Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Selig: Why Dodgers Aren't Mets

For one thing, the Dodgers are 16-20, not a lowly 15-20. Half-game difference, baybee!

As for other points, here's MLB Commissioner Bud Selig on ESPN New York radio this morning:

Selig was asked why he approved the deal that sold the Dodgers to McCourt in 2004 in the first place. Ironically, Fox had held controlling interest of the club beforehand.

"I'll tell you what happened. There's a lot of history here, which a lot of people don't seem to understand," Selig said. "There were two other bidders. Fox was anxious to get rid of the team. They were all really anxious. I'll tell you what happened. There were a couple of groups: A group led by Dave Checketts and another group. And for whatever reason, they weren't around at the end, so Fox sold the club to the McCourts and presented them to us. So this idea that we ought to examine ourselves, there was nobody else. We have a long relationship with Fox. There were no other bidders."

It's a little unclear from this whether McCourt was the second group, or whether he was a third group at the end. Either way, according to Selig, McCourt was his only option at that point. Uh huh.

Selig refused to compare the Dodgers' situation with that of the Mets, who are currently looking for a partner to assume minority interest in the franchise. Mets owner Fred Wilpon and president Saul Katz are facing a lawsuit stemming from their involvement with Ponzi schemer Bernard Madoff that could cost the team $1 billion.

"There are enormous complexities in both deals," Selig said. "I've read all these stories that say 'Well, they're really the same.' They're far from the same. Without going into details that haven't been announced, Fred Wilpon and I have been friends for a long time, and I have enormous respect and affection for him. But Fred Wilpon is doing what he should do. He's looking for an economic mechanism that will bring equity into the club: Sheer raw cash to put it in the most candid way. That alone is a huge difference.

"To compare one situation to the other is factually incorrect. I've talked to Fred a lot about it, and I feel very comfortable that we're gonna have a very reasoned economic solution to that problem as opposed to another.

I love that Selig quote. So basically, Selig is treating McCourt differently because (a) Wilpon is seeking equity, while McCourt continues to dive into further debt instruments; and (b) Wilpon is a friend of Selig's, and McCourt is not.

Kinda makes me feel like McCourt (and the Dodgers) aren't sitting at the big boy table at dinnertime. That must explain the tantrums.


Jason said...

The real reason the Dodgers are not the Mets? The color orange.