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Frank McCourt notices the depositions of Bud Selig, other MLB executives

Jul 1, 2011, 8:25 AM EDT

Combination of file photos of MLB commissioner Bud Selig and Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt

One of the questions I keep getting asked by radio hosts and others is how the Dodgers’ bankruptcy differs from that of the Rangers or the Cubs.  My answer is that, unlike those bankruptcies, this is really an adversarial action more than a reorganizational kind of thing.

This is the sort of reason why: Frank McCourt intends to take the depositions of Selig and six other Major League Baseball executives in the next couple of weeks. The purpose: to establish that it was baseball’s intent to whack McCourt and seize the Dodgers all along.*

And hell, maybe it was. Guess they’ll have to ask Selig about it.  What I can’t understand, however, is the direct significance this would have on the bankruptcy. By the filing itself, McCourt is admitting he can’t pay his bills. While it’s possible that he’ll convince someone that baseball was out to get him, in the end, the court is there to determine what is in the best interests of the Dodgers’ creditors, not who was more righteous in the leadup to last week’s filing.

Or am I missing something here?


*Pfun Pfact: McCourt’s lawyers misspelled Bud Selig’s real first name — Allan — three times on the depo notice. That’s some fine lawyerin’ there, Lou.

  1. gray10k - Jul 1, 2011 at 8:39 AM

    Answer: MLB’s alleged agenda is relevant to the court because MLB refused to approve a good faith offer which would provide cash flow to the team to pay creditors. As a result the Dodgers cannot pay their bills. It is not a debate of assets versus debt it is an issue of cash flow versus payables. If the rules imposed by MLB are too stringent and have the effect of interfering with the payments to other creditors, the bankruptcy court can remove and suspend them. Look, bankruptcy courts have immense power. See the cases where they have clawed back money paid out in good faith to vendors and creditor dating 24 months prior to bankruptcy in many cases. As the owner he is entitled to take draws and use the money of the company, that is right and from the way it looks MLB might get a team with no stadium, merchandise or broadcast rights since they approved a separation for which MLB no longer holds any contractual control over.

  2. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jul 1, 2011 at 9:14 AM

    The Vegas Dodgers? Seriously, rather than shatter the organization by seizing the team but not the stadium, parking, vendors etc, could MLB seize the team and move them? Maybe the Dodgers can move to San Jose and the As can work out a deal with McCourt to buy his then empty stadium and parking lots on the cheap.

  3. lar @ wezen-ball - Jul 1, 2011 at 9:23 AM

    Maybe it’s just me, Craig, but you should probably make a note that “notices the depositions of Bud Selig, etc” is a legal phrase. I thought you were being sarcastic at first, saying that McCourt had pretended to ignore Bud Selig and was just now “noticing” some statements for the first time…

  4. cur68 - Jul 1, 2011 at 9:39 AM

    Well now. THIS is shaping up to drag this out for years, isn’t it? The whole mess makes by ulcers bleed. More I see of this hairball, the less enthused I am about Allan ‘Air Bud’ Selig. He got the Dodgers into this mess. He oversaw the creation of a situation where a team that he is ultimately responsible for is going to be without a stadium but beholdin’ to a hostile entity for real estate on which to carry out business. The same real estate that was sold along WITH the team as a package originally to this now hostile, incompetent, morally & fiscally bankrupt entity.

    Way to go ‘Bud’. You really did a great job vetting an owner here. Hey, while you’re at it ‘Bud’ make sure to keep Mark Cuban out of MLB, eh? He’s only rich (unlike McCourt, to whom you happily sold the Dodgers to), knows what he’s doing with a sports franchise (see previous parenthesis), cares about his fan base (you know the drill), and isn’t a friggin debt ridden, charity looting, business-cancer (!).

  5. FC - Jul 1, 2011 at 10:02 AM

    Less Hairball more Hardball. Although one could argue McCourt is playing Hardball after MLB played that Hairball by approving McCourt’s purchase of the team.

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