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MLB: Dodgers' financial woes are Frank McCourt's making

With the Dodgers facing the prospect of being unable to meet the May 31 payroll and owner Frank McCourt embarking on a media tour in which he has reiterated the Dodgers' financial problems would be solved if Commissioner Bud Selig would immediately approve of a $3-billion television contract with Fox, the commissioner's point man on the Dodgers' matter shot back on Wednesday.

Fabforum "Any financial problems faced by the Los Angeles Dodgers are the result of decisions made by Mr. McCourt and his management team over a period of years," MLB executive vice president Rob Manfred said in a statement.

McCourt also has said he has offered full cooperation into Selig's investigation into the Dodgers' finances so that the commissioner can expedite the probe.

"The pace of the commissioner's investigation has been adversely affected by the Dodgers' failure to produce documents in a timely manner and by the complexity of the financial structures surrounding the club," Manfred said. "The commissioner intends to complete the investigation promptly but will not accept less than a thorough investigation."

Earlier Wednesday, McCourt sent a letter asking for immediate approval of the Fox deal.

"The commissioner's continued delay and his conscious decision to put the Dodgers into a state of distress and make it a matter of public discussion is harming Mr. McCourt and the Dodgers," read the letter, signed by attorney Robert Sacks.

The letter, which was read to The Times, also said: "The press now is discussing the Dodgers' ability to make its payroll at the end of May. There would be no issue whatsoever about that issue -- or any other issue involving the Dodgers' financial strength and viability -- had the commissioner timely acted on Mr. McCourt's request for approval of the Fox transaction or were he to approve it now."

Manfred and Dodgers trustee Tom Schieffer met Wednesday in the commissioner's office in Milwaukee.

RELATED:

The world against Frank McCourt

Pushed into a corner, Frank McCourt vows to fight on

-- Bill Shaikin

Photo: Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt attends the game against the San Diego Padres on April 29, 2011 at Dodger Stadium. Credit: Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

 
Comments () | Archives (43)

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Frank = toast.

Frank's out of cash for sure, but why?

The Dodgers are one of the most storied franchises in all of Sports, within a city that continues to support it regardless of the team fielded. Where did all the money go, and how do you kill the closest thing to a golden goose of sports?

Increased tickets across the board, increase parking prices, increase food prices, increased tv revenue, and with the 11th largest payroll in the majors -( behind Minnesota, my god), and he can't make payroll!

That takes serious talent.

Its sad that I am rooting for the downfall of the dodgers if it means McCourt is gone sooner. But with all the lawsuits he is going to bring this could be a very painful separation

Frank has mortgaged everything ... so the joke is going to be on Jamie and the "new ownership" when they find out that there is no equity in anything except the name.

PS, dodger fans absolutely deserve this!

how you ask?
by standing in your seats and cheering for Manny on his return from suspension
by paying for his $15.00 parking - WILLINGLY
by not complaining about the thugs running wild in the pavilion
by sucking down the Blue Koolaid and filling the stadium, irregardless of the crappy products Frank was selling you
and last but not least, by buying Manny Wigs!

If Selig were to approve the Fox deal what's to stop McCrook from diverting those funds away from the team and into his collection of Malibu mansions? Sorry Frank but we know how you do business.

McCourt's a broken record. The only way you can pay the current year's payroll is to borrow against future earnings? Please. Call it like it is, Frank. You pillaged the Dodgers as far as you could take it and now you have to pay. It's a good thing you were too blinded by greed to just settle with Jamie when all this stuff started and you could've kept the team. Now Dodgers fans can rejoice when you get kicked to the curb. I'll be at that first game post-McCourt and not one game earlier.

He still has 2 years on the current TV contract. Where is the money ? Get out of town, McCourt.

Swung on and missed.......STRIKE THREE

The solution is simple: fire the current roster and bring in cheap players from Asia, just like any other rich jerk would do with any other business.

The sooner MLB takes the Dodgers the better!

McBankrupt has been making the rounds on the local radio and TV shows and he just sounds more and more pathetic. If he was a sympathetic character, I might feel bad but I don't. All this couldn't have happened to a more deserving guy.

In all the interviews, he always talks about this FOX deal and how it's MLB's fault the Dodgers are in financial straits. NO FRANK IT'S YOUR FAULT.

Frank made all of his problems himself. There is nobody else to blame.

McCourt's defense is now "I should have spoken sooner and all the fans would have been on my side" which should read as "I should run a more effective PR campaign and no one would have known just how much I have stripped the club." Good ol McCourt, no problem is too big for an effective PR campaign to solve......

These are the worst of times and the worst of times.

This to me looks like a face off. It seems like MLB will wait to see if McCourt will somehow come up with the money needed for the end of this month's payroll. I have a feeling McCourt will not make any effort at all to that and will wait to see what the MLB's next move will be.

Go away, Frank.

I still have the L.A. Times Sandy Koufax perfect game sports section proudly hanging in my office. Those were the days.
I went to the home opener last year and felt I was one of the few unarmed in the parking lot.
I miss going to the games. However, until McCourt is gone, so am I.

McCourt cannot make the payroll, and here is Steve Lopez on the eerily empty ballpark: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/05/steve-lopez-lots-of-security-few-fans-at-dodger-stadium.html

Mr. Dilbeck, I would like your predecessor, entrenched at happy-talk ESPN , to tell us again that boycotts do not work.

Boycott!

Perhaps now MLB will put integrity first, and glitz second.

Mr. McCourt, do the honorable thing and spare this city any more pain.

Please sell the Dodger's as soon as possible.

For the love of the game.

pssst.......frank

go away frank. just go away.

You know everyone keeps saying Frank McCourt this, Frank McCourt that. What about Jaime McCourt. Why isn't anyone putting the blame on her. We all saw what her spending habits were during their divorce. Maybe she was to blame for everything, but Frank's taking the heat. Sure he should have put his foot down, and wore the pants in the family, but love can be blind. Funny how all of a sudden she hasn't spoke out about the whole debacle.

It's time for the Dodgers to return home, to Brooklyn.

Honestly, California has gone down the drain.

Here is the thing FRANK! he you keep harping about the fox deal and how it would solve the money problems...but here is my thinking...THERE SHOULD HAVE NEVER BEEN MONEY PROBLEMS IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!!!!

WHERE is all the money from the ticket sales, concession stands and and parking revenue??? HUH FRANK? Where is all that money???

You lying sack of turd! You still don't get it do you? NO ONE WANTS YOU HERE!!!!!!!

A team that consistently drew 3 million plus for the past 30 years should not be running out of money.

Frank has been trying to win fans over with a radio/media tour, all it is doing is pissing people off even more. He does not answer questions and keeps refering to Fox deal as his savior! Ok how many teams in MLB need a TV money deal 2 years early to make payroll???? Answer one, the Los Angeles Dodgers!

Frank give it up!

McCourt keeps talking about how getting approval of a new tv contract will solve his problems. HE HAS TWO YEARS LEFT ON THE CURRENT CONTRACT. HE BLEW ALL THAT MONEY THAT WAS SUPPOSED TO LAST AT LEAST TWO MORE YEARS!!! Who is he trying to kid? He's got two years left on a tv contract and he has no money and he's blaming the league??? What an insult to the Commissioner and every single owner in baseball.

Awww...money worries booboo? Flip that coin. HEADS, sell one of the many mansions, TAILS just set here and look pathetic. I can hear the violins in the backgound. No Funds, No Fans, no fun!

Let me get this straight....
Lately, no broadcast entity wanted to cover all the current games since the Dodgers are not a great draw on the airwaves. The games are split up now between Prime Ticket, KCAL, Fox and sometimes others.
The flap now is over broadcast rights for 2013 and beyond (possibly without Vin Scully and therefore damaged goods). Why would somebody pay the $30 million or $13 million as reported - by 2013, they may be worth only $2 million or less if he is borrowing funds from them.
McCourt is saying he needs the advance money from that shaky future broadcast contract just to make payroll this month. Where is the income stream that would normally be paying for salaries this month - it should be the current broadcast rights payments, ticket sales, concessions, parking etc?

Oh I forgot, he mortgaged the future ticket sales.Parking lot and stadium rentals were drawn off into his private comapany as well as much of the concessions I am sure.
How will he pay June salaries if ticket sales, concessions etc. are down. Is he counting on advance payments from the mega million entertainment resort he is expecting to build

Will Manny and Andruw get a rubber checks this month?
Oyyyy

mccourt truly is an idiot. he takes zero responsibility for any of his actions the last several years that seriously damaged the franchise. what a selfish, self-serving twit.

Frank would have made a great Iraqi information minister back during the war. Maybe he was related to that guy because he sure sounds like him.

End of the road Frank, time to go back to Boston and invest in some parking lots.

I will not attend another game until the McCourts are permanently gone.

Haven't we been down this road before? (And we know how that turned out.) If Bud approves the Fox "deal", wouldn't that basically make Fox the de facto owner? I know if I gave somebody 3Bil upfront, I'd want something to say about how it was spent...

The problem is that Frank shouldn't be scrambling to make payroll right now. Most baseball analyst indicate that a team at the start of the season should be flush with cash. They just got the money from the TV sales, all the season ticket holders bought their tickets, concessionaires have purchased their contracts to sell, and contracts for licensing for Dodger gear have been paid. It becomes difficult at the END of the season, like what happened to the Mets last year.

So, where's the money? It was sucked out of the Dodgers via various schemes like having the Dodgers pay rent on Dodger Stadium at a rate of $14 million a year. Even the $14 million is high compared to other teams.

"The commissioner's continued delay and his conscious decision to put the Dodgers into a state of distress and make it a matter of public discussion is harming Mr. McCourt and the Dodgers," read the letter, signed by attorney Robert Sacks.

He could have stricken "commissioner's" and written "McCourt's" instead. This isn't much of a case.

Seize the team now, MLB. Do not let this situation linger any longer. McCourt made some bad decisions and now he has to pay for it. No one is violating your rights, Frank; you've extinguished them yourself.

Mc Court's an idiot for thinking we're going swallow this inane drivel he keeps putting out. Good luck suing MLB, Frank you've got no chance on this one. Who says he can afford the legal fees?
Just shut up & get out of town.

I have been a dodger fan since '77. I have enjoyed the ups and downs through the O'malley ownership and when Fox took over I remained loyal as my friends jumped ship to the Angels. Then came McCourt and I was hopeful once again. Jeez another let down. Dont know how much more me and other blue fans are going to have to take. I'm accually ashamed to admit being a Dodger fan! How sad

Steve,

I heard a report on Bloomberg Radio today that the players union maintains the Dodger players can file for free-agency in the event the team cannot meet payroll.

Manny Ramirez and Frank McCheap have a lot in common. What they brought to LA was solely based on artificial means - Frank's debt and Manny's use of PED's. Once Frank's ability to take on more liabilities ended and once Manny's use of PED's was shut off we've seen what the two of them were truly made of. Simply put, a void. They both lied, cheated and stole.

I've watched the Dodgers since the sixties. I've have the typical caps, t-shirts, etc. I absolutely refuse to advertise the team by wearing any of the gear. That is, until he divests himself of the team. I went to a game earlier this year on gratis tickets and parking. I brought in my food and refused to spend any money at the ballpark. I have great difficulty putting money in McCheap's pockets.

Shameful, truly shameful.

sorry frank, no sympathy here....have fun back in boston!

I am so done with McCourt - and I'm almost done with baseball in L.A. altogether. This is getting comical. Please let Selig have th balls to take over and find a new owner already!

Honestly, if he had any brains whatsover, he would call for an emergency meeting with the Commissioner and just say, "Look, ok, you got me.... Can we just get on with selling this Franchise ASAP, so I can get out of Dodge? I just want to go back home and start a new life"!


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