It's official: Comcast buys 3 minor-league teams

Baysox, Keys, Shorebirds join Philly-based company

January 10, 2001|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,SUN STAFF

Philadelphia-based Comcast-Spectacor yesterday completed its purchase of three Maryland-based minor-league baseball franchises - the Bowie Baysox, Frederick Keys and Delmarva Shorebirds - from Maryland Baseball LLC.

Also changing hands in the deal were Excel Food Services Co. and Ballpark Services, which will fall under Comcast-Spectacor management companies. Terms were not disclosed.

While making the announcement, Peter Luukko, president of Comcast-Spectacor Ventures, appointed Frank Miceli as vice president of minor-league operations. He will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the three Orioles affiliates as well as the Philadelphia Phantoms, the American Hockey League affiliate to the NHL's Flyers.

"Frank has done a tremendous job in building a successful marketing and sales campaign for the Phantoms," Luukko said. "His marketing plans for the Phantoms have been a model for other minor-league teams throughout the country."

Miceli is a recipient of the James C. Hendy Award, presented annually to the AHL's outstanding executive.

The acquisition, originally revealed nine months ago, was approved by the three leagues in which the teams play and the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues (minors).

Said John Danos, the Baysox's general manager, "We're enormously excited about this. Comcast has the experiences and resources that will only enhance our product. Getting the word out is one of our biggest needs, and they can help us greatly in that regard. What we have to do is get used to working through relationships based in Philadelphia."

No major personnel or operational changes are expected initially.

Comcast-Spectacor also owns the Flyers, the NBA's Philadelphia 76ers, the First Union Center, the First Union Spectrum and Comcast SportsNet.

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