Jeb Bush


Associated Press

MIAMI – Jeb Bush says he is optimistic he can close a deal to buy the Miami Marlins despite stiff competition, and partner Derek Jeter would take charge of baseball operations.

Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred says two groups remain in the mix. The second bid is led by Tagg Romney, son of former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

Bush spoke publicly for the first time about his efforts to purchase the team from Jeffrey Loria.

”Given the interest we have inside Miami and among people that are potential partners, I’m really excited about it,” Bush said. ”It’s a sport that has huge potential in Miami. I’m excited about the community aspects of this.”

The former Florida governor, who lives in Miami, made his comments during a discussion at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Los Angeles.

Romney has yet to speak publicly about the bid by his group, which includes Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Glavine.