citi Field in New York.”