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Wednesday, August 08, 2012

New free-spending Dodgers owners quickly putting stingy McCourt era in past

Ned Coletti with a suitcase full of cash? This could be good. Jason Schmidt-good.

When the new Dodgers group—led by Mark Walter, Magic Johnson and Stan Kasten—bought the team back in spring training, there were a couple of obvious, positive hints that good things were coming. One was the presence of the iconic Magic, who hasn’t stopped beaming his patented beam since they won the team.

Even better was the record $2.15 billion sale price, which accurately reflected the new group’s interest in owning and running the marquee franchise.

And now, all the sport watches with varying parts admiration, awe and fear as the new group attempts to reinvigorate the once-proud franchise and rule the sport. Their outlook regarding player acquisition is somewhat Steinbrennerian, though not any of the rest of their methods. The combination is proving perfect….

When Lee went on waivers last week, a vast majority of GMs surveyed by CBSSports.com said no one would have the loot and guts to claim him and risk taking a contract that, if accepted, would have committed any claiming team to nearly $30 million a year to an over-30 pitcher with two wins and an ERA close to 4.00. The numbers didn’t seem to add up. Many added, though, that if anyone did make that claim, it would be the Dodgers.

And indeed, it was. And they did.

They didn’t even hesitate. Their scouting reports suggested Lee was still an ace.

In their minds, Lee was next.

Colletti’s previous cost-conscious teams have been known for August pickups, like Marlon Anderson, Ronnie Belliard, Jon Garland, late-career Jim Thome and later-career Greg Maddux. But this was far different. This was a near nine-figure commitment.

Other owners watch with awe, and some with amusement.

“They borrowed $2 billion,” said one competing owner, referring to the insurance monies backing the buy. “So what’s another $100 million?”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 08, 2012 at 12:02 PM | 6 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: adrian gonzalez, cliff lee, dodgers, magic johnson, ned coletti, ownership, phillies, red sox

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   1. phredbird Posted: August 08, 2012 at 03:07 PM (#4203517)
if these acquisitions don't get them over the hump and deep into the playoffs, things could get ugly.

but most of the media keep giving the new ownership the benefit of the doubt. Hollywood reporter with a big article about the new regime in the latest issue. sorry not providing the link, i have to get off btf and back to work.
   2. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 08, 2012 at 03:21 PM (#4203540)
Hollywood Reporter: The New-Look Dodgers: 'We Owe Fans a Winner'

Already, sports-business insiders have speculated whether the Dodgers will score the richest TV deal ever in pro sports. According to a study by independent consultancy Desser Sports Media for THR (see sidebar), should the team follow the path of the Yankees and start its own network, during a 20-year initial term, the Dodgers could generate $8.5 billion in TV revenue. "[The valuation] goes a far distance to explain the actions of various parties," says Ed Desser, who led the study. "There is certainly no question that there is substantial value there."
   3. Joe Kehoskie Posted: August 08, 2012 at 03:35 PM (#4203566)
but most of the media keep giving the new ownership the benefit of the doubt.

They used other people's money to overbid for the Dodgers by ~$600,000,000 *and* allowed McCourt to remain involved. What could go wrong?

(The obligatory snark aside, that deal Selig cut with McCourt to avoid taking the witness stand could come back to haunt MLB. Other owners are going to be furious if the Dodgers are allowed to exempt a big chunk of their TV billions from revenue sharing, as is the persistent rumor.)
   4. dr. scott Posted: August 08, 2012 at 08:20 PM (#4203847)
Im hoping the Dodgers spend tons of money... I here Zito will be available soon. And Alphonso would look fantastic in Dodger Blue.
   5. SouthSideRyan Posted: August 08, 2012 at 10:57 PM (#4203939)
The 2nd Dodgers bankruptcy is going to be even more hilarious than the first.
   6. phredbird Posted: August 09, 2012 at 10:47 AM (#4204224)
see, i don't have a retort to any of these comments, because to my jaded point of view, they aren't far off the mark. i've mentioned this before in other threads. bud does NOT want strong solvent ownership in a big market like LA. (luxury tax is his way of reining in NY, as YR constantly reminds us. i realize it only slows them down, but bud is the type who'll take what he can get until he sees his chance to better his position.)

no doubt the guggenheim gang will recoup a lot of their investment with the TV contract, but that still leaves them with that messy leftover relationship with mccourt. further, there doesn't seem to be one managing partner who calls the shots. walter looks uninterested in throwing his weight around, and stan kasten, for all his baseball savvy (you nats fans can poke holes in that i'm sure) does not act like anything more than an upper level executive following orders. and magic johnson is just a PR face.

there were several strong ownership candidates who could have bought the dodgers outright and even paid off mccourt.

frankly (no pun intended) i think selig would have been happy with mccourt as owner indefinitely if not for the public mess the mccourts made when they divorced. mccourt was leveraged to the hilt, so he didn't have the necessaries to act like walter o'malley. but when his skimming was made public bud had no choice but to act all indignant and go find some other chump to bid up the worth of the franchise.

Other owners are going to be furious if the Dodgers are allowed to exempt a big chunk of their TV billions from revenue sharing, as is the persistent rumor.


i'm sure bud has some horses to trade on that score. but i'm just a poster on a baseball thread, so can't speak to what wheels are turning in his head.

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