In a brief press release this morning, the Washington Nationals announced that Theodore N. Lerner has stepped down as the Nats’ Managing Principal Owner. His son, Mark. D Lerner is now stepping into the role after serving as one of the principal owners of the team since the Lerner family purchased the franchise in the summer of 2006.
“Major League Baseball formally approved Mark as the team’s ‘control person‘ earlier today during its quarterly ownership meeting in New York City,” according to the press release.
“Owning a baseball team in my hometown had long been a dream of mine,” Ted Lerner said.
“Twelve years ago, when Major League Baseball selected my family as the owners of the Washington Nationals, I could not have been happier. I always knew that someday my son, Mark, would take over my role as Managing Principal Owner. That day has come. I look forward to watching him take the helm and help lead this team to a world championship.”
“Baseball has long been my passion,” Mark Lerner added. “Since being awarded the team in 2006, my family has taken great pride in our fans and this team. We have always strived for excellence both on and off the field. That will not change. Our family will continue to put our fans first and do everything possible to bring a World Series trophy to D.C.
“It is incredibly special for my mother and father to be able to see me take the helm. And it means so much to me that they chose to make this change now.”
Talking to veteran Washington Post columnist Barry Svrluga about the change at the top of the organization, the new Managing Principal Owner assured the WaPost reporter they will keep the Nationals in the family.
“We will never sell the Nationals,” Mark Lerner said. “That’s what we’ve worked to get all those years. We think we do a pretty good job of it. There’s no intention of this family — certainly while I’m alive and my sisters and brothers-in-law are alive — nobody’s going to sell this team.”