While neither Jeb Bush or Derek Jeter have pulled out of the running to purchase the Miami Marlins, the two have sought financial guidance in making the deal happen.
It was reported this week neither of the two potential owners of the team have the finances to make the deal work. There has been some talk Jeter or Bush, or both, may back away from buying the team from current owner Jeffrey Loria.
Per a story by the Associated Press that appears on ESPN.com, Bush says he is optimistic he can close a deal to buy the Miami Marlins, with his partner Derek Jeter taking charge of baseball operations.
"Given the interest we have inside Miami and among people that are potential partners, I'm really excited about it," Bush said, speaking publicly for the first time about his efforts to purchase the team from Jeffrey Loria. "It's a sport that has huge potential in Miami. I'm excited about the community aspects of this."
Bush, the former Governor of Florida, made a pitch to buy the team in 2013. His brother, George W. Bush, was an owner of the Texas Rangers prior to becoming the 43rd President of the United States.
MSN.com is reporting that Citigroup is advising the group led by both men to purchase the team. Jeter and Bush won an auction last week to make a $1.3 billion offer to Loria for sale.
There are reports from MLB that there is another group looking to make a purchase offer as well.
Bush has been optimistic about getting the deal done and raising the money needed to make this happen. He is also excited about working with Jeter in this business deal. The two were once on opposing sides competing for the franchise.
"Derek Jeter is a phenomenal guy, a person of incredible integrity," Bush said. "I get to meet famous people all the time, and sometimes they don't match up to what their reputation is. Jeter is the exact opposite. He has this incredible, impeccable reputation he earned, and in person he's maybe even better. He's humble, really smart and totally focused on this.
"We have had to make some tough decisions that would require a little conflict. He has made them in a way that has made me feel really good to be his partner, so we're really excited."
Whoever buys the Marlins will need 75 percent approval from MLB before the sale is finalized.
Bush and Jeter lead one of multiple groups that have submitted bids for the Marlins. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said last week none had yet been accepted. Bush told the media he expects a decision to be made soon on which group buys the team, but the process could take months to complete.