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Volume 24 No. 156
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NL Franchise Notes: D'Backs Happy To Be Out From Under Weight Of Backloaded Contracts

In Arizona, Daria Del Colliano noted D'Backs Managing Partner Ken Kendrick is "pleased to have his club out from under that albatross of debt this season." Kendrick said, "We can now think in a way that you would always want to think in your business that you don't have an extraordinary obligation that isn't helping you win ballgames." However, that "doesn't mean the D-backs aren't willing to continue to spend if TV revenue goes up." Kendrick said, "If the TV money is there then we'll be able to spend them on players" (, 4/6). Meanwhile, in Phoenix, Mike Sunnucks noted the D'Backs drew 108,112 fans for their opening weekend sweep of the Giants, the "best opening weekend for the team" since '03 (, 4/9).

: In S.F., Gwen Knapp wrote the MLB Giants' mascot "may know the team's leading investor, Charles Johnson, better than any of the current players do." Johnson "has signaled a strong intention to stay removed from the day-to-day operations of the team." As he accrued a larger stake last year and became "publicly acknowledged as the top partner, the Giants declined all requests to interview him." Johnson's current stake in the team "has been estimated at close" to 25% (S.F. CHRONICLE, 4/8).

ROOM FOR IMPROVEMENT: Rockies Owner, Chair & CEO Dick Monfort said yesterday, "We stunk last year. We've got the prettiest ballpark in America. We've got the best weather. I think we do everything in our power to let fans have the greatest experience. But really, at the end of the day, they are here to see us win. So that's what we have to do. We have to win. We have to put out a competitive team that plays hard every game" (DENVER POST, 4/10).