It’s May Day for Dodgers fans. The Frank McCourt era is officially over, as the sale of the franchise was officially closed today with McCourt selling to Guggenheim Baseball Partners. I’m two hours south right now, yet I can hear a din of cheering. Or maybe that’s the exhaust fan in the kitchen.
McCourt’s still in the mix, thanks to his being part of a joint venture with the parking lots surrounding Dodger Stadium. As for running the franchise in any way, he’s gone. And for that, all of baseball can be grateful.
It was expected that some of the losing bidders would latch onto the new opportunity that was created when Jeff Moorad and Company gave up on buying the Padres from John Moores. The first one has surfaced. According to Ken Rosenthal, it’s former Dodgers owner Peter O’Malley. O’Malley, his family, and others with the money to make the deal happen, have requested to look into the Padres’ finances and are looking to wrap up a deal as early as the All Star Break.
That’s all well and good, but O’Malley should know from experience that Bud Selig is not going to allow the sale of the team to the first guy who shows up with a check. Selig wants a bidding war, and there is buzz that three of four other parties are interested in the team. He wants John Moores to get a little extra for his having to wait. The Padres aren’t going to go broke anytime soon. As crazy as this valuation and sale price bubble is, maybe it’s not so crazy to think that Moores could get $700 million, $800 million, maybe more.
If there’s a lesson to take from the last few years it’s this: If you’re an owner, embroil yourself in a scandal – messy divorce, financial, etc. You’ll make out great in the end.