New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter is saluted by the fans at Target Field in a game against the Minnesota Twins.
Derek Jeter, one of the most beloved Yankees ever, won the auction to buy the Miami Marlins along with Jeb Bush and others. (Photo: Getty Images)

It seems as though Jeffrey Loria is attempting to sell the Miami Marlins once again and one of New York’s favorite MLB legends could be in the hunt to purchase them.

 

Charlie Gasparino and Brian Schwartz of Fox Business reported on Wednesday that former New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter has “expressed interest” in buying the team.

 

This crops up a little over a month after Loria was close to selling the team for $1.6 billion to the Kushner family. However, they backed out when Loria was linked with becoming President Donald Trump’s ambassador to France, per the Associated Press.

 

Jeter, who retired from baseball after the 2014 season, has not made it a secret that he wants to own an MLB franchise. He told Michael McCarthy of the Sporting News in February 2015 that it was his “ultimate goal.”

 

He later shed some more insight on his motives with CNBC in 2016, stressing his desire to help the game grow.

“I think baseball is taking somewhat of a back seat to some of the other sports. Some of the other sports are the sexy sports,” Jeter said. “I think kids, nowadays they look at players playing in college and the next year they're in the NFL or the NBA. Baseball, you sort of get lost, because you have to play in the minor leagues for a little bit. Kids in this generation are into instant gratification.”

Jeter would bring another high-profile name to the front office of Major League Baseball, which already includes one of the game’s most powerful pitchers in Nolan Ryan working with the Houston Astros.

He’d also join a society of a number of stars, both current and former, who currently have ownership stakes in major professional sports franchises around the world.

If Jeter manages to purchase the Marlins, or any other team for that matter, he can look at some of his peers to see what he can expect as a majority owner.

 

Mario Lemieux

Played for: Pittsburgh Penguins (1984-1997, 2000-2006)

Team owned: Pittsburgh Penguins (since 1999)

Arguably the greatest player of his generation behind Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux is one of the greatest scorers to lace up a pair of skates.

With 690 goals and 1,033 assists, Lemieux fueled the Penguins to their first Stanley Cup titles in 1991 and 1992.

Deferring his salary for years, and shortly after his retirement in 1997, his Penguins declared bankruptcy for a second time in franchise history. This time however, this carried the threat of the team relocating.

Owed more than $32 million, Lemieux diverted most of his money into equity in the team where the NHL Board of Governors approved him as the first player in North American sports to own the team he played for.

Under Lemieux’s ownership, the Penguins drafted Sidney Crosby, moved into a new home at PPG Paints Arena and won two more Stanley Cups in 2009 and 2016.

 

Magic Johnson

Played for: Los Angeles Lakers (1979-1991, 1995-96)

Team owned: Los Angeles Dodgers (since 2012)

Magic Johnson revolutionized the point guard position during his time with the “Showtime” Lakers of the 1980s.

His rivalry with Boston Celtics legend Larry Bird also helped revitalize the game and bring it to new heights before Michael Jordan’s arrival.

As a successful businessman who built Magic Johnson Enterprises from the ground up, the former point guard tried his hand in baseball in 2012 after his bidding group, Guggenheim Partners, purchased the Dodgers for $2 billion in 2012.

He personally contributed $50 million to the group’s efforts.

A prominent figure in Los Angeles, Johnson has been a staple at Dodger Stadium over the years and has seen his team make the playoffs in each of the last four seasons.

 

Michael Jordan

Played for: Chicago Bulls (1984-1998), Washington Wizards (2001-2003)

Team owned: Charlotte Hornets (since 2010)

Widely regarded as the greatest player in NBA history, Jordan took his success on the court and made it into an empire with his own personal brand.

Whether it was on shoes or T-shirts or jerseys, the “Jumpman” logo has become one of the most recognizable silhouettes on the planet.

In 2006 he returned to North Carolina, the state in which he grew up and attended college, as a minority investor for the then-Charlotte Bobcats.

Four years later, he shelled out $275 million to become the first former NBA player to become a majority owner of a franchise.

Since his arrival, Jordan has rebranded the Charlotte organization and brought it back to its roots. In 2014 the Bobcats changed their name to the Hornets, which was the name of the original Charlotte franchise from 1989-2002 before it moved to New Orleans.

The franchise hasn’t seen as much success as Jordan saw as a player though, making the postseason just three times since he became majority owner.

 

Among other notable big names that have dabbled in ownership, LeBron James owns a stake of Liverpool F.C. in England and the Williams sisters Venus and Serena own a share of the Miami Dolphins.

All three are minority shareholders, however.