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Will Pirates open the books?

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PHOENIX — I got an e-mail this morning from Michael Ozanian, the Forbes editor who last week blogged that Bob Nutting might try to sell the Pirates this summer. Ozanian took exception to Nutting’s brush-off of his report, as well as the Pirates’ routine dismissal of Forbes’ annual franchise valuation numbers.

“I stand by everything in my blog,” Ozanian said. “I would be very happy to review my data with Nutting’s data in front of a non-biased arbiter like yourself to see who is right and publish the results of the findings in both your publication and Forbes.

“The notion that information in our blogs is less credible than information published in Forbes magazine shows Nutting’s ignorance of Forbes. All of our platforms — blogs, videos, online articles, print articles — are subject to the same standards.”

I’d welcome the chance to compare and contrast Forbes’ valuation figures with data from the Pirates. I’m sure a lot of fans would love to crunch those numbers, too.

Of course, the Pirates refuse to open their books, which is their right. But letting in a little sunlight would put a stop to a lot of speculation about the franchise’s status now and in the future.

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