In a bankruptcy-court filing, Major League Baseball has asked the Delaware judge overseeing matters to force Frank McCourt to sell the Los Angeles Dodgers and related assets — or else MLB will seize the team post-bankruptcy.
“Mr. McCourt cannot hide the Dodgers in bankruptcy forever,” the filing read.
The Los Angeles Times reported on the move, which is fairly aggressive. In the filing, attorneys said they did not foresee a situation where MLB would approve a media-rights deal that would solve the Dodgers’ financial issues, but at a high cost — some of the proceeds would be diverted to McCourt’s personal accounts and used to settle his divorce with Jamie McCourt. With the team lacking the financial wherewithal to continue, MLB would seize the franchise and its assets, including Dodger Stadium.
For McCourt’s attorneys, the issue is simple: a front-loaded media deal after an auction bails out the team. In a response to MLB’s motion, McCourt’s attorneys say liquidation is a last resort and should not be ordered if there’s a viable solution to the team’s financial issues.
As we noted, the filing is pretty aggressive. Whether it works remains to be seen: bankruptcy judges tend to give the benefit of the doubt to firms seeking to clean up their financial issues in full, and whether or not you think Frank McCourt has acted in a financially prudent way, a media-rights sale would indeed fully settle a lot of accounts — which is the whole point of bankruptcy protection.
RELATED STORIES: Weirdness bubbles to surface in Dodgers bankruptcy; Dodgers attendance woes could cost team $27 million; Judge: Dodgers must accept MLB loan; MLB: McCourt not acting in best interests of Dodgers; Dodgers: Selig was unfair toward us; McCourt files for bankruptcy on Dodgers, Dodger Stadium; Selig: No to proposed Fox/Dodgers TV deal; McCourts reach tentative divorce agreement, allowing Frank to keep Dodgers — maybe; Could McCourt lose Dodgers and keep Dodger Stadium?; Gloves are off for McCourt: Selig has no right seizing Dodgers; Schieffer new Dodgers monitor; McCourt response to Selig: strong words, no lawsuit; Selig seizes Dodgers from McCourt; Stow still in critical condition; No arrests at Dodger Stadium with new security system in place; Dodgers scrap half-price drink promotion; All quiet at AT&T Park last night; Security tight for tonight at AT&T Park Dodgers-Giants tilt; Dodgers up security; will it be enough?; Giants fan severely beaten in Dodger Stadium parking lot; suspects sought; Selig shoots down Fox loan to Dodgers; Messy McCourt divorce takes another turn
Share your news with the baseball community. Send it to us at email@example.com.
Subscribers to the weekly Ballpark Digest newsletter see features before they’re posted to the site. You can sign up for a free subscription at the Newsletter Signup Page.