Later today, the collective eyes of the sports world will be fixated on game 1 of the World Series pitting the Chicago Cubs against the Cleveland Indians. As many have pointed out, the 2016 World Series matchup was seemingly lifted out of a movie as both the Cubs and the Indians currently sport the longest World Series championship droughts in the majors. The Indians haven’t won a title in 67 years but the hapless Cubs have it way worse, without a title to their name in 107 long and frustrating seasons.
From a baseball perspective, this year’s World Series matchup is interesting for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that the Indians managed to sneak into the Series after batting just .168 against the Toronto Bluejays to get into the World Series. Of course, that didn’t matter much given that the Indians defense all but anchored the team.
Baseball aside, there’s also an interesting political component to tonight’s game, at least in relation to the Indians in particular. With Donald Trump now a household name thanks to his bizarre and surprisingly ongoing campaign for the U.S. Presidency, you might be surprised to learn that Trump back in the early 80s actually made an offer to acquire the Indians. It may sound like a strange story at first glance, but recall that Trump in the early 80s was a fixture on the U.S. sports scene on account of his involvement with the USFL.
As for Trump’s baseball aspirations, Cleveland.com reports that Trump’s bid for the Indians checked in at $13 million. The deal obviously never went through, and the report notes that it’s because refused to agree to terms that would prohibit him from moving the team out of Cleveland.
Had the deal gone through, many believed at the time — and still do — that the front-runner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination would have wasted little or no time moving the team to another city, most likely Tampa.
Trump reportedly increased his $13 million offer substantially but ultimately refused to agree to keep the Indians in Cleveland for a period lasting longer than three years. Consequently, negotiations never moved forward. All in all, Indians fans can breath a sigh of relief, especially in light of how Trump so famously mismanaged things in the USFL, a story which was brilliantly told in a great 30 for 30 episode on ESPN.
As a point of interest, a copy of Trump’s $13 million offer to the Indians can be viewed via the source link below.