Yes, the sale of the team to Bryan Bostic's group as originally planned is dead. But this is far from over.
EL presidente Joe McEacharn held a press conference in Richmond, Va. today proclaiming the new attempt to bring local and non-local parties together. There's no guarantee that a sale will happen, something McEacharn acknowledged today. He also tried blowing smoke you-know-where by saying people need to look at the teams not being mentioned. Right. Because the Rock Cats are leaving.
Could the Ryan-Sanders group do this? Yes. They have deep pockets and can move quickly. The spokesman for Richmond Baseball LC -- which has bumbled everything -- said the plan is to pair with other parties to make this happen by Aug. 1. He also said he was the head of the group, not Bostic. He also told others that money was the reason, but denied comment to me. Whatever. Richmond Baseball's handling of this entire process speaks volumes.
More than that, the EL's inability to do this the right way: from forcing Lou DiBella out against his will (read tomorrow's Bulletin) to plotting this entire move and damaging not just the team but the market shows how ruthless the league is when it wants its way.
Check out the audio of the press conference on NorwichBulletin.com. Thanks to my friend Wes McElroy at 910 AM in Richmond for providing and allowing the use of that file.
In the end, this deal has to get done because of all the damage done. I know that DiBella is disappointed that more people aren't supporting the team. All I can tell those who don't want to lose this team is go to games; rally other fans. Consider this a second-chance to try and change the outcome. Maybe Erie goes if attendance surges here.
McEacharn wants to get rid of DiBella and Norwich. He's willing to play dirty if he has to -- and he has. He's also played ignorant as he failed to see that Bostic had money. He didn't care. He hitched his wagon to a pipe dream on the mere hope of getting the team out of here and into Richmond.
Right now, he's left holding the pipe and scrambling to make this happen.
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