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Moorad agrees to purchase Triple-A club

Moorad agrees to purchase Triple-A club

SAN DIEGO -- Merritt Paulson, the owner of the Portland Beavers, the Triple-A affiliate of the Padres, issued a brief statement on Thursday saying that he has agreed to sell the team to Padres principal owner Jeff Moorad.

"We have entered into an agreement to sell the Triple-A franchise to an ownership group led by Jeff Moorad, owner of the San Diego Padres," said Paulson, who bought the team in 2007.

Paulson's statement indicated that "the deal is expected to close in December of this year."

The sale is conditional upon the approval of Major League Baseball.

According to the Padres, there will be no immediate comment regarding the relocation of the Triple-A team.

Paulson sold the team because PGE Park in downtown Portland is currently undergoing renovations. It's being converted into a soccer-specific facility that will accommodate a Major League Soccer team, the Portland Timbers, in 2011.

According to Baseball America, the Beavers will move to Tucson, where they will play for at least one season before moving to a permanent home and a new ballpark in Escondido, Calif. -- where Moorad's North County Baseball group has been negotiating a ballpark project with city officials.

According to the San Diego Union Tribune, the Escondido City Council was expected to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding to build the ballpark on Wednesday. However, the vote was delayed until later this fall as negotiations continue.

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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