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SBD/July 13, 2011/Franchises
Dodgers Have Already Spent All $35M In '11 Rights Fee From Fox
Published July 13, 2011
GETTING IT OUT IN THE OPEN: In L.A., Bill Shaikin notes the Dodgers "might not emerge from Bankruptcy Court for months," but MLB Commissioner Bud Selig "alluded Tuesday to the future of the team without Frank McCourt as its owner." Selig "avoided speaking directly about McCourt" yesterday. But a source indicated that the commissioner is "determined to oust McCourt and has not heard from any other owner concerned enough about the costs and risks of the bankruptcy fight to suggest yielding to McCourt." The source said that Selig "has no intention of considering any settlement under which McCourt would retain ownership" (L.A. TIMES, 7/13). Both Selig and MLBPA Exec Dir Michael Weiner said they were deeply troubled by the ongoing Dodgers bankruptcy case. Selig, predictably, chose his words carefully, said, "There are a lot of things I'd like to say, but I can't." But he referred to the Rangers bankruptcy case last year and the team's run of on- and off-field success since then, perhaps looking forward to a Dodgers era without McCourt. Weiner, meanwhile, said the union is "more than concerned" about the Dodgers, particularly given their impaired ability to win amid such dire financial conditions. "We want the Dodgers players to have the best chance to compete," he said. "It's not good for anybody for the Dodgers to struggle, to be compromised, to be crippled, whatever word you want to use. The Dodgers should be a flagship franchise of the league" (Fisher). In Boston, Dan Shaughnessy asked Selig yesterday how McCourt "was allowed to buy the Dodgers." Selig said, "Seven or eight years ago we had long, complicated ownership processes. Far more than we’ve ever had. ... There was no other application submitted to us, and it was something Fox really wanted to get done. And so that’s the answer to your question." He added, "We’ll work our way through all these things. This sport is so healthy and so robust in terms of popularity. We’ll work our way through this. Life doesn’t always work out exactly the way you want it to" (BOSTON GLOBE, 7/13).