HOUSTON (November 19, 2010)--Chairman and CEO Drayton McLane, Jr. announced today that he will begin accepting offers for the sale of the Houston Astros Baseball Club.
The Baylor grad and native Central Texan has been the owner of the Houston Astros since purchasing the club in November of 1992.
“After much thought and discussion with my family, we decided that the time was right for this,” McLane said. “The past 18 seasons have been a wonderful experience for us. We have been fortunate to be part of something special here.
“When you own a Major League Baseball team, you have an opportunity to impact your city in so many ways. The fans, players, business and political leaders have all embraced us warmly. We’re proud of the success we had on the field, but are equally as proud of the success we had off of it. One of our goals was to have a positive impact in the community, and I think we did that. Now, we look forward to passing the torch to start a new era of Astros baseball.”
Steve Greenberg of Allen & Company has been secured to work with prospective buyers on the sale of the team. All further inquiries on the sale of the club are to be directed to Greenberg.
During McLane’s 18-year tenure of ownership, the Astros have had their most successful run in franchise history, posting the fourth-best record in the National League in that span while making six postseason appearances. Prior to 1993, the Astros had just three playoff appearances in the first 31 seasons of the franchise (1962-92).
In 2005, the Astros won their first National League Championship, and on October 25, 2005, Minute Maid Park played host to the first World Series game ever played in the state of Texas. Overall during McLane’s ownership, the Astros won four division titles and two Wild Card berths.
One of McLane’s most significant accomplishments as owner of the Astros was the construction of Minute Maid Park, a state-of-the-art facility with a retractable roof. The new ballpark, which opened in April of 2000, greatly increased the development of the surrounding Houston downtown area. During the ballpark’s first 11 seasons, more than 30 million fans have attended Astros games, with the club reaching the three-million mark in four of those 11 seasons.
Throughout their ownership of the Astros, Drayton and Elizabeth McLane have donated more than $30 million in charitable contributions, including almost $7.0 million through the Astros in Action Foundation, which was formed in 2000 to serve Houston and surrounding communities.
In April of 2010, the Astros opened the Astros MLB Urban Youth Academy, which was made possible through a joint venture between Astros In Action, Major League Baseball and the city of Houston. The academy, which is located in North Houston, provides an opportunity for underprivileged youth to develop life skills while learning and playing the game of baseball.
McLane’s commitment to making a positive difference in the community was exemplified in 2008 during the aftermath of Hurricane Ike when McLane, the Astros in Action Foundation, and the Astros players and staff made a combined $1 million donation to the Gulf Coast Ike Relief Fund. The team also enacted numerous initiatives at Minute Maid Park during the final week of the 2008 season that focused on relief for hurricane victims, including a blood drive, food and supply drives, and collection of donations for the Gulf Coast Ike Relief Fund.
During his 18 years in Major League Baseball, McLane has served on MLB’s Executive Committee, Finance Committee, Legislative Affairs, Ownership and Realignment committees, and the MLB Advanced Media Board.