SAVANNAH, Ga. -- The owner of the Savannah Cardinals Thursday said her decision to sell the team to the St. Louis Cardinals was purely business and had nothing to do with her being the first black president of a professional baseball team since the black franchises of the 1950s.
'I certainly hope we've done enough good things and made enough initiatives so they respect us as businesspeople having to make a business decision and not based on whether we're black or white,' Tracy Lewis said.
Lewis owned the team for two years and received national attention when Los Angeles Dodgers former general manager Al Campanis asserted on national televison that blacks were not ready to take over managerial positions in the game.
Campanis was didsmissed by the Dodgers for his statement. Lewis appeared on national television to respond to Campanis' statement.
'We all came to the conclusion,' Lewis said, referring to talks with family members who jointly own several radio stations. 'It was not an emotional decision. Financially, we had to decide what we had to do.'
Lewis said that while she was at times frustrated, she had a good time running the team and she was saddened to have to sell it.
Representatives for the St. Louis Cardinals will meet with Savannah Mayor John Rousakis and other city officials Friday to discuss a new lease for the team at Grayson Stadium.
The team posted a 69-69 record last season.