As Tribune Co. mulls a sale of its assets (including, obviously, the L.A. Times), it goes without saying that the Chicago Cubs may be in play. In an article in today's Chicago Sun-Times, business reporter Mary Wisniewski notes that analysts estimate the value of the Cubs "between $500 million and $650 million." Tribune bought the team in 1981 for $20.5 million; Wisniewski calls the purchase "one of the best investments the company ever made." (Or, as the headline states: "Despite embarrassing 98-year drought, Cubs field financial winner.")
Potential purchasers of the Cubbies? Wisniewski writes that former Cubs star Ernie "Let's Play Two" Banks approached Tribune about buying the team earlier this year, but was turned down. Wisniewski also notes that Donald Trump and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban have expressed interest. Recent sales of sports teams owned by corporations –- News Corp. unloading the Dodgers, Disney unloading the Angels and the (Mighty) Ducks –- indicate that an individual (or a group of partners) might emerge as the buyer.