Categorized | Mark Timmons

I Am Not A Frank McCourt Fan

I Am Not  A Frank McCourt Fan

… nor am I a hater.  I see the good he has done as the owner of the Dodgers.  I see the mistakes he has made as well.  However, he seems to have learned each time he makes a mistake.   Overall, the Dodgers are in much better shape than when he took over.  His lifestyle seems excessive – in my business, I work with the rich and famous and don’t really care about all their “stuff.”  My “stuff” is fine.  If I had their money, I wouldn’t live the way they live… but that’s just me.  If they want to live excessively (my opinion) that’s their gig. 

However, I am sick of this Dodger Divorce.  It’s a soap opera and I will no longer talk about it until the case is decided.  I’ll take it a step further – I’ll delete any posts or comments on this issue.  I don’t want to hear about it.  It’s something I don’t care about.  I don’t care about “what if.”  I care about “what is.”  The Dodgers IS.

That’s what I want to focus on:  The Dodgers.  The baseball part of the business.  The players.  The coaches.  The minor leagues.  That’s all.  If I can’t do that, I’ll shut this blog down.

This is a Dodger blog – not a McCourt blog.  I don’t want it.  I won’t have it and I’m done with it.  “Frank, I don’t live for you, and hopefully you get that.”

This blog is about Matt Kemp, Jon Broxton, Eric Gagne, Chad Billingsley, James Loney, Clayton Kershaw, Casey Blake, Rafael Furcal, Andre Ethier, Russell Martin and all the rest of the boys.

I am not against Frank McCourt… nor am I for him.

Whatever happens, happens – the Dodgers will thrive, or survive under Frank McCourt.

This is a Dodgers Zone!

Nothing else!

About Mark Timmons

When you see the invisible, you can do the impossible!

30 Responses to “I Am Not A Frank McCourt Fan”

  1. A Shot of Haeger says:

    goodbye ken, goodbye lawdog… see you guys in May at the earliest

    I think Furcal is going to hit over .300 this season and I really think DeWitt will win the second base job this year and we’ll trade Belliard at the deadline for either prospects or a second tier player.

    Feel good about this team

  2. Roger Dodger says:

    All teams have “if’s” right now. Some are still signing players. Some teams have Big if’s — some have just a few question marks.

    Listening to a few of the baseball reporters and jocks on the air the past few days — most of them see some Big if’s for the Dodgers. One guy said that all of the Dodger’s starting rotation have potential injury problems. Interesting.

    What appears to most here — is that the Dodger pen will be solid, one way or another. That the Dodgers will have several solid starters and two “if’s.” One a Big if — #5 starter, and one Small if — #4 starter.

    The bench rounds out the next “if’s.” And finally, the second base “if.” No way will the Dodgers have a Jeff Kent type player there. It would be nice to have 30 HR and 95+ RBI from second, but not gonna happen.

    Seems to be a FACT now — the salary will be lower, which in turn, usually results in a less than quality 25 man roster than we fans would like. But that is baseball today.

    I only have one question from the McCourt drama now. HOW IS THE TEAM MONEY TIED INTO THE MCCOURT FAMILY ??? Is the team money open for them to use personally? Or, do they draw a salary?

    Are there one set of books, or maybe two sets of books, or even three or more sets of books. And now Jamie want $1 million a month to live on !!!!!

  3. Rory says:

    Only what is huh?

    And the owners chewing each other up isn’t is?

    News is news. What is going on with our owners IS. We can hide our heads in the sand if we choose. It’s not like that hasn’t gone on in spades for the last decade.

    Later…………

  4. lawdog says:

    A Shot of Haeger is right. If our Dogs are going to improve on last year’s record, it will have to come from sources presently unexpected. Yhe team is “less than” it was last year, thanks to McCheap.

    I’m not sure you can censor the board in the manner you are suggesting and have it remain an open exchange of ideas about our favorite baseball team, Mark.

    How can you separate the fate of our team and likely success, or lack thereof, from the character of the owner making decisions about how much will be spent on issues like players salary and development of the farm system?

  5. lawdog says:

    Mark, you sound like a major Frank McCourt fan to me. This is a major change for the MountainMover I’ve come to know over the years.

    I have to wonder if maybe you do have some kind of vested interest in supporting a jackoff like McCourt now that you didn’t have before. It’s just not like you to be this authoritarian.

  6. lawdog says:

    Here’s a tip from Steve Ellis someone should send to Broxton:

    Here’s another baseball pitching tip…

    Speed the bat up, slow the bat down. No two
    pitches in a given at-bat should be the same speed.
    A pitcher should always be looking for ways to
    make the hitter lunge out in front of a pitch (by
    slowing the ball down) or swing late through the
    zone (by increasing the relative speed between
    pitches). This does not mean a pitcher should be
    less aggressive with his fastball; he should not
    throw every fastball at 100 percent velocity. There
    is a sweet spot in any mature pitcher’s delivery
    where he can throw easy strikes with good velocity.
    This is the base from which all other pitches
    (both off-speed and the “reaching back for something
    extra” fastball) are built. Lots of guys in the
    big leagues throw as hard as Pedro Martinez, but
    no one else in that class can change speeds like he
    does. That’s why some 95 mile-per-hour fastballs
    get laced, while others blow right past the best hitters
    in the world. And watching Greg Maddux, the
    master of changing speeds, throw an 84 mph fastball
    right past hitters is almost too much fun. Learn
    from the masters – change speeds.

  7. lawdog says:

    The biggest problem for our starting lineup is the hole at second base. That, and having a third baseman who is truly a geezer.

    We don’t have a normal starting rotation. Most squads have #1-#5 pitchers in the rotation. We, on the other hand, have four #4 starters and are still looking for the number #5 guy.

    Our pen is our strength.

  8. lawdog says:

    Are the McCourts in danger of becoming owners only the Great Gatsby could love?
    February 24, 2010 | 7:28 am
    It seems like only yesterday I was saying how easily the McCourts made it to distrust them. Oh, yeah. How silly.

    It’s a new day, it’s a new dawn, it’s the old McCourts.

    The latest exciting tidbit on the inner workings of the Dodgers owners comes courtesy of L.A. Times’ business columnist Michael Hiltzik, and this one’s a doozy.

    Hiltzik writes, again through documents filed in their ongoing divorce proceedings, that for the last six years Frank and Jamie McCourt have pocketed $108 million.

    And during that time they paid zero in federal and state income taxes.

    That’s zero. ZERO. Nada. Less than you and I will pay today alone. Unless, apparently, you happen to be stupidly rich.

    Ugh, how many more revelations like these can we really take? If only it were just about baseball.

    It’s not, of course, and as Bill Shaikin writes, the reasonably fast May 24 court case to decide which of the McCourts actually owns the team could be postponed to the All-Star break or even to the end of the season.

    And then comes the divorce trial. By then, we may all be numb from it all. Or really big Angels fans.

    Hiltzik’s column comes a day after Shaikin wrote that court documents showed the McCourts anticipated reducing the amount of club revenue spent on player payroll from 46% in 2007 to 25% by 2013, and maintaining it at that level the next five years. While revenue doubled.

    That possibility stung enough, and now comes the news that Joe Taxpayer is subsidizing their luxurious lifestyle. I think that’s what you call it when you own four homes in Malibu and Holmby Hills.

    Now apparently nothing they have done to avoid paying taxes is illegal. I’d love to have their accountant, but I’m sure I couldn’t afford him. Their strategy involves taking enormous tax losses from commercial real estate they held before buying the Dodgers, refinancing their assets and other tax things I’ll let Hiltzik explain.

    When the McCourts first purchased the Dodgers in 2004, they arrived from Boston armed with critics who were skeptical of their actual assets and accused them of grand manipulation of their financial numbers.

    Even as they carried a respectable payroll, improved Dodger Stadium, directed charitable foundations and led the team to consecutive division titles, for many, suspicious of the past lingered.

    And now comes this. Shameful stuff, really. Hard to fathom stuff. As F. Scott Fitzgerald told us in “The Great Gatsby,” the rich are different than you and me.

    Only, these rich people own the Los Angeles Dodgers, and as Frank McCourt has said on more than one occasion, that carries with it a civic responsibility. Like paying your fair share of taxes. Or at least some taxes.

    As Hiltzik notes, “People who practice tax avoidance on this scale don’t often emerge with their images unsullied.” Or without a visit from the tax auditor.

    Meanwhile, the Dodgers are in Arizona preparing for a new season. Trust in that.

    – Steve Dilbeck

  9. A Shot of Haeger says:

    lawdog,

    I agree with you that the Dodgers are going to have to get unexpected results in unexpected places. I think they will. Starting with improvement in Russell Martin. I think he’s going to have a much improved year…. as will Furcal.

    I think Billingsley will be much better and Kershaw will improve.

    Most importantly… Charlie Haeger will win 15 games… I don’t agree with a lot of what you say, especially about He who shall not be named… but I’m 100% behind you on Haeger and what he’ll do

  10. A Shot of Haeger says:

    Another thing on Haeger… do you think Torre is a little apprehensive about knuckleballers because of Aaron Boone hitting that homer off Wakefield in the ALCS a few years ago? I know HE was managing the winning team of that game at the time, but that has to stick with you.

    Maybe he’s afraid of counting on someone like that, when he knows how you really can’t make a mistake with a knuckleball and not have it hammered, while you can make mistakes with every other pitch and end up okay. Just throwing that out there.

  11. Mark Timmons says:

    Lawdog said:

    “Mark, you sound like a major Frank McCourt fan to me. This is a major change for the MountainMover I’ve come to know over the years.”

    Did you not read the title of this post? I am no McCourt fan. Nor am I a hater. I am ambivalent about him, but I will say it again “the team is better than it was six years ago.”

    Now, when you talk about taxes and the like, you are talking about something entirely different. Barack Marx has purposed taxing the rich, which is stupid as they will always afford guys who can find loopholes around the tax.

    I think McCourt’s lifestyle is crazy, but the government will always screw something up and guys like me will always get the short end of the stick (like this AM when I spent time discussing a $200,000.00 tax bill with the IRS). The simple fix is a “USE TAX” whereby you pay a percentage on everything you buy. This way, there is no tax shelter – if you have income and buy stuff – you pay. This gets money from the “underground economy” back into the tax cofers and eliminates the IRS.

    I guess McCourt deserves to make $25 mil a year if he’s paying a player that. After all, he’s the owner, but I still don’t have to like it.

    If McCourt would have had to pay a USE TAX, he would have already put many millions back into the government.

  12. Rory says:

    “Barack Marx has purposed taxing the rich, which is stupid as they will always afford guys who can find loopholes around the tax.”

    Barack Marx?

    You mean like George W. Hitler?

    At least Obama’s plan is PAID FOR.

    Why did you do this? I thought you were not going to allow political crap to be disbursed in here.

    You just opened the can Mark.

    Taxes are necessary to pay for schools, roads, bridges, protection of our borders and to pay for wars of choice against sovereign nations that had nothing to do with attacking us. Borrowing money for these things is what is really stupid. The fact that rich people like the McCourts can live the way they do on other people’s money and not pay taxes, while the middle class not only pays for it, but does the work and does the fighting, is what is wrong with this nation.

    So let me put is as simply as I possibly can here – tax the rich bastards the same amount that the middle class gets taxed. Close the loopholes for everybody (like that will ever happen) and demand a pay-as-you-go policy for everything.

    I agree with you about a “consumption” tax. But we don’t have it, so at least for the time being roll back the tax breaks that W gave the rich and hopefully we can start spending the people’s money for the good of the people.

  13. adam12 says:

    Mark, I’ve always enjoyed your posts, but your tax ideas are brilliant! I would encourage you to run for office, but you probably have far too much integrity.

  14. Jaydavis says:

    This is a Dodger blog – not a McCourt blog.  I don’t want it.  I won’t have it and I’m done with it.  “Frank, I don’t live for you, and hopefully you get that.”

    This is not the first time I’ve heard this Tim!!!! Whatever you do I enjoy your blog I haven’t checked the dodgers page for a year now The McPockets B pocketing Dodgers monies.

  15. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Mark,

    Your wrote this:

    “This blog is about Matt Kemp, Jon Broxton, Eric Gagne, Chad Billingsley, James Loney, Clayton Kershaw, Casey Blake, Rafael Furcal, Andre Ethier, Russell Martin and all the rest of the boys.”

    “This is a Dodgers Zone!

    Nothing else!”

    Therefore, Rory is absolutely correct when he says, “Why did you do this? I thought you were not going to allow political crap to be disbursed in here.”

    Even more disturbing is that it was written in the same thread in which you state emphatically that “This is a Dodger Zone!” What position does Obama play?

    And I don’t come to this blog to hear anyone’s rantings about tax policy/philosophy. I can get that elsewhere. Fact is, I read the news BEFORE going to the sports page. I even read non-sports related books. Oh, I also just gloss over the legal rantings posted on this site. I hear enough spin on the news, no need for me to get anymore here.

  16. Mark Timmons says:

    But, I digress…

    How about them Dodgers?

  17. Rory says:

    Divorce brings out the best in people – don’t you think?

  18. lawdog says:

    “A Shot of Haeger” has hit on something I’ve suspected for at least last year. Torre doesn’t trust knuckleball pitchers for whatever reason! Haeger deserved a real shot last season after pitching lights out at AAA. When he came up, he continued the string of top quality starts–just long enough to get shut down by Joe after pitching 2 bad innings in his 3rd start.

    I think Haeger is actually a #2 pitcher. Put him in as our #5 and watch him go 16-4 with an era around 3.15.

    But as long as Torre is our manager, he probably won’t give Haeger a shot at anything more than long relief, and that only after his mop up geezers have proven faulty.

  19. A Shot of Haeger says:

    I’m a big Torre fan… I think he’s perfect for THIS team… at THIS time…. but I agree with lawdog about Haeger… I think the homerun Wakefield gave up to Boone in the ALCS and the fact that the Yankees actually hit Wakefield pretty well throughout his long career sticks with him…. makes him a little apprehensive.

    It’s hard to put your trust in something with such a small sample size to evaluate from, like a knuckleball pitcher. Deviating from the norm is difficult for people, especially professional coaches and managers, when repitition is the key to success. I’m not making excuses…but while I unequivicably don’t agree with Torre not giving Haeger the 5th starting spot straight out, I can see the reasons why he might be reticent.

    If Haeger is as good as lawdog says he is… then he should be the guy.

    I don’t agree that Haeger is a #2 pitcher yet.. He might have #2 stuff..but until he gets opportunity to pitch on a consistent basis…he’s a 5 for me with a very good chance of improvement. Hopefully he gets that chance this season with us.

    Billingsley and Kershaw have #1 stuff, but they aren’t #1′s yet…though they could eventually be.

    Kuroda is a 3 with #3 stuff

    Padilla is a 4 with #3 stuff

  20. lawdog says:

    The prejudice against knuckleball pitchers is understandable. It’s the world’s most difficult pitch to throw and most pitchers sporting one don’t become effective until after their 30th birthday. No matter how well you throw it, occasionally you will “spin ‘ one and it will be hit into the seats for a home run.
    It’s also hard to throw it consistently for a strike, and most knuckleballers walk a lot of batters which is not a good thing if you tend to throw home runs.

    But this Haeger kid is special. He has control of the dancer and isn’t afraid to come in with a heater now and then as a change up. I think Torre expects him to fail, and when he gives up a a walk or two or a home run, he sits him down for the rest of the year.

    Haeger is better than that. And he might be just what we need to make it into the world series this year–if only he’s given a real chance to prove himself. Haeger has earned a real shot. I hope Torre gives him one.

  21. Rory says:

    I haven’t seen enough of Haeger to KNOW anything, but what I did see was impressive. He got people out. And he did it with a pitch that hardly anyone sees anymore, a pitch that is hard to control, and he seemed to control it. Last year he had 1.05 WHIP. For a knuckleball pitcher? Granted it was limited innings but if I am Torre I am saying “show me that again”.

  22. lawdog says:

    It doesn’t matter if you are pitching to high schoolers or MLBers. If you can get the dancer over for a strike withoiut any rotation what so ever, no one will hit you. That’s where Haeger is right now. He was probably the best pitcher in AAA last season and he continued his success when he was called up–except for two bad innings which ended his chance last season.

    The knuckleball is still the hardest pitch to hit in the game.

    If you can throw one that has no rotation at all for a strike you are a success waiting to happen at whatever level you are playing.

    Haeger is there. HAS BEEN SINCE LAST SEASON.

    WILL HE GET A CHANCE TO PROVE HIMSELF? PROBABLY NOT WITH TORRE MANAGING. Torre is too tuned in to what can go wrong when your dancer doesn’t dance over the plate.

  23. Roger Dodger says:

    Mark, I have been trying to send you a message all day, but my sending out deal on AOL is having a breakdown. I am waiting for my turn on the phone with them as I type. Have the first film and pics to send.

    Have the new camera and zoom lens now (Nikon D300s // 70-300 zoom).

    Key for Dodgers now, with the total roster they have in camp — no serious injuries. Just good solid workouts and drills.

  24. A Shot of Haeger says:

    Lawdog said:

    Haeger is there. HAS BEEN SINCE LAST SEASON.

    WILL HE GET A CHANCE TO PROVE HIMSELF? PROBABLY NOT WITH TORRE MANAGING. Torre is too tuned in to what can go wrong when your dancer doesn’t dance over the plate.

    I pray that you are wrong… if the McCourts are about money, an effective Haeger is a goldmine. I’d pay to see him pitch

  25. Bootz says:

    Here here!

  26. Bill Russell says:

    The problem I see with Knuckleballers is that they can’t hold base runners very well and make it very difficult for catchers handling the pitch and setting up to make the throw to second or third. Not to mention the fact that it takes longer for a knuckleball to arrive home then say a fastball. That automatically makes it a problem when someone is walked or gets a single off the knuckleball pitcher. Maybe this is why Joe will try any other option first before awarding Charlie a rotation spot. Boone just showed what happens when the knuckleball doesn’t knuckle.

    I enjoy watching a good knuckleball pitcher pitch but I’d personally rather watch them on the other team. That’s just my take and I bet it’s Joe’s as well.

  27. Rory says:

    I am not as worried about holding runners as much as I am impressed with an ERA under 4. Keep the other team from scoring and you give yourself opportunity to win. If Haeger can pitch an entire year the way he pitched in August and September of last year we would be stupid not to give him a shot at it. Why not? It’s not like we have a stronger candidate right now. Who else on this team did what Haeger did? And he did it in a pennant drive. If he gets bombed in Spring Training, then ok, his success last year was an aberration. But to not at least give him a fair chance is just silly.

  28. Harold says:

    Every young fireball pitcher doesn’t become a Koufax or a Clemens. But, everyone is given that opportunity to try it seems.

    Why not give Charlie Haegar a shot? His predecessors with the knuckler include Wilbur Wood (164 W, 3.24 ERA), Charlie Hough (216 W, 3.75 ERA), Hoyt Wilhelm (143 W, 2.52 ERA), Tim Wakefield 189 W, 4.33 ERA), Phil Neikro (318 W, 3.35 ERA), Joe Neikro (221 W, 3.59 ERA), Tom Candiotti (151 W, 3.73 ERA). Wakefield is the only one with an unseemly ERA and he sticks around forever.

    That is not to say Charlie Haegar will match those guys but he should be given the opportunity this year. He is out of options. His endorsement by Charlie Hough is a pretty good one. The knuckler provides a change of pace, virtually no arm injuries, stability on a staff for a number of years. As for holding runners on, it seems to me that is already one of our problems with our staff and would not be compounded by Haegar.

    GO CHARLIE!!

    GO DODGERS!!

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