Dodgers sold, O’Malley looks at Padres

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.

16 thoughts on “Dodgers sold, O’Malley looks at Padres

  1. While groups come forward to buy the Dodgers and Padres, we’re still awaiting the identities of the so-called two groups ready to buy the A’s and build in Oakland.

  2. @ pjk – “we’re still awaiting the identities of the so-called two groups ready to buy the A’s and build in Oakland.” There probably aren’t any. It’s probably rumors and speculation. After all, Oakland pales in comparison to SJ’s potential, right?. From what I understand Wolff is not even remotely interested in selling so what does it matter anyway? Even if there were interested parties, one cannot buy something that is not for sale. With the recent Dodgers price tag and potential Padres sale price, who knows what Wolff would ask for the A’s even if he did think about selling? Like you repeatedly say, the new owners would have to come out of pocket to build a new stadium so it probably doesn’t make sense for a new owner in Oakland for the lack of a “corporate base” and “premium seat” sales that is often reiterated here; and also thanks to the circumstances that have transpired over the past decade or more. Wolff wants SJ no matter what and he’s not selling to anyone. Plus his frat buddy is in charge of all of this. The deck is stacked in favor of SJ. The Giants aside, the vibe could not be more in favor of SJ in your wildest dreams. He’s not getting any younger and he most likely wants to build a legacy for himself. SJ will most likely become a major league city after all. At least that’s what I believe but I could be wrong as I often am.

  3. Re: your last point in the blog post:

    The broader lesson is that very rich people have a very soft landing from the problems and sins that would torpedo the lives of us normal folk.

  4. Well, some of them. Bernie Madoff will be in prison forever. Michael Jackson got fatally addicted. Britney Spears is a mess. The most glamorous figures of my generation (Princess Diana and John Kennedy Jr.) both died young.

  5. so basically selig is just taking this newer issue and pushing it ahead of the A’s.

  6. @Baycommuter: But Tupac is still alive and well…

  7. OT: Amy Trask on 95.7 the Game this morning spoke of the Raiders dedication (the need is urgent) to getting a new stadium in Oakland, where it would be centrally located in the Bay Area and has good public transportation. She also mentioned that they do have a very good relationship with the 49ers if they need to go there (paraphrasing). I’ve always felt that the Raiders would be the team to stay in Oakland, there isn’t any reason for them to leave, especially with the 9ers in Santa Clara!

  8. It’s funny that the Oakland Raiders may play closer to San Francisco than the San Francisco 49ers.

  9. It’s also funny that two very different football franchises can be so cordial while two baseball clubs- not so much.

  10. @RC,
    I’m sure Wolff and company wouldn’t mind being cordial with Baer and company IF THEY WEREN’T SUCH HUGE A$$HOLES!!

  11. The Raiders have the same obstacles in Oakland that the A’s face:
    * No help from taxpayers.
    * No help from the league (the NFL’s already spent its Bay Area stadium allotment in Santa Clara)
    * Weak market for suites, premium seating and sponsorship.

    And the Raiders need $1 billion, not just the $500 million that the A’s would need. Look for the Raiders to wind up back in LA since they won’t want to share a building with the 49ers. And while the Raiders might still like the Dublin site, they’ve already been told no-way, no-how, not-ever by the mayor there. A departure from when cities like Irwindale and Oakland threw $$ at the Raiders to try to get them to play their precious games within their city.

  12. @ pjk- Yeah all valid points. I was kinda holding on to the hope of them sinking half a billion into the Coliseum and making it a respectable football venue should the A’s leave. True, they may never get the premium seating and sponsorship that they could, but with the 49ers so far south, who knows how that plays out, it might not be a total loss. I agree that Dublin is probably a non starter. Are you saying that in LA they might get funding from the NFL, and of course, stronger premium seating and sponsorship, enough to get them a stadium? It seems like such a long shot at this time, but I guess I could see that. Simplicity and momentum (for a change) would seem to favor Oakland at this time, but that may change.

  13. @ Tony D- You know, there is a small chance that the Raiders play in Santa Clara for a year or two while they work on getting their own new stadium up in Oakland. Do you think that the Giants would ever help the A’s out in the same way and let them play at AT&T for even a few months? Or how about crappy candlestick? Of course not. Why? Because Baer and the Giants are HUGE A$$HOLES!!!

  14. @RC – Sharing a football stadium has a lot less scheduling issues than sharing a baseball stadium.

  15. @LS, not really. For the most part MLB already does that. It’s rare that they play in the bay area on the same day and even rarer at the same time on the same day. It would probably be easy if they had two games scheduled on the same day to do it as a day/night deal. It would never happen, of course, because the Giants would never allow it, but scheduling wouldn’t be the issue.

  16. RC, well that and the logistics of sharing Pac Bell Park would be impossible to balance and would hinder both teams which is why that would never happen. Candlestick wouldn’t happen for the simple reason that it’s no longer capable of hosting baseball. The old retractable grandstand is no longer capable of moving. Between rust and the engines that used to retract the stand being dead it’s no longer a multipurpose venue.

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