Major League Baseball taking control of Dodgers
April 20th, 2011
09:57 PM ET

Major League Baseball taking control of Dodgers

[Updated at 9:57 p.m. ET] Major League Baseball on Wednesday said it was appointing a representative to oversee the operations of the Los Angeles Dodgers, whose financial struggles have been highlighted during a divorce battle between the team's husband-and-wife co-owners.

"I have taken this action because of my deep concerns regarding the finances and operations of the Dodgers and to protect the best interests of the club, its great fans and all of Major League Baseball," MLB Commissioner Bud Selig said Wednesday. "My office will continue its thorough investigation into the operations and finances of the Dodgers and related entities during the period of Mr. (Frank) McCourt's ownership. I will announce the name of my representative in the next several days.

"The Dodgers have been one of the most prestigious franchises in all of sports, and we owe it to their legion of loyal fans to ensure that this club is being operated properly now and will be guided appropriately in the future."

The league's action follows reports that McCourt has needed to borrow money to meet payroll obligations, would need to pay his wife to become sole owner of the team, and recently met with baseball officials over a proposed TV deal with Fox.

In an e-mail sent to Dodgers employees Wednesday, McCourt asked that they "please continue to conduct business as usual with our complete dedication to the game and our loyal fans."

"Each of you has represented this organization with class, and while this is no doubt a challenging time for all of us, I truly appreciate your efforts," McCourt wrote, according to an MLB.com story on the Dodgers' website.

iReport: "True Blue" fan wants team sold

The Dodgers, who have made the playoffs four out of the seven full seasons under the McCourts' ownership, have started this season with an 8-10 record entering Wednesday night's game against Atlanta.

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Filed under: Baseball • California • Sports
soundoff (101 Responses)
  1. Toad

    Thank you Princess! But Mario is in another castle!

    April 21, 2011 at 11:59 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Dad-Gum

    Wow!!! How did RACE get INJECTED into this article? Seriously people! it is what it is! The takeover of a baseball team, do to poor managment and misappropriation of funds!

    April 21, 2011 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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  4. Albert

    It's time to ship the foreigners back home.

    April 21, 2011 at 6:07 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Joey Ranzenbach

    Definitely a day for the history books. It's too bad to see this all interfere with what should be just a wholesome ball game. McCourt's initial ownership in 2004 consisted of quite a bit of leverage–to the point that baseball officials questioned if the purchase complied with the MLB's rules regarding the level of debt a team should have (a portion of collateral was actually turned over to Fox Entertainment to cancel out some of the acquisition debt less than two years later). In 2009, for instance, the Dodgers paid out roughly $28 million in debt servicing, a payment that's not expected to significantly change until 2013 and that's pending upon an increase in ticket sales that may be tied to ticket price increases.

    For more information, you can check out PrivCo's private company report on the Los Angeles Dodgers here: http://www.privco.com/private-company/los-angeles-dodgers-inc

    May 6, 2011 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Sam NYC

      Well said Joey.

      May 6, 2011 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
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