McCourt Fires Back, Vows To Maintain Control

Dodgers owner Frank McCourt voiced frustration with commissioner Bud Selig and vowed to maintain control of the team at a press conference in New York City this afternoon. McCourt says he and FOX were ready to proceed with a deal worth nearly $300MM only to hear that MLB was vetoing the deal, taking over financial operations and appointing Tom Schieffer as the team trustee. Yet McCourt insists he intends to maintain control of the club.

"Nobody handed the Dodgers to me and nobody's going to take them away,” he said. “I'm not going anywhere."

McCourt says he’s current on all of his payments and has not received any money from MLB, despite a long, public divorce with his wife, Jamie. The Dodgers owner is frustrated not only by Selig’s handling of the proposed deal, but because he hasn't been able to meet with him face to face. 

"I suspect commissioner Selig calls the other 29 owners back when they call," McCourt said.

However, MLB VP Rob Manfred has issued a statement that opposes some of what McCourt said today, according to Bill Shaikin of the LA Times. Manfred says Selig has not vetoed the FOX deal and that McCourt did not ask about Schieffer's role (Twitter links).

Though he admits to having made mistakes and shown poor judgment, McCourt insists that it’s un-American to seize someone else’s property. He asked Dodgers fans for a second chance, insisting that his proposed deal will benefit the Dodgers directly, rather than his personal funds.

“It will give the Dodgers the financial wherewithal to compete at the highest level for years and years to come,” he said. 

McCourt said he hasn’t ruled out legal action against MLB, which took over the Dodgers’ financial operations last week.


83 Responses to McCourt Fires Back, Vows To Maintain Control Leave a Reply

  1. Koufax_legacy 4 years ago

    lol, whatever Frank…you had your chance…..I thought the TV deal with fox was for 3 billion dollars…then it when down to 1.6 billion….now it’s at 300 million……is anyone else noticing this…..no wonder people want this guy gone…by my count 300 million covers the next three years at status quo…that is in no way competing at the top levels financially for “years to come” …. what a joke this clown is!

  2. Gumby65 4 years ago

    Uncle, Frank. Learn to say it.

  3. willl frank mccourt go away dodger fans dont like you got it?

  4. jb226 4 years ago

    “I haven’t taken any money from MLB” in this case is a weasely way of saying “I got it from somewhere else.”

    Frank, you can’t pay your own damn payroll without some outside entity bailing you out (and not out of the goodness of their hearts). Everything else aside, this is a point at which MLB needs to do something. If you want to sue, then sue; I’m not a lawyer and I don’t pretend to know the legalities involved in what MLB is doing. We don’t need to hear about it. Pony up the money (oh you don’t have that do you?), get your lawyers down to the courthouse and see if you’re right. Otherwise back away and start looking for a buyer. Or get your crap in order and see if you can right the ship.

    MLB has every right to nix a deal if they think you’re deliberately not getting the best possible value because of your personal problems. Being advanced money that the TEAM generates because YOU need it now is not a business decision, it is a personal one, and it is right for MLB to tell you hell no. It hurts the team going forward. It hurts the value of the franchise for any potential buyer down the road, which hurts the team going forward if you DO have to sell–which it’s looking more and more like you do.

    I know this is a strange concept to most multi-millionaires, Frank, but try thinking of somebody other than yourself for a change. You getting the hell out of Dodge is the best thing for the Dodgers, the best thing for baseball, and whether you want to admit it or not, it’s the best thing for you too.

    • MLB team owners can’t take the MLB itself to court, it’s in their contract with the league.

      • JTT11 4 years ago

        Actually…..they can on a plethora of different theories many of which fall outside the scope of any contract the league has with the team.
        And he damn well should. The Dodgers are HIS PROPERTY. To do with as he see fit.
        He really doesnt even have to worry about hiring an attorney. All he has to do is file. Fox (aka News Corporation) can easily come into the lawsuit, bankroll it, and allow McCourt to go along for the ride.

  5. Ferrariman 4 years ago

    Give up Franky. You lost your chance.

  6. Bill B. 4 years ago

    You’re on thin ice, Frank and it’s cracking as we speak…

    • JacksTigers 4 years ago

      At first I thought you were saying he’s on meth (street name is ice) and the cracking, well, we all know where that’s going.

      • sherrilltradedooverexperience 4 years ago

        oddly enough an even better analogy.

      • RonWashingtonISinsane 4 years ago

        I feel like Washington will be seriously involved in a conversation like this.

  7. 0bsessions 4 years ago

    McCourt and Trump should form a club for delusional idiots.

  8. JacksTigers 4 years ago

    Why won’t you die!!!! Figurativley.

  9. Seems to me that if the Dodgers aren’t able to meet payroll obligations now they shouldn’t have spent so much on free agents over the winter. Seems like they signed every second tier starter that hit the market. I suppose they were counting on the Fox deal to come through but it shows poor judgement to spend the money before they even had an agreement, much less the money itself. Bud hasn’t said much so far but I have to think that factored in. I think he’s trying like heck to take away the Dodgers from McCourt while trying to find a solution to keep the Wilpon’s in NY. Seems fairly personal to me but I suppose he may know more than we do. Too bad for Dodger fans that this is happening to their team but at least it’s interesting for the rest of us. I had a feeling when he bought the Dodgers that it wasn’t going to end well.

    • thegrayrace 4 years ago

      The Dodgers revenue is certainly high enough to justify their 2011 payroll… and then some. If they are having financial difficulties, it could only be because McCourt has been using the club as his personal bank account.

  10. corey23 4 years ago

    dear lew wolfe, please buy the dodgers and let someone else buy the a’s, kthxbye!

  11. BleedingBlue 4 years ago

    Fool me once…

  12. Payaso 4 years ago

    Dear God, PLEASE GO AWAY FRANK ITS OVER!!!!

  13. Ken In Sac 4 years ago

    Man, I want him gone but I knew his azz would continue the silly stuff.

  14. monkeyspanked 4 years ago

    I’d say it’s un-American to take a storied MLB team like the Dodgers and turn it into a disgrace. Get lost Frank! Bud pulled your card and it’s time to go.

  15. gunsnascar 4 years ago

    I have no feelings 1 way or another about this mcourt mess, but this is still AMERICA and he did buy the team, SO HE OWNS IT. IT IS HIS and technically his wifes also. Good or bad its his to build it up or tear it down. IF he can make his payroll leave him alone. I know that he borrowed money atleast 1 time to make his payroll, but taking his team over bad business practices is sad. Put him on MLB probation not steal his teams control.
    If he owned a mcdonalds and took money from his business who is going to seize his resturant.
    With all that said I thought that he should sell the team 2 years ago over his messy divorce, and It is extremely sad that this is happening to a ultra storied franchise like the dogers.
    IMHO the mets should be seized by MLB also over their mess on the madoff scheme to be fair after all didnt the wilpons take money from their franchise and have to borrow money atleast 1 time to make their payroll.
    Please 1 of you geniouses explain why this is fair.

    • sherrilltradedooverexperience 4 years ago

      He signed a franchise agreement. He owns the dodgers as a franchisee, the franchisor being MLB. He is not the sole proprietor of the dodgers (as in owning it all by his lonesome). So your argument is shortcircuited from the first sentence onward.

      But, here’s in a nutshell why it is fair. Just because McCourt made some poor personal decisions all the other 29 teams are now possibly affected that are trying to sell television rights and all of that. The dodgers signing for cheap affects every contract after that. MLB is trying to stop something bad like that from happening.

      Does this make sense?

      • gunsnascar 4 years ago

        yes it does make some sense and thanks for the reply

        Doesnt all of this tv rights stuff have to be approved by mlb.
        I see a loan as something different, who is to say that his friend isnt the owner of fox network and it is a bridge loan untill his tv rights agreement is approved by mlb?

        • sherrilltradedooverexperience 4 years ago

          If you take out tons of loans on an asset, the asset in this case being the dodgers team, it will start to lose overall value to potential buyers because of how much is owed on that asset.

          This is because a potential buyer is not prepared to pay ‘full price’ (wants a discount) when the asset has obligations/debts that are more than usual for a business of that size/type.

          McCourt has so little equity left in the asset (he’s borrowed so much money against the dodgers) that it’s affecting the valuation of that team, which in turn affects the value of other teams, albeit indirectly.

          This is not the only way the McCourt’s are affecting the dodgers’ value by their behavior/misbehavior. When the unfortunate incident where the giants fan got severely beaten, and McCourt had just happened to fire head of security because of his financial foolishness, the team loses ‘good will’ value. It’s totally subjective but it’s roughly the good karma or reputation associated with a business entity. That has value. The McCourts are unfortunately trashing the dodgers good name/good vibrations/positive feelings of general public towards the brand…which is kind of hard to do for this type of business( sports franchise ). People pay less for damaged goods.

          • JTT11 4 years ago

            Ticket sales would say otherwise. Sales are down, but they are well within the standard deviation for a team that did not make the playoffs the previous year.
            I dont see any damage that wouldnt normally be expected.

  16. What kind of miserable crooked jerk do you have to be to have your team seized by a Commissioner who let Jeffrey Loria own two different teams?

  17. Let me tell you why Frank Mccourt lost control of the Dodgers.

    He wasn’t loaned $200MM by the MLB, it was loaned to him by FOX. You know what he used as collateral?

    The Dodgers’ cable rights.

    That’s right, an MLB owner has signed away money from the second largest media market to an entity that is not Major League Baseball …End of line, he’s fired. No two ways about it, you get fired when you pull that kind of stunt. MLB will step in and pay off FOX to get their cable rights back and McCourt is out of a job.

    …Though that $200MM loan is only covering HALF of the money he lost in the divorce.

    • gunsnascar 4 years ago

      Thanks I knew I was missing something in this story line.
      Is there any more?
      So the real foul is that the loan was not mlb approved?
      A loan with the cable rights as collateral hurts the team how, if he repays the loan?

      • I think the loan wasn’t approved by FOX because of MLB’s interference with the Dodgers organization. McCourt lost the team before things went through.

        But… Again, if you’re losing a media market like LA, you have no choice but to fire someone. In the end, while the Dodgers are McCourt’s property, he’s still an employee of Major League Baseball and subject to the decisions of the commissioner if he does something to signifcantly damage the league.

      • And if he repays the loan, it doesn’t hurt the team.

        If he defaults on the loan (and trying to pay back a $200MM dollar loan when you’re $400MM in the hole is a pretty safe bet on defaulting) then MLB loses its broadcast rights of the Dodgers, effectively losing their market share in the greater Los Angeles area.

        …Do you realize how big that market is? How much money is being lost by the league? There was no choice but to give Frankie the boot.

      • The problem is, McCourt doesn’t repay loans. Fox originally loaned him money to buy the Dodgers, and he defaulted on that loan. It makes me wonder why Fox would even consider loaning this deadbeat more money.

    • sherrilltradedooverexperience 4 years ago

      Do I remember correctly the LATimes saying that the collateral was actually an assigned right of a judgment against his lawyers that drafted his marital property agreement? I kind of remember a quote that is to the effect that some unnamed source says no real accountant would dare claim that on their balance sheet, much less use it as collateral for a loan.

      • I remember it as McCourt asking Fox for 200 million dollars for a loan (MLB wouldn’t do it) and he put up the Dodger’s broadcast rights as his collateral.

        …He also was saying he had a 3 billion dollar cable deal that was later revealed to be 1.6 and all I can safely say is Frank McCourt is full of crap and I’m glad he’s not able to do any more damage to the team.

        • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

          Also, wasn’t there an issue of McCourt circumventing Selig’s ruling by accepting a smaller personal loan from FOX?

      • BlueSkyLA 4 years ago

        That was the $30m personal loan, supposedly “secured” against a law suit. In reality it’s secured against McCourt’s personal assets — meaning, you know what.

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      I thought the $200 mil was an advance on a deal that was set to kick in down the road between FOX and the Dodgers. I definetly feel that McCourt’s finances are shakey but he is being strong armed here.

      I heard the real reason Selig made the move was because McCourt was being investigated by the IRS because he took money from the Dodgers and didn’t report it or pay taxes on it.

      From what I thought I heard Selig didn’t nix the deal for any other reason than because Selig wanted to wait until all his finances and the IRS situation is investigated thouroughly.

      • BlueSkyLA 4 years ago

        I have not heard that. Selig can draw from a long laundry list of complaints about the McCourts and their financial handling of the Dodgers, much of which came to light in the divorce court filings. The $200m advance from Fox was part of a pattern of encumbering future revenues. When those media rights come up again, they should be put out to bid to maximize their value. Better yet, the Dodgers should set up their own cable network, as other teams have done.

      • I think you are right, the $200M was to be borrowed against future broadcasting rights. But wouldn’t that kind of “lock in” Fox as the only network that the Dodgers will be able to deal with?

  18. gunsnascar 4 years ago

    I am gratefull for the info from all of you guys and Im sorry for the geniouses crack.

    So if mlb would have loaned him the money he wouldnt necessarily be in this mess?
    So why the heck will they loan the wilpons money then. Was it the size of the loan?
    200 mil is alot more than I think it was 25 mil that the wilpons got from mlb to make their payroll.

  19. gunsnascar 4 years ago

    IMHO they should make him sell 51% atleast to balance his debts and his divorce settlement. I think that the dodgers franchise is worth atleast 1 billion dollars 51% is 501 million atleast. With that he could repay fox network and payoff his gold digging wife.
    Does that make sense.

  20. bomberj11 4 years ago

    At this point his rambling isn’t even listened to by people. He’s kind of like that homeless person telling everyone that the world’s going to end, but no one listens to him because he’s an idiot.

  21. vtadave 4 years ago

    As a Dodgers fan of 33 years, I can’t wait for Frank to ask me for a “second chance”. He didn’t even deserve a first chance, so I am guessing a second one will not be granted, either by MLB or by the fans.

    What’s he going to do? Free Dodger dog day? Lower parking from $15 to $14 for a one-month period? The mind cannot comprehend.

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      In terms of keeping the team competitive McCourt hasn’t been a bad owner has he?

      • vtadave 4 years ago

        In terms of doing the bare minimum to keep the team competitive, sure.

        But you’re a smart guy – you know the success of the team was built upon the foundation laid by Logan White and one lucky trade (Bradley for some Double-A prospect named Ethier) by Colletti.

        • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

          What I meant was that while they haven’t signed MAJOR free agents ala Sabathia, Crawford, etc. He did allow, for better or worse, Furcal, Manny, Lilly,etc

          • BlueSkyLA 4 years ago

            The Dodger have been a better team over the last five years than it was under the Fox ownership. I think even the most inveterate McCourt hater would have to admit that much. But then the Fox years were an utter disaster for the Dodgers and it would not have taken a genius to show improvement.

          • Can you imagine what might have happened if the Dodgers actually had someone competent running the show?

          • BlueSkyLA 4 years ago

            Yes, unfortunately, I can imagine. My only point here really is that those who think the McCourt era has been all bad for the Dodgers don’t have very good memories.

      • JacksTigers 4 years ago

        From 2004-2008, he was a great owner. From 2009-present, he has been horrible.

      • sherrilltradedooverexperience 4 years ago

        He made some decisions that hurt the dodgers a bit as far as talent. Carlos Santana for Casey Blake would not have gone down like that but for McCourt’s shenanigans :( Dodgers consistently gave up more talent in trades to have the other side pay more or all salary. In that sense we were competitive despite McCourt.

        • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

          Hmmmm….I don’t know. How often does McCourt intefere with the GM decision?

          • “How often does McCourt intefere with the GM decision?”

            Do you want one good example? Jon Meloan and Carlos Santana for Casey Blake.

        • JTT11 4 years ago

          Did the Dodgers make the playoffs in 2008 with blake – YES
          would they have made the playoffs with Santana – NO
          would they have made the playoffs with out Blake – no

          are you being over critical of the trade that put you in the playoffs – YES
          Has santana proved that he is as good as casey blake – NO.
          Santana was a fringey prospect that didnt have a set position and in all honestly hasnt really shown up yet in the majors. (he only has 235 plate appearances.)

  22. 32952 4 years ago

    The Wilpons were scammed by Madoff, and lost their money. McCourt did it to himself by taking every dollar he could out of the team without even trying to build a real team. That’s the difference. The Wilpons also always acted for the good of the Mets before they got scammed, McCourt never acted in the Dodgers best interests.

    • JacksTigers 4 years ago

      The Mets weren’t scammed. They scammed other people. That’s why they are being sued for a billion dollars.

      • TapDancingTeddy 4 years ago

        As far as I understand it, that’s not correct. The Mets owners pulled out a lot of “profit” from their Madoff investment – as anyone could have done. But because the “profit” was actually money being taken from newer investors, they are are being sued for the money as ill gotten gains.

        The closest example I can give is buying a stolen car. You might have paid good money for it, but it doesn’t belong to you no matter how much you paid. It will still be recovered and returned to the original owner from whom it was stolen. That doesn’t make you a thief.

        Of course, if I’m wrong on any point, please correct. I’m not a legal guy – but that’s what I got out of what I read on the situation.

        • JTT11 4 years ago

          May not make you a thief, but here in PA it still makes you a criminal.
          18 Pa. Con. Stat. 3925

          • TapDancingTeddy 4 years ago

            In regard to that statute, does it apply to unknowingly buying stolen goods? That’s basically what the Wilpons did. They bought securities from a broker who was in good standing with the SEC, and who also had a sterling reputation.

      • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

        In every Ponzi scheme someone has to profit while others lose. The Mets may have turned a blind eye towards the reasons behing their unrealistic profits but they weren’t complicit in the scheme.

    • gunsnascar 4 years ago

      The tribune company former majority owners of the cubs did take money from the franchise to help offset the debt incured by the losing side of their empire the chicago tribune without fielding a competitive team for every year but 2 years in the 80’s and all of the 90’s and only fielded a competitive team when sam zell bought the team to raise the worth of the team to sell it.
      As far as the mets are concerned Im not entirely convinced that they are completely a innocent. They could be hiding money for bernie madoff.

  23. dodgers33dodgers 4 years ago

    who do you think gets the last laugh when all said and done…bud selig…frank mccourt…or jamie mccourt?

    i say jame…i dunno what frank did to piss her off but to take his money in a divorce and then get to see this…im sure shes sitting back with a bag of pop corn watching baseball tonight and sports center just laughing her butt off…lol!!!

  24. GoDoyers 4 years ago

    McCourt needs money for the following:

    -Divorce
    -The Bingham McCutchen lawsuit in Boston
    -IRS Fraud
    -The Stow Family suing him in the future

    I’m sure every penny that Fox would have given him would have gone towards the Dodgers.

    This clown needs to just give up.

    • neoncactus 4 years ago

      He would have put all of Fox’s money towards the Dodgers. And then taken $300 million out of their operating budget from another source towards his personal projects.

  25. JacksTigers 4 years ago

    This TV deal is getting smaller everytime I see it reported. It started as $3BB. Then it was $1BB. Now it’s $300MM. Pretty soon it will be an offer from DirecTV for Fox News en Espanol for being a loyal customer for 5 years.

  26. CitizenSnips 4 years ago

    “I suspect commissioner Selig calls the other 29 owners back when they call,” McCourt said.

    What a girl.

  27. just go away please.

  28. sherrilltradedooverexperience 4 years ago

    im sure his own girl doesn’t call him back all that consistently either. Maybe through her lawyer

  29. gunsnascar 4 years ago

    thanks to all that have supplied good answers to my questions about the mccourt mess
    the mets deal is still fuzzy though I cant wait to hear more info about that mess

  30. woadude 4 years ago

    Meanwhile Fred Wilpon is keeping the lowest profile possible, kind of like Oliver Perez kept a low profile when Luis Castillo was released, only funny thing is just like Perez was finally spotted and released, Fred Wilpon and his disgrace will be next on the list of owners who just need to go.

  31. woadude 4 years ago

    Also Fred Wilpon told Frank that the commissioner never calls him back either, so I guess its 28 he does and two he doesn’t, this is not going to be a coincidence….

  32. Bud Selig TOTALLY deserves the blame on this one. The Dodgers had other viable potential owners to choose from and Selig CHOSE McCourt, and this in spite of the fact that they all knew that McCourt was essentially purchasing the team with other peoples’ money. This whole thing was a joke from the very beginning. I agree with those that have called McCourt a clown, but Selig is an even bigger one.

    • stalker101 4 years ago

      I agree,but I have read that MLB was basically strong armed into selling the team to McCourt by Fox the previous owner because of their national Tv rights they hold for MLB and the billions involved..they for whatever reasons wanted McCourt to be the buyer..wither it was the fastest way to get the sale done or whatever..

      • neoncactus 4 years ago

        That and they had this notion that McCourt would bring back family owned baseball like the O’Malley days, instead of being part of a big corporation, which was also a disaster. Little did they know…

  33. JacksTigers 4 years ago

    Who needs puncuation when you can just throw three sentences together.

  34. 55saveslives 4 years ago

    “puncuation”?

  35. JacksTigers 4 years ago

    You know what I meant.

  36. vtadave 4 years ago

    …and you know what HE meant.

  37. JacksTigers 4 years ago

    ….and it took me about three times to read it before it made sense.

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