Wichita The draft of a letter of intent from a baseball consultant hired by the city of Springdale, Ark., to the president of the Wichita Wranglers appears to represent another step toward moving the minor-league franchise.
The letter from Minnesota-based Conventions, Sports & Leisure International to Jonathan Dandes was released Wednesday by the Springdale mayor's office, and outlines "the general terms, conditions and assumptions" upon which the Wranglers and Springdale must agree in entering a formal lease.
Brian Parker of CSL International, the author of the letter, declined to comment Thursday on the status of an agreement, other than to say the two sides are "in negotiations."
"Whenever both sides agree to the terms, the LOI is outlining the terms that the team would agree to," he told The Associated Press. He said the draft letter was "very close" to a final copy but warned "there are still terms that are being negotiated."
"This is by no means a final lease," he said. "These are the first parameters."
The Wranglers, a farm team for the Kansas City Royals in the Double-A Texas League, have reportedly been negotiating with Springdale-area officials since voters there approved a bond issue to build a 6,000-seat stadium for a minor-league team.
The draft of the letter, dated Aug. 1, puts forth a mutual target date of Aug. 24 for completion of an agreement. However, it also states that the letter of intent can be terminated by either party if a lease is not agreed upon by Sept. 30.
Springdale Mayor Jerre Van Hoose said upon releasing the letter Wednesday that he did not anticipate an announcement anytime soon but that the city was "starting to approach the final stages" of negotiations.
The city hopes to lure the team before the 2008 season.
"You never know when both sides will sign off on it," Van Hoose said. "But even if the agreement came five minutes from now, it would still have to be voted on by the City Council. It might be two weeks from next Tuesday before that happens."