Categorized | Mark Timmons

The End of the Beginning or the Beginning of the End?

It is widely believed that the Dodgers will not be able to meet payroll by May 31st if the contract with FOX is not approved by Bug Selig.    Will May 31, 2011 be the end of the beginning or the beginning of the end? Frankly, I have never seen the agreement MLB has with its’ owners but I understand that there is a clause wherein an owner agrees not to sue MLB.  While I can’t say that it means nothing – it does mean something – but it doesn’t mean everything.  You frequently cannot just sign away a fiduciary responsibility with a stroke of the pen.  MLB has a responsibility to the Dodgers, but the Dodgers have a responsibility to MLB as well.

On one hand, Frank McCourt can make payroll and the Dodgers will be flush with cash to make deals and improve the club, if Bug approves the deal.  If the deal is approved, the Dodgers will instantly become one of the TOP 5 funded franchises.  On the other hand, what will happen to the money?  Frank says that all of it will go to the team, but the 800 pound gorilla in the room is not Bug Selig – it is Jamie McCourt.  She is sitting there with her hand out.  How can Frank guarantee MLB that all of the money will go to the Dodgers?  Jamie wants her cut too.

On the other hand, is Frank really that much different from other owners?  Frank’s greed and decadent lifestyle (most likely fueled by Jamie) is not unlike the greed of the Mets’ owners who took leave of their senses and invested hundreds of millions with Bernie Madoof with the promise of obscene returns.  Hey morons, If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is!”

For those of you who think Bug has thought this through, let me remind you that he  was part of the owners’ collusion in 1985–1987, resulting in the owners paying $280 million in damages to the players. By the way, that’s $539 million in 2011 dollars!  Frank has been sued, but he’s never lost a $539 million judgment!  Bug does not exactly inspire confidence in me, if you know what I mean.

Right now, MLB is investigating the Dodgers.  Frank says they won’t find anything.  MLB says Frank is slow in handing over documents.  Frank says that if MLB approves his deal, the payroll will be easily met.  I see both arguments.  If I were an attorney, I could argue either sides points… and possibly win!  The thing is, you just never know what will happen in court.

I do know that many Dodger fans are staying away from the ballpark.  I also believe that the distraction is hurting the team.  Sure, they know that MLB will step in and pay them if Frank can’t, but it’s still a big distraction.    This team has been decimated by injuries, but if healthy, this team is much better than they have shown.  This is a distraction to Ned, to Donnie, to all the coaches and to the players.  I think what MLB finds between now and May 31st will determine the course of action they will take.

Here’s what I see happening:  If Frank doesn’t sue MLB before May 31st, MLB will seize the Dodgers on that date and force a sale.  Frank may win or Frank may lose, but he might very well be left out in the cold.  I do think that Bug can force him out, and that’s probably the best course of action for Dodger fans,  The billion-dollar-question is:  Is MLB able to pay a billion dollar judgment?  I’m not saying they will lose, but that possibility does exist.

About Mark Timmons

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

22 Responses to “The End of the Beginning or the Beginning of the End?”

  1. AnewBlueDay says:

    My local newspaper here in Texas this morning had the lead sports article – bold headlines that the L.A. Dodgers are broke and cannot make payroll.

    So, I will be asked by my baseball friends “What is going on with your team?”

    The only answer I can give is — “We are trying to get the owner out! Fan attendance is down, and we do not like this owner, we want the Commissioner to make the way for the Dodgers to be sold to another owner or group.”

    There is really not much other spin to put on this to others or outsiders.

    Now in 3rd place.

    Oh, I did watch the game on delayed MLB TV computer play back yesterday. The only good part was watching some of the great Dodger throws and skipping through the commercial breaks.

    Brooklyn buddy, lets move back to Brooklyn. I understand the gangs back in Brooklyn are not as bad as the ones in L.A.

  2. Badger says:

    What must be considered is the fact that Jamie IS the Dodgers. Well, half of them anyway. Remember, she did win in court. So….. Frankie has to pay her with something, and what he is counting on is the Fox money. That money will go to her, count on it. I know it, you know it, the American people know it and certainly MLB knows it. Arguments between the lawyers will be made, but what cannot be argued is the glaring fact that McCourt is bad for the Dodgers and bad for MLB. He has to go. That has been apparent to most, not all but most, for some time now. The fans are speaking, well not all fans but most of them. Frank might sue, and he will lose. What he needs to do is take what little self respect he has left, admit defeat and do what’s right.

    Anyone believe Frank even knows HOW to do what’s right?

  3. Bill Russell says:

    This sounds like an Oliver North twist with a pinch of Richard Nixon sprinkled in. Frank says “You won’t find nuttin” but is slow in handing over the documents. Let’s hope there isn’t any recorded tapes to go along with the missing documents….. Might we think about what could have been heard on the tapes?

    example: Frank: Well Ned, what shall we do this year? Ned: Not sure Frank, should we try to get Andrew Jones back? Frank: Well Ned, we’ve sailed those waters already. Ned: Well, Ok Frank, but I hear he’s in shape now. – blank missing 20 minutes

    Ned: Should we go to Taco Bell for lunch? Frank: No Ned, I’m thinking Arby’s today.

    Could Frank and his lovely ex-wife lose pretty much everything that they’ve got? Stay tuned…….

  4. the truth hurts says:

    Nothing beats arbys curly fries and the title of this blog is a amazing smashing pumpkins tune.

    That’s all I got.

  5. ThE OrIgInAl GoNzO says:

    One question, so when McCourt(MLB) sells the Dodgers are McCourt’s shady companies going to be sold under one umbrella so the new owner can have everything as one entity? Or can McCourt pull a fast one and sell the land seprately?

  6. ThE OrIgInAl GoNzO says:

    Okay the one question turned to two.

  7. Anyone would be a fool to buy the Team and not the land with it….That’s just asking for trouble….But it does raise a good question…Is McCourt obligated to sell the land?…Interesting…

    This could nasty…I mean real nasty!

  8. AnewBlueDay says:

    This mess is playing out longer than As the World Turns or Search for Tomorrow on the daytime soaps.

    Someone needs to pack this guy out like the Good Wife did on CBS the other night as she packed out her husband.

  9. AnewBlueDay says:

    Just looked at Weisman’s article above (right).

    Now, I really feel terrible. If Ethier is out for awhile with a hurt wing . . . well, this team better have the starters pitch 9 inning shoutouts if the guys want to win a game.

    Mr. Commissioner, please come save this ball club. Please Mr. Commissioner.

  10. AnewBlueDay says:

    I just went outside and looked up — I think the sky is falling.

  11. Gonzo says:

    What is stopping McCourt from walking into Selig’s office and tells him, take the stinkin Dodgers and Dodger Stadium, but I keep Chavez Ravine and will charge the new owner X amount of money for being on my land.

    This is probably a lawyer question. Bobby???

  12. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Sounds to me as if Frank and Jamie could end up with some real money if the team is sold. And chances are that MLB and the other owners want the price to be as high as the market will bear.

    No way the real estate isn’t included in a deal. Frank couldn’t get enough to pay off the debt without including the land, which includes not only Dodger Stadium and the parking lots, but the Dominican properties, Camelback, and whatever else the Dodgers own. And no way MLB would allow the assets to be separated.

    And Badger is correct about Jamie getting her share of the Fox money. Besides, as I’ve noted before, while $3 billion over 17 years sounds like a lot of money, it’s probably below market value. Does anyone really think that Fox didn’t make their offer with the full knowledge that McCourt is under duress. And how much money could be generated by a Dodgers network that was fully funded by a deep-pocketed new Dodgers owner?

  13. Corey says:

    check out this article from cbs.sports. I hope McCourt is taking notes on it! LOL!/mlb/story/15005163/all-we-need-from-mccourt-from-this-day-forward-is-silence

  14. AnewBlueDay says:

    Driving home tonight, there was something lying on the highway ahead of us.

    I slowed down. Inched up to the object, and it was, it was A PIECE OF THE SKY, its color was almost blue. I could tell it used to be deep blue, kind of like a Dodger Blue. But it was now very faint.

    I carefully picked it up — and placed it in the trunk of my car. I will care for it and hope the true color can come back.


  15. Willie Mays says:

    Boo Hoo


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