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Category: Tom Schieffer

Dodgers Web musings: Andre Ethier, you are sports' biggest rising star

Lkabi8nc That’s right, the Dodgers’ own Andre Ethier is not only the hottest thing on the baseball diamond right now, but also the biggest sports star to watch this month.

Anyway, so says a marketing research company that puts out a monthly list it calls "Rising Sports Stars."

Ethier, who at 27 games has baseball’s longest hitting streak in two years, had the biggest lift in popularity last month, according to Brand Affinity Technologies. They base their results on some nebulous formula that looks at media exposure, performance, awards, popularity, engagement and fan base.

Ethier’s rating climbed 136% last month, according to BAT. Before you get too excited, he just squeaked past New Orleans Hornets forward Trevor Ariza’s 135% increase.

Also on the Web:

-- Fox Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi takes a look at Ethier's hitting streak.

-- Joe Torre has been mum on Major League Baseball’s takeover of the Dodgers from Frank McCourt since arriving on the scene with trustee Tom Schieffer last week but earlier confided to’s Mark Newman that Commissioner Bud Selig did confer with him before taking action.

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Dodgers calm in eye of the storm, downing Padres 3-2

Photo: Dodgers shortstop Jamey Carroll can't handle the throw as Padres second baseman Orlando Hudson slides safely into second base with a steal on Friday night at Dodger Stadium. Credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times Before the game, a relaxed Tom Schieffer, MLB's monitor of the Dodgers' baseball operations, sat in the stands and chatted up a few members of the media, while upstairs owner Frank McCourt’s unexpected traveling media show finally landed in Los Angeles.

McCourt conducted a series of mostly scheduled interviews. Later during the game, a desperate-looking McCourt went into the right-field pavilion to visit with fans. Later he returned to his regular box seat.

Uncertainty and chaos surrounded the Dodgers, but on the field all was comparative calm. And based on recent history, very familiar.

The Dodgers knocked off the San Diego Padres, 3-2, on Friday night behind some solid defense and solo home runs from Juan Uribe and Matt Kemp, as Andre Ethier doubled to extend his career-high hitting streak to 25 games.

That tied him with Steve Sax, Paul Lo Duca and Willie Davis for the second-longest hitting streak in Dodgers history. Davis also holds the record at 31 games, set in 1969.

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Tom Schieffer has busy first full day: Dodgers make payroll, and he meets with Frank McCourt

Tom-schieffer_300 First full day on the job and already monitor-trustee-overseer-receiver-ambassador Tom Schieffer is showing great progress.

The Dodgers made payroll.

That’s right boys and girls, Andre Ethier and Roger "Peanut Man" Owens can cash their checks.

Schieffer had himself a busy first day, he got an office at Dodger Stadium, met with general manager Ned Colletti, the players -- and Frank McCourt.

"It was a cordial meeting," Schieffer said. "I think everything got off to a good start.

"He obviously would prefer that I wasn’t here. That’s OK with me; I understand that. And I think we can get this done. I think we’ve come a long way in a couple of days here."

McCourt, who had termed Schieffer more a receiver taking over the club than the monitor he was termed by Commissioner Bud Selig, asked Schieffer what his role would be.

"I guess that probably came up," Schieffer said. "He wants to know what I think my role is, and I was trying to explain that I think my role is to be the last check on what’s going on. And trying to study the situation, investigate the situation and try to determine what the facts are. If we can determine what the facts are, then the options I would take would be pretty obvious afterwards."

"There have obviously been some problems here and I’m trying to figure out what those problems are, what they really are -- not rumor, not innuendo -- what the plan is for addressing them.

"Major League Baseball wants this to be the model franchise it’s been in the past."

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Dodgers Web musings: As the McCourt world turns -- what is Jamie's role in potential new TV contract?

Apparently, it’s just never going to be simple. Not in the foreseeable future, anyway. Not as long as Frank and Jamie McCourt still own the Dodgers.

Frank was unexpectedly babbling nonstop to the media in New York and complaining that Commissioner Bud Selig won’t take his call, which The Times’ T.J. Simers found just a wee bit hypocritical.

Frank’s morning complaint on CNBC’s "Squaw Box’’ was that he just couldn’t understand why Selig won’t explain himself. Guess that eight-page letter Selig sent must have been full of blanks.


Now comes word from The Times’ Bill Shaikin that one of the reasons Selig is less than eager to approve the proposed deal with Fox is that Jamie has yet to approve it.

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Frank McCourt reaches out to Tom Schieffer; son Drew McCourt tweets that MLB statement is 'not truthful'

Lkdcn0nc On the morning after Dodgers owner Frank McCourt defiantly vowed that Major League Baseball would not take the team from him, McCourt reached out to Tom Schieffer, the trustee installed by Commissioner Bud Selig to oversee the Dodgers' business and financial operations.

Dodgers Vice Chairman Steve Soboroff said Thursday that McCourt put in a call to Schieffer. Soboroff also said Schieffer would be welcome to use his office at Dodger Stadium on Thursday.

In a news conference Wednesday, two days after Selig appointed him to run the Dodgers, Schieffer said he had yet to speak with McCourt but hoped the two men could "have a nice visit and see what it is he's concerned about."

Meanwhile, Frank's son Drew took to Twitter on Thursday morning, challenging the statement by MLB Executive Vice President Rob Manfred that Frank McCourt was "not accurate" in recounting his Wednesday meeting with Manfred and other MLB officials.

"Recap of meeting with baseball was 100% accurate," Drew McCourt wrote. "Manfred's comment not truthful."

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Schieffer takes charge: Hope there will not be friction with McCourt but it's up to him

Photo: MLBs new monitor for the Dodgers, Tom Schieffer, at his first day on the job in L.A. holds a press conference Wednesday. Credit: Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times
While Frank McCourt was going confrontational in New York, the man assigned to take control of the team by Major League Baseball was trying his best to be diplomatic, which makes sense for a former diplomat.

Still, Tom Schieffer made it clear at a airport hotel news conference Wednesday that baseball is now in charge of the Dodgers.

"The commissioner has the right, under the agreements that we have and in the best interests of baseball, to take control of a franchise when there is difficulty," Schieffer said. "And I think that’s what the commissioner has done and I am his representative."

McCourt said at his news conference in New York that he viewed Schieffer less as a monitor, as MLB described him, and more of a receiver and he would fight losing control.

"I don’t want to get into an argument with Mr. McCourt, a transcontinental argument here," Schieffer said. "I’m just here to help and will be happy to listen to him and evaluate his arguments.

"But we want this franchise to focus on baseball. People don’t want to talk about what’s going on in the front office, they want to know what’s going on with the team."

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Frank McCourt on Dodgers: "Nobody is going to take them away"

Lkc2mxnc Frank McCourt declared war on Major League Baseball on Wednesday, forcefully rejecting what he said was the league's effort to oust him as the Dodgers' owner.

"Nobody handed the Dodgers to me," McCourt said. "Nobody is going to take them away."

In a meeting with baseball officials in New York, McCourt was told that Commissioner Bud Selig had rejected the television contract with Fox that McCourt had presented as the solution to the Dodgers' long-term financial challenges. McCourt said in a subsequent news conference that the contract met with baseball's guidelines -- and in fact had been revised to satisfy the league's concerns -- and that Selig rejected the deal only as a means of forcing him out.

McCourt called the Dodgers' television rights "our asset" and said it was "un-American" that he could not control that asset.

"It is not appropriate for one party's property to be seized by another party," McCourt said, "just because they got divorced or for some arbitrary reason."

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Dodgers trustee to meet with media Wednesday

Tom Tom Schieffer, appointed as the Dodgers' trustee by Commissioner Bud Selig, is scheduled to hold a news conference in Los Angeles on Wednesday.

Dodgers owner Frank McCourt won't be there. McCourt will be in New York to meet with executives from Selig's office, in part for an explanation of exactly what Schieffer's role will be with the Dodgers.

Schieffer, the former president of the Texas Rangers, was appointed Monday by Selig to oversee "the day-to-day operations, business and finances of the Dodgers and all of the franchise's related entities."

He will have approval rights of any expenditure over $5,000.

-- Bill Shaikin

Photo: Thomas Schieffer. Credit: Katsumi Kasahara / AP

If McCourt wasn't hurting, he's not even talking to Fox, he's starting a Dodgers channel; report says new contract offer is 13 years for $1.6 billion

Lk0emrnc Here is a common refrain from Frank McCourt supporters -- yeah, that would be Steve Soboroff -- who keep claiming he’s not broke:

He has a $3-billion, 20-year deal on the table from Fox! Somebody please let the poor man use his big, fat ATM card!

Yeah, well, there are a couple of problems with this make-believe scenario: 1) If McCourt wasn’t broke, he wouldn’t be talking to Fox because the smart thing to do is to start his own channel; 2) Turns out that Fox deal is for more like $1.6 billion over 13 years.

During last spring’s divorce proceedings, it came out that McCourt was eyeing his own Dodgers station, a la the Yankees, where the serious money awaited. This was the big dream and the financially astute road to travel.

Except . . . starting up your own station takes major dinero, which McCourt lacks and cannot get anyone to provide, because his debt ratio has become scary.

That’s the only reason he turned to Fox, his favorite patsy. He had no other choice. Fox loves giving to McCourt. It’s like a sickness. They should have their own special rehab facility.

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Bud Selig 'grateful' that Tom Schieffer has agreed to oversee Dodgers

Photo: In a 1996 photo, Texas Rangers President Tom Schieffer sprays Champagne on the field and at his players as they celebrate their American League West title. Credit: Jon Freilich / Associated Press Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig confirmed Monday that Tom Schieffer will oversee the Dodgers, calling the former Texas Rangers president a "monitor" responsible for the club's business and finance operations.

In his statement, Selig noted that Schieffer would oversee the Dodgers and "all of the franchise's related entities." Owner Frank McCourt has separated the Dodgers as a business entity from Dodger Stadium and the surrounding land, but he has funneled revenues generated by the Dodgers toward those other entities.

Selig's statement: 

Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig announced today that he has appointed J. Thomas Schieffer, the former president of the Texas Rangers, as the Monitor of the Los Angeles Dodgers franchise.  Schieffer will represent the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball in the oversight of the day-to-day operations, business and finances of the Dodgers and all of the franchise’s related entities.

Schieffer, an investor in the ownership group headed by George W. Bush and Rusty Rose that purchased the Rangers in 1989, was the club president from 1991-1999 and the franchise’s general partner from November 1994 until June 1998.  The Fort Worth native was the club’s partner in charge of ballpark development in advance of the 1994 opening of The Ballpark in Arlington.  The Rangers won their first three American League West titles (1996, 1998-1999) in club history in the years during Schieffer’s tenure. 

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