Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Jerry Reinsdorf, sons discuss plan
By Melissa Isaacson
Jerry Reinsdorf confirmed Tuesday a published report that he has recommended to his sons a family succession plan that includes selling its interest in the Chicago White Sox, but he emphasized the decision won't be up to him.
Reinsdorf is the controlling partner of the White Sox and Chicago Bulls. His sons include Michael, who is the Bulls' president and COO, as well as David and Jonathan.
"I recommended it to the boys, but it's up to them when the time comes," Reinsdorf said.
Reinsdorf, 77, a lifetime baseball fan who saw a dream realized when the White Sox won the 2005 World Series, joked that he does not intend to go anywhere anytime soon. He added lightheartedly that he wants to live at least until 2033, which will mark the 100-year anniversary of the first Major League Baseball All-Star Game, played at Comiskey Park.
The White Sox echoed Reinsdorf's sentiments in a statement Tuesday.
"Jerry appreciates all the care and concern about his future, but is happy to still be going strong, and he plans to be around for quite a while longer," the team said. "
He recognizes that he may be in the fourth quarter, but as he said, he's playing for triple overtime.
"The succession of the White Sox is fluid at this point and ultimately will depend on timing and other circumstances. Certainly, nothing is definitive, and right now the plan is to address succession after the 2033 All-Star Game."
Reinsdorf, who will be honored Wednesday at the 2013 Sports Business Awards with a lifetime achievement award, told the Sports Business Journal that the family has no plans to sell the Bulls. The Bulls have led the NBA in attendance the past four seasons and have been at or near the top nearly every season since Michael Jordan led the franchise to six titles in the 1990s.
The White Sox have struggled to draw fans to the South Side of Chicago. Despite being in first place for much of the 2012 season, they drew nearly 1 million fewer fans than a Cubs team that lost 101 games.