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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Dodger Press Conferences As Selig Nixes Fox TV Deal

Jon Weisman writing at his day job at Variety has the scoop; apparently, the veto of the Fox TV deal mentioned earlier in the week for $1.3 billion over 13 years came today, rather than last week as I previously understood Dylan Hernandez's tweet from earlier in the day. The veto or approval is contingent on a thorough review of the team's finances, and while there are troubling comments from MLB's appointed monitor Bob Schieffer that McCourt might still be the owner of the Dodgers after all this, I can't imagine this is for anything other than show. Schieffer unfortunately doesn't seem to know what his role will be in all this mess, but I expect that will become clearer as the team's finances become better understood.

McCourt appears to be defiant while asking forgiveness; as he says in Jon's piece,

In a nod to the concerns over how much Dodger revenue he and his now-estranged wife had allocated for personal spending, McCourt said today that the proposed Fox deal would include an immediate payment of $300 million going directly into the Dodgers.

"None of those dollars (would be) used in any personal way," McCourt said.

"I think I made some mistakes. I’m sorry about that, and I’m definitely commited to doing things differently moving forward. ... I think everyone deserves a second chance."

This is a pretty consistent theme we've heard from him since the takeover, and it should be given exactly the same level of credence as a three-year-old who's been caught with his hand in the cookie jar.

Update: Molly Knight:

It's never been more clear the jig is up for Frank McCourt, which is probably why he's so apoplectic right now.
Dylan Hernandez:
MLB VP Rob Manfred issues statement saying McCourt didn't accurately portray what happened in their meeting.
Craig Calcaterra has the full text of MLB's response:
“It is unfortunate that Mr. McCourt felt it necessary to publicize the content of a private meeting. It is even more unfortunate that Mr. McCourt’s public recitation was not accurate. Most fundamental, Commissioner Selig did not ‘veto’ a proposed transaction. Rather, Mr. McCourt was clearly told that the Commissioner would make no decision on any transaction until after his investigation into the Club and its finances is complete so that he can properly evaluate all of the facts and circumstances.

“Equally important, there has been no seizure of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Mr. Scheiffer has been appointed as a monitor, and a multi-page written directive from the Commissioner describing his role has been provided to Mr. McCourt. In our meeting, no one from the Dodgers asked a single, specific question about the terms of the document setting forth the monitor’s role. “Finally, Mr. McCourt is well aware of the basis of Baseball’s investigation and has been provided an eight-page document describing the issues of concern to Major League Baseball.”

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