The McCourt family who pretty much have run the Dodgers into the ground with their financial and organizational mismanagement of the Dodgers have finally decided to sell the team. Really, Frank McCourt, the owner, had no other choice with the number of looming payments he needs to make as part of a divorce settlement with his ex-wife (rumored to be upward of $150 million). In the time that the McCourt’s were running the Dodgers, they had the team in such financial danger that talks of bankruptcy came up last summer, right before Bud Selig was forced to step in and have MLB take over the franchise. Dodger fans were so thrilled with the McCourt’s time as owners, that a group of 50 fans showed up with signs and held a rally celebrating the McCourt’s deciding to sell the team.
So the question then arises as to who may be the new owner. Dallas Mavericks’ (NBA defending champions) owner Mark Cuban came forward and said that he was interested and even offered to buy the Dodgers during their times of financial trouble. While he is still interested in the Dodgers, the current $1 billion price tag seems to be a bit too high for Cuban. Cuban says he is interested in the Dodgers, as long as the price is right. The question is, what is the right price?
Another interested party is former general manager and vice-president of the team, Frank Claire. Mr. Claire has started a group which is looking for a major financial backer, but also includes others with management expertise, including Andy Dolich who has been an executive for a number of professional sport franchises in California.
Former owner Peter O’Malley is also said to be interested in purchasing the team.
A final group is that made up of former Dodger greats including Steve Garvey and Orel Hershiser. This last group has said to be in the works for over two years, and seems to be quite serious about the bidding process.
Major League Baseball (MLB) needs to pre-approve all the groups that are going to bid on the team. They are currently in the process of rushing through this step so that they can get move to the auction stage and actually get the team sold to a new owner. It’ll be curious to see who is approved (Mark Cuban might not be popular with the MLB owners), and to see who actually wins, and how much they end up paying (though we might not find out the actual number).