ORLANDO EXPANSION ASKS TO CHANGE SCHEDULED PROPOSAL DATE
MLB officials will hear expansion proposals on November 1
from groups in Orlando, Tampa-St. Pete and Phoenix, and two groups
from Northern VA. Orlando expansion organizer Norton Herrick has
asked to reschedule his 90-minute slot so his entire group can be
present. Herrick's partners, attorney Paul Jacobs and accountant
Steve Kurtz, might be unable to attend because of involvement in a
bankruptcy case involving initial Rockies investor Mickey Monus.
Herrick has produced a $150M credit line to pay for the franchise,
but relies on the experience of Jacobs and Kurtz, who were
"instrumental in snaring" a team for Denver (Tracy & Lebowitz,
ORLANDO SENTINEL, 10/25). After speaking with Red Sox Owner John
Harrington, chair of MLB's Expansion Committee, Herrick said he
thought the committee would be open to rescheduling. But
committee member George Steinbrenner disagreed. Steinbrenner
thinks "everybody should play by the same rules" and that Orlando
would "benefit" from a delay. Herrick said "it could really hurt"
Rockies Owner Jerry McMorris if Jacobs and Kurtz have to leave the
Monus trial, but that he will be there November 1 if necessary
(Bill Fay, TAMPA TRIBUNE, 10/26).
ROBBING PETER TO PAY VIRGINIA? In Washington, Tom Boswell
writes that the strike and Orioles Owner Peter Angelos' actions
during the dispute could help Northern VA's bid for an expansion
franchise. Noting that Angelos has given "comfort to the union."
Boswell cites one source "close to many owners": "They control
each other with threats of retaliation. He (Angelos) will
probably find out the hard way." Boswell points out that growing
controversy in Congress over baseball's anti-trust exemption could
also prompt a Metro DC expansion team as a way to "smooth
feathers" on Capitol Hill (WASHINGTON POST, 10/26). Columnist
Dick Heller suggests the two Northern VA groups merge to produce
$1.15B "to wave" at the expansion committee (WASHINGTON TIMES,