POSTED: Tuesday, July 31, 2012 - 6:45pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 - 6:23pm
The group of El Pasoans who are in the process of trying to purchase a Triple-A Baseball team and bring it to El Paso say they received a key approval from Minor League Baseball’s Pacific Coast League and they are in the final stage of the acquisition.
The ownership group, formed as MountainStar Sports Group, LLC, was told recently that it had received approval of its Preliminary Application Review (“PAR”). This is a critical step in the Pacific Coast League's vetting process and allows a prospective owner to continue to the final phase of the approval process. Branch B. Rickey, President of the PCL, sent a letter dated July 30 to El Paso City Manager Joyce Wilson confirming that the ownership group received “unanimous” approval of its PAR application from the Pacific Coast League Executive Committee. The letter from Rickey also stated, “The Ownership Group has begun the next phase of baseball’s approval process by submitting a Control Interest Transfer (“CIT”) application to Minor League Baseball and the PCL.” The ownership group indicated the review of that application is now in process and according to league representatives, they have been told it is expected to be straightforward.
A partner in MountainStar Sports Group, Joshua Hunt, said the PAR approval letter from PCL President Rickey was a very positive sign from the Pacific Coast League and Minor League Baseball. “This is all part of the baseball process, and it’s a big step forward,” said Hunt. “There are other necessary steps of approval, but we’re getting very close.”
Hunt added that this is big, positive news for the City. “This is as close as this City’s ever been in its history to having a Triple-A, professionally-affiliated team. That’s exciting, and it’s a tribute to El Paso that our community was carefully vetted by Minor League Baseball and the PCL. Our City can be proud of that; there are only thirty Triple-A Baseball teams in the country.”
The ownership group consists of El Pasoans Woody L. Hunt, Chairman of Hunt Companies, Inc., and Paul L. Foster, Executive Chairman of Western Refining, Inc. Other members are Alejandra de la Vega Foster, President of Almacenes Distribuidores de la Frontera, and Joshua Hunt, Senior Vice President of Hunt Companies and Managing Director of Hunt Holdings.