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Twin Cities execs try to craft offer for Twins
Associated Press

A group of Twin Cities executives is rallying to save the Minnesota Twins.

The group is trying to assemble a new offer to buy the team and hopes to persuade Twins owner Carl Pohlad to delay his decision on whether to sell the franchise back to Major League Baseball, which would then discontinue the team, the Star Tribune reported Saturday.

Joining efforts are Jim Campbell, chairman of Wells Fargo Bank of Minnesota; Paul Grangaard, a top executive of U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray; Vance Opperman, the former chief executive of West Publishing; and attorney Michael Ciresi, among others.

"I don't want to believe that Carl Pohlad and his family would take the $250 million and run," Ciresi said Friday, using the figure that has been rumored as the offer from other team owners. "He owes more to this community than that. He stepped up to the plate in 1984 to buy the Twins."

However, according to media reports, baseball owners could vote as early as Tuesday, which would mean Ciresi and the others need Pohlad to agree to a delay.

"In order for us to do anything, two things have to happen: they (Major League Baseball) have to put off that vote, and business and political leaders in Minnesota need to come to the forefront," said Ciresi, who is chairman of the Robins Kaplan Miller and Ciresi law firm.

The Associated Press was unable to reach Pohlad for comment Saturday.

Ciresi told the Star Tribune that the group has a shot at raising acquisition financing over time. However, the group does not plan an offer near the $200 million-plus the Pohlads believe they can get from their fellow owners.

Forbes magazine valued the franchise at $99 million earlier this year.

And only last month, Pohlad's son, Jim, 48, said the family intended to keep the Twins, despite a lack of success in getting the Legislature to help finance a new stadium.