Dodgers, MLB On Brink Of Reaching Solution To Revenue Sharing For TV Deal With TWC
The Dodgers and MLB Commissioner Bud Selig's office "appear poised to reach a peace treaty on the last major issue left from the bankruptcy battle launched" by former Owner Frank McCourt, which is how much the Dodgers would "have to share from their massive new television contract" with Time Warner Cable, according to Bill Shaikin of the L.A. TIMES. The issue had "sparked concern among baseball insiders" that team Chair Mark Walter and his partners at Guggenheim Baseball Management might "consider flipping the team for a huge profit rather than settle for less from the TV deal," which is worth nearly $8B over 25 years. However, neither Selig nor Walter would "want to risk what might happen if the bankruptcy court were to determine how to split the television money." Walter said any consideration of selling the team is "so far off the radar screen." He added that he was "confident the issue would be resolved in negotiations." Walter: "We're not trying to get anything special out of baseball. I don't believe there is going to be an issue with baseball." Shaikin wrote to the "credit" of GBM, it "did not wait" to upgrade Dodger Stadium. Walter said of Dodgers President & CEO Stan Kasten, "I think Stan and his team did an incredible job getting anything significant done with the stadium. We're not done with it, but I thought we did a great job of fixing it up." In one year of ownership, "just about everything but the won-lost record looks pretty good." Shaikin: "'Looking up' just might be the best way to describe the state of the franchise." Walter: "I don't want to give the impression we have done anything yet. We're just getting started" (L.A. TIMES, 5/5).
WELCOME TO HOLLYWOOD: The Dodgers currently are fourth in the NL West with a 13-17 record despite having the league's second-highest payroll. ESPN’s Curt Schilling said of the team's poor start, “I’m struck by the fact that L.A. is almost a Hollywood situation right now. You got a lot of glitz, a lot of glitter, a lot of names, but they're not winning ballgames” (“Baseball Tonight,” ESPN, 5/5).