MADISON COUNTY, Ala. - BallCorps, LLC has confirmed to WHNT News 19 that they have been approved by Major League Baseball to purchase the Mobile BayBears from the current owners.
The sale is set to close later this week.
A spokesperson for BallCorps tells us it is too early to talk relocation, as they aren't officially owners yet. However, WHNT News 19 reviewed a confidential investment document in July, where the company solicited investors to help complete the purchase of the team with the hope of relocating them to Madison County.
The document says the company has met with leaders in Madison County as well as the City of Madison who have “expressed a willingness to construct a state-of-the-art ballpark within the largest mixed-use development in Alabama, slated to open for the 2019 season.”
The proposal in the document reviewed by WHNT News 19 says the ballpark would be in the Town Madison development. That’s the mixed-use development planned in the area of I-565 and Zierdt Road. Even at the time though, the head of the company told us it was a fluid situation and more than ten versions of those investment documents had been produced.
There are still hurdles to clear for relocation, including a new round of approvals.
Plus, Mobile city officials have indicated they will not give in without a fight. "Until it is a done deal, I hope the City of Mobile is in play and we will make our pitch to the new owner, whoever it may be," said Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson.
The City of Madison's planning commission has already approved regulation changes that would allow for the construction of a ballpark at Town Madison Meanwhile, Madison City Council has to officially approve them to go into affect. The first public hearing on the topic will be Monday, November 13th to vote on the new zoning classification called "Urban Center District." The second, on November 27th, will be for that new zoning to be applied to the Town Madison property.