Braves' Sale Approved by Baseball Owners

NEW YORK (AP) - The sale of the Atlanta Braves from Time Warner to Liberty Media was approved by baseball owners Wednesday.

The sale was agreed to by the corporations in February, and officials say the transaction values the team at 450 million dollars. The companies wanted the deal completed Wednesday because of changes in tax laws that start Thursday.

The baseball team, a group of craft magazines and approximately one billion in cash are to be transferred to Liberty in exchange for about 60 million shares of Time Warner.

Ted Turner took control of the Braves in 1976, and Time Warner acquired the team in 1996 when it merged with Turner Broadcasting System.

At a New York News conference, commissioner Bud Seliz said from Braves slugger Hank Aaron will take on an increased role with the team. After his playing days, Aaron became a Braves vice president and was director of player development for 13 years. He became a senior vice president in December 1989 and is currently on the club's board of directors.

Starting Thursday, the Braves will be a self-governed subsidiary of Liberty Media, with McGuirk reporting to the team's board in his capacity as chairman and president. John Schuerholz remains as general manager and Bobby Cox as manager.

McGuirk said the sale includes a provision that the Braves will have a payroll at least as high as its current level -- about 90 million dollars at the start of the season. The ballpark will continue to be known as Turner Field.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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