Dodgers File Bankruptcy

The Los Angeles Dodgers and four affiliated companies filed for bankruptcy this morning in Delaware Bankruptcy Court. In a statement, Dodgers’ owner Frank McCourt stated that the filing was done “in order to protect the franchise financially and provide a path that will enable the Club to consummate a media transaction and capitalize the team.”

McCourt also blamed MLB Commissioner Bud Selig for forcing the Dodgers to file bankruptcy, claiming that Selig “turned his back on the Dodgers” and “knowingly and intentionally expose[d] the Dodgers to financial risk.”

McCourt appears to have obtained an offer of $150 million of “debtor in possession” (DIP) financing from JP Morgan Chase to provide the Dodgers with the cash needed to get through the bankruptcy. The financing must be approved by the Bankruptcy Court before it can become effective. If approved, JP Morgan Chase would obtain a “super-priority” status, insuring that it would be paid ahead of most other claims against the Dodgers in the bankruptcy.

I will post more here as soon as the dust settles. But a few quick and preliminary notes follow the jump.

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A closer look at Nick Swisher’s up and down season

After starting the season in a miserable slump, Nick Swisher ended Sunday’s game batting a respectable .245/.366/.412. While that is far from where many had hoped he would be after nearly half the season, entering Sunday’s game that line translated to a 109 OPS+ and a .342 wOBA. Neither stat is as solid as what Swisher posted last season, but he’s  not far from his career numbers of 116 and .356, respectively. Swisher’s troubles have been due entirely to his lefthanded swing. Entering Sunday’s game he was a .429 righthanded wOBA hitter but only a .307 wOBA hitter lefthanded. He’s Continue reading A closer look at Nick Swisher’s up and down season

Addition by payroll subtraction

Over at The Ray Area, Mark conducts a mini interview with ESPN’s Steve Berthiaume about their disagreement on the viability of the Tampa Bay market for a professional baseball team. It’s a great interview and you should definitely give it a read, but from a larger standpoint, this response from Berthiaume when Mark asked him about the Rays general profitability caught my eye:

The organization has had to cut payroll by $ 30 million, putting itself at a competitive disadvantage and the owner has stated publicly, several times this year, that the franchise cannot sustain itself in its current situation.

On the latter point I have no real faith. The owner is a businessman who would like to secure public funds for the purpose of subsidizing a massive real estate investment for his firm, so I tend to assume he has every reason to be hyperbolic and fatalistic. Without some independent corroboration, there’s no reason to take his claims at face value.

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Quote of the Day: Frank McCourt

Truly great quotes need no explanation or commentary. Today’s quote of the day comes from disgraced Dodger owner, Frank McCourt. Upon filing the Dodgers for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, he provided this explanation behind his actions.

“I simply cannot allow the Commissioner to knowingly and intentionally be in a position to expose the Dodgers to financial risk any longer.”

While I could easily make an incredibly snarky comment here, I’m going to abstain because it stands up pretty well on it’s own. Instead, I’ll let you revel in it’s beauty, and merely refer you to this brilliant article written by our very own Larry Behrendt.

Hat tip to Craig Calcaterra of NBC’s Hardball Talk for reading through the lengthy statement released by McCourt earlier today that contained this nugget of comedy gold. Continue reading Quote of the Day: Frank McCourt

Torre remembered, not missed

Joe Torre’s return to Yankee Stadium for Old Timer’s Day has left me in a rare state; I don’t know what to say. On the one hand, deep down I would like to be able to bury the hatchet with Saint Joe, if only to be able to think back on the Torre-era teams without any mixed feelings caused by the manager. On the other hand, largely because I’m a huge fan of Alex Rodriguez and never thought Torre much of a field manager, I’ve basically come to grips with the fact that my feelings for the old skipper will probably never be truly positive.

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Why I (still) don’t think it makes sense to trade Jesus Montero

Buster Olney had an insider only piece about rival evaluators “taking note” of Jesus Montero’s offensive downturn in 2011. He mentions that some think the Yankees “could push Montero this season ‘in an effort to recoup some value.’” (MLBTR) I’ve said many times before that I don’t think trading Montero would be prudent for the Yankees unless they were getting absolute top of the line talent back for him. I still believe that and always will believe that. Right now, it is still not a good time to trade Jesus Montero. When I discuss trades, I like to discuss actual Continue reading Why I (still) don’t think it makes sense to trade Jesus Montero

Pondering Wandy Rodriguez and Hiroki Kuroda

A few days ago commenter Stunna asked me to comment on the idea of the Yankees trading for either Wandy Rodriguez or Hiroki Kuroda, who — given that neither player’s team is playoff-bound as well as the fact that both teams have ownership issues — have probably been two of the most bandied about names attached to the Bombers as potential trade targets. As you’d expect, both TYA and River Ave. Blues have already explored the idea of Kuroda, and RAB looked at Wandy last winter before the Astros extended him, so be sure to check those pieces out as Continue reading Pondering Wandy Rodriguez and Hiroki Kuroda

Game 76: Rockies 4, Yankees 6

The Bronx Bombers looked to continue their interleague success, as they attempted to take a series win over the Colorado Rockies on Sunday afternoon.  The Yankees offense was slow to start, but they powered their way to a 6-4 victory over the Rockies.

The Rockies got on the board first, with a solo shot by Ty Wigginton in the second inning. Juan Nicasio kept the Yankees guessing through the early innings, as they failed to get a runner on in the first four innings of the game.

Colorado put some space between them and the Yanks in the fifth inning. Chris Iannetta led off with a solo homer and Carlos Gonzalez drew a walk.  He stole second and moved to third on a ground out. Todd Helton then drove a sac fly to center, giving the Rockies a 3-0 lead.

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Continue reading Game 76: Rockies 4, Yankees 6

Hip Hip, Jorge!

I’m not gonna lie, I’m pretty worn out from a day of packing, I’m going to take the cheap way out and do the old fashioned bullet point set of notes about today’s game. Sound good? Sounds good.

  • How about Jorge Posada? After not homering since mid-April he’s got two in the past week now. Jorge’s hitting a whopping .389/.424/.537 for the month of June. Sure his BABIP is a ridiculous .455, but considering how low it was earlier this season that’s basically just a correction at this point. His strikeout and walk rates are still very solid, so hopefully this is proof Posada hasn’t lost the ability to do damage with the bat and he’ll finish the season hitting like we’re used to seeing him hit.
  • Nick Swisher, another guy the Yankees need to get straightened out, had a home run today. Swisher has quietly come around to being a very useful hitter again, and though his average and slugging percentage aren’t great by his standards, there’s nothing wrong at all with a .368 OBP. Swisher currently boasts a .342 wOBA and 114 wRC+. Not bad at all, especially if he can continue to produce like Yankee fans have grown accustomed to.
  • How about the new an improved Boone Logan? One inning, no baserunners allowed, and a strikeout. When is A-Rod sitting down with A.J. Burnett again?
  • The bullpen in general was pretty awesome. David Robertson pitched a perfect 8th inning, striking out too, and Mariano Rivera struck out the side in order to close out the 9th. Just another day at the office for those two.
  • With the victory today the Yankees claimed another series, despite losing the opener Friday night. The Yankees have now won five series in a row, and sit alone atop the A.L. East.

Continue reading Hip Hip, Jorge!