Official: Sale of 51s to partnership expected to be completed by March

The sale of the Las Vegas 51s Triple A baseball team to a partnership of The Howard Hughes Corp. and businessman Steven Mack is expected to be finalized by mid-March, said Don Logan, the 51s executive director.

The selling price is expected to be in the $20 million range, which is about what Triple A ballclubs are selling for these days, Logan said Thursday.

“The terms of the sale of the team are solid,” Logan said.

The Hughes Corp./Mack joint venture, or Summerlin Las Vegas Baseball Group LLC, is buying the 51s from the Stevens Baseball Group, a Detroit family trust.

Logan said he expects the 51s purchase deal to close by the time the Chicago Cubs and Texas Rangers play preseason games at Cashman Field in Las Vegas on March 16 and 17.

Before closing the deal, the new owners must get a get a final handle on the uncertainty of the national economy and the financial impacts of tax issues and health reform, Logan said.

While the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority board three months ago approved a 10-year lease extension for the 51s to play at Cashman Field to 2022, the new owners hope to eventually build a new ballpark near Red Rock Resort, Logan said. He estimated a new 51s ballfield would cost around $50 million. Howard Hughes Corp. is the developer of the Summerlin master-planned community in the western Las Vegas foothills.

The Pacific Coast League team has been in Las Vegas for 30 years and is the new Triple A affiliate of the New York Mets. The deal with the Mets is a two-year agreement. Before the Mets signed the deal, the 51s were the Triple A team for the Toronto Blue Jays from 2009-12 and the Los Angeles Dodgers from 2001-08.

Stephens Media, which owns the Las Vegas Review-Journal, retains an option to acquire 10 percent of the team but does not now own a stake in the team.

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