League May Boot Owner of 'Soap Opera' Dodgers

MLB takes control of team finances from Frank McCourt
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 20, 2011 6:05 PM CDT
Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt walks by the dugout in this file photo.   (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok, File)

(Newser) – Boston real estate developer Frank McCourt once tried to buy his hometown Red Sox, and Boston fans should rejoice today that the deal fell through. McCourt instead bought the Los Angeles Dodgers, and he's made such a mess of things that Major League Baseball today took over the finances of the reeling club, reports the Los Angeles Times. What's more, MLB chief Bud Selig may force the sale of the team by using the "best interests of baseball" clause, adds the New York Times.

How bad is it? The club is more than $400 million in debt, and season tickets have fallen from 27,000 in 2007 to about 17,000 this year, says the LAT. McCourt needed a $30 million personal loan from the club's previous owner, Fox Entertainment, to make the first payroll of the seaon this year. And his ultra-nasty public divorce (still unresolved) hasn't helped things. "This has been like watching a soap opera unfold," says the president of LA's chamber of commerce.

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