Is Bill Murray buying the Slammers?

Buyers would have 75% ownership if sale completed

Actor Bill Murray watches a baseball game between the Miami Marlins and the Chicago Cubs, Saturday, April 29, 2023, in Miami.

A sale of the Joliet Slammers is in the works, and the potential buyer is said to be someone big.

“These are world renowned people who are buying this team,” Joliet City Council member Suzanna Ibarra said Wednesday. “They are excited about this opportunity.”

While not identifying the buyers, Ibarra emphasized that they are widely known.

“This is the best thing that could possibly happen,” she said.

Slammers season ticket holders were notified Wednesday that actor and Chicago-area native Bill Murray is among a group who has bought the team, according to a report Thursday by WJOL-AM.

Murray was a partner with the Veeck family, which also has Chicago roots, in ownership of the St. Paul Saints in Minnesota. Fellow Saints owners included Mike Veeck, the son of the late Bill Veeck who introduced the exploding scoreboard to old Comiskey Park when he owned the Chicago White Sox.

Murray and the Veecks sold their interest in the St. Paul Saints earlier this year.

Slammers General Manager Heather Mills would not comment on whether the Veecks and Murray are involved in the sale of the Joliet team and said a sale has not been completed.

“There’s ongoing discussion – nothing final at this time,” she said.

Fans from one of the suites celebrate a Joliet Slammers home run against the Ottawa Titans at the home opener. Friday, May 13, 2022, in Joliet.

Ibarra heads the City Council Stadium Committee, which will consider the sale of a majority interest of Joliet’s minor league baseball team Monday.

While not confirming an offer for the team is finalized, the Slammers, however, have asked that an approval of the sale be put on the agenda for the regular council meeting on Tuesday.

Mills said that for a sale to be completed there must be approval from the city.

City approval is needed for a sale of 50% or more ownership of the team. Joliet has no ownership of the Slammers, but the city does own Duly Health and Care Field, and Joliet approves the team that plays there.

The Joliet Slammers play their home games at Duly Health and Care Field. Jan. 21, 2023.

Deputy City Attorney Chris Regis said the pending deal does not involve a complete change in ownership, but a majority ownership of the Slammers would change.

“If they sell 50% or more, we have to approve it,” Regis said.

A letter from Mills to the city requesting approval said the new owners would have 75% of the team shares.