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Texas Rangers Auction In Progress

Update: 12:06 am CDT: After many bids back and forth, and an impressive bit of cunning by the Greenberg group to stay afloat in this thing, Cuban ups his bid to $390 million (cash portion). They're taking money out of the escrow now to bid. The lenders must be happy about all of this. Lot's of cash to go around now no matter who wins this.

But there will be endless legal battles regardless. This isn't over. Remember that when someone tells you it is.

The total price is now in excess of $588 million.

-Brad Gardner

[Update: 8:20 p.m. CDT] - Something may be brewing. Supposedly.

In the meantime, we're well over the deadline imposed by the judge for Greenberg to respond to the counter-bid by Cuban & Crane.

Right now, everyone is just sitting around and waiting.

[End Update]

[Update: 6:20 p.m. CDT] -  .......yawn.

[End Update]

[Update: 4:35 p.m. CDT] - And so....we wait.

Another hour (or more) delay, since G&R just now received the paperwork for C&C's bid. They now have an hour to review it. Seems there's a lot of contention over whether the original bid was qualified or not.

The judge has said that come 9:30 tomorrow morning, there is going to be a confirmation hearing on a bid. So they have all night tonight to work through this mess.

Hold on to your hats, folks. We're in it for the long haul.

[End Update]

[Update: 3:16 p.m. CDT] - Well, that was interesting.

After six hours of delays, the courtroom became fairly action-filled. The Rangers announced that the initial high bid was by Cuban & Crane, which would presumably lead to a review and a response (and hopefully a new bid) by Greenberg & Ryan. Cuban's bid was $25 million higher than Greenberg's, so G&R's next bid would need to increase their bid by $27 million in order to continue.

Except that immediately, G&R's attorneys once again attacked the validity of the bid. They stated that the actual value of both bids were comparable, based on "discounts" Cuban received and based on the fact that G&R can immediately pay for the sale, before August 12th. They say that the delay in C&C getting approved by the MLB and the delay in actually paying for the team decreases the value of the bid.

The debtors and C&C's attorneys claimed that G&R are just trying to delay once more.

The judge gave Greenberg one hour to respond.

[End Update]

[Update: 1:50 p.m. CDT] - Here's an interesting update.

According to several reports from the courthouse today, Greenberg and Ryan attempted to broker a deal to purchase the Rangers at the very last minute last night. This sale, and the deal, as supposedly approved by Monach -- the lending company that's been the biggest thorn in the side of this sale all along. The deal was close to being made....

..yet was blocked by a secondary lien holder. That lien holder: Sal Galatioto.

Wait a second...isn't Sal Galatioto the one whose firm has been hired by Tom Hicks to broker the sale of the Dallas Stars? So he's working hand in hand with Hicks on one side, yet blocking the sale of the Rangers from the other side. It's no secret now that Hicks does NOT want to sell to Greenberg and wants the most money, trying to force the sale of the club to Jim Crane and Mark Cuban. He's been playing both sides all along apparently.

How is this legal? I have no clue.

[End Update]]

More updates after the jump.


[Update: 1:20 p.m. CDT  - Nothing has happened yet.


[End Update]

[Update: 11:15 a.m. CDT - Here's the latest:]

Chuck Greenberg attempted to discredit the Cuban/Crane bid by claiming the bid was unqualified. Judge Nelms determined that bid was, in fact, qualified and the auction will commence. However, that attempt delayed the auction by about three hours.

Right now, we're expecting the high bid to be announced at 11:30 a.m. CDT, kicking off the auction. Then it get's very slow and boring. We're hearing there could be 30 minutes between bids, and if Greenberg does not have the initial high bid he's asked for an hour to review before his next bid.

Oh yeah. Fun stuff.

Once more, on why this is important to us Stars fans:

If Mark Cuban's ownership group wins this auction, and he is not approved by the MLB, then we go right back to square one with the sale of the Rangers. That is not a good thing for HSG, and that directly affects the sale of the Stars, as he's going to want to get that sale done much sooner than later. You also wonder if the lenders would turn their eyes towards the Stars and begin raising hell.

If Greenberg wins, then this sale is done within a few weeks.

There's also the recent news that apparently News Corp. wasn't exactly serious about bidding on the Rangers, and was just looking try and force the bidders on extending their contract with FSN. I wonder if that holds true with their bid with the Stars as well.

Then there's the rumblings about a Cuban-created sports network for the Dallas area. Does he want to include the Stars? Who knows?

My head hurts.

[End Update]

The auction for the sale of the Texas Rangers is currently in progress in court over in Fort Worth.

Sort of.

There's been a bit of a delay, but I'm expecting things to get rolling soon. Here's the latest developments since yesterday:

The bidders are down to two groups: Jim Crane and Mark Cuban vs. Chuck Greenberg and Nolan Ryan.

Greenberg and Ryan, at the last minute, pulled the side deal that includes 154 acres around Rangers Ballpark in Arlington which is supposedly going to give them more room for financing.

We'll update the site later today with the final rulings, if any, that come of today's proceedings.

For real-time updates on today's action, I highly suggest following Daniel Kaplan on Twitter.