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Dodgers sale: Dennis Gilbert said to have lined up big money [UPDATED]

November 8, 2011 |  1:02 pm

Baseball executive Dennis Gilbert has lined up at least two significant financial backers for his bid to buy the Dodgers, according to a person familiar with the discussions but not authorized to discuss them.

The backers are Bruce Karsh and Josh Friedman, two of the more prominent money managers in Southern California.

Gilbert declined to comment. Karsh and Friedman did not return messages seeking comment.

[UPDATED 2:37 p.m.: Friedman is not involved with any bid group, according to a colleague who declined to be identified. Neither Friedman nor his company is interested in an ownership share of the Dodgers, the colleague said.]

[UPDATED, 5:42 p.m.: Karsh is not involved with any bid group, according to a business associate who declined to be identified. "He's got no interest in the Dodgers," the associate said.]

Karsh is president of Oaktree Capital Management, based in Los Angeles. Forbes estimated his net worth at $1.6 billion as of last September.

Friedman is founding partner and co-chairman of Canyon Capital Partners, also based in Los Angeles. The company runs a $19-billion hedge fund that Bloomberg called the ninth-most profitable in the world.

Gilbert, currently an executive with the Chicago White Sox and previously an agent for such stars as Barry Bonds, George Brett and Bret Saberhagen, tried last year to buy the Texas Rangers. Gilbert, who has front-row seats at Dodger Stadium, helped build a youth baseball field at Southwest College and holds an annual gala benefiting baseball scouts.

-- Bill Shaikin