An Ass By Any Other Name Is Still An Ass !

An Ass By Any Other Name Is Still An Ass !

5th April, 2012

By tophatal ………

Well, Bud Selig having attended the Miami Marlins’ inaugural game at their new 37,000 seat venue , which in effect is baseball’s newest stadium since both Citi-Field and Yankee Stadium came into being . And while the commissioner while being interviewed by ESPN’s baseball analysts as to his thoughts upon the new venue ___ Bud Selig was quick to point out that the stadium while pristine will be able to serve the surrounding community of Miami in a number of social aspects . It was somewhat remiss of the commissioner to perhaps hide behind that charade , given the fact that city of Miami is now currently under investigation by the US Justice Department as to the financing for the Marlins’ ballpark . Mayor Tomas Regalado has been reluctant to answer any questions either privately or publicly concerning the issues pending the ongoing investigation . As if the game of baseball hasn’t already been tarnished enough recently , we now have to deal with ridiculous situation which may well bring into disrepute also the actions of the Miami Marlins’ ownership led by Jeffrey Loria and their undoubted communiques with the city . It begs the question , what if any actions were taken by the commissioner as the front office and city officials tried to hammer out a deal for the $575 million venue built at taxpayers’ expense ? Care to proffer up your thoughts on this ?

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Slide show for your perusal .

Bud Selig was quick to also point out that he was entirely happy with the outcome of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ sale to a consortium led by Magic Johnson , Stan Kasten and the senior partners of Guggenheim Partners LLC , one of the country’s largest venture capital firms (assets under management $125 billion [ $125,000,000,000] ). The sale of this storied franchise was for an unheard of $2 billion ($2,000,000,000) , making the ball-club the most expensive sale of a North American sports’ franchise in history . For departing former owner , Frank McCourt this brings to end an unsavory and rather sullied era during which , McCourt , his ex-wife Jamie McCourt and senior front office executives were simply negligent and need one say egregious in their actions , in the day-to-day running of the organization .

As to what now awaits the Los Angeles Dodgers and specifically the coaching staff and players is a matter of conjecture and speculation . From my own perspective , I am not so sure that the new owners can proceed ahead with many of the front office executives that are now in place within this ball-club ! GM Ned Colletti , CFO Peter Wilhelm will be extremely lucky if they are retained in their current positions . Stan Kasten , initially may well seek their input but in the long run both he , Magic Johnson , Mark Walter and Todd Boehly know that they need to start afresh in terms of a general manager and Chief Financial Officer .

For Don Mattingly as the manager of this renowned ball-club , having to endure the past months of uncertainty obviously had to have played a part in the team’s failings in 2011. To say that the Dodgers under-achieved last season would be an understatement to say the very least . The team finished a distant 11.5 games behind the Arizona Diamondbacks (94-68) who went on to the postseason having won the NL West with some ease .

What the Los Angeles Dodgers now have in their favor is the very fact that having rid themselves of Frank McCourt , is the very fact that the new owners are intent bringing about change . Specifically , change in such a way it brings about renewed confidence in this organization amongst its staff. Most notably so , amongst the player personnel . It would be naive to think that the uncertainty over much of 2011 did not play a part in the failings of the players. And as admirably as Matt Kemp played in leading the team in a number of offensive categories there’s no denying that beyond Kemp and Clayton Kershaw , there simply was not a great deal to take away to suggest that anyone had actually witnessed anything truly positive . Kemp’s heroic efforts led to him being the runner-up in the NL MVP honors last season , with Ryan Braun having won that dubious and tainted honor . In the aftermath of that result and the subsequent allegations leveled the Milwaukee Brewers’ player. As we all know, that whole episode ended with Braun being able to overturn his mandated suspension at an arbitration hearing . His exoneration was greatly helped by the idiocy shown an employee of the laboratory , hired to test the player’s samples and the very fact that evidentiary protocols were not strictly adhered to.

The Los Angeles Dodgers begin their season with a series of three games against divisional rivals the San Diego Padres . Those games will be played at PETCO Park , in San Diego , California . However, Mattingly and the team’s home opener won’t be until the 10th April where they will face that Pittsburgh Pirates at Dodgers’ Stadium . That inaugural home start will officially serve note as to the new team ownership meeting the fans en-mass in what is surely to be a highly anticipated game , given the recent turn of events . And there’s no doubt in my mind that the Dodgers’ players will certainly be looking to please their fans by serving up a victory .

The strength of the Dodgers as team when measured against their NL counterparts would have to be the team pitching . And with the success of Clayton Kershaw last season where he led the pitching staff in wins , K’s , WHIP’s , IP and games started . Those accomplishments simply placed Kershaw head and shoulders above his NL counterparts when it came to being named the outright winner of the Cy Young Award in 2011 . If he and the leading members of the starting rotation , made up of Chad Billingsley , Aaron Harang , Chris Capuano and a healthy …. Ted Lilly can simply live up to the expectations when measured against that of last season then there’s no reason to believe why the Los Angeles Dodgers cannot be a major contender within the NL West.

With the opening of the Dodgers’ schedule against the San Diego Padres where Clayton Kershaw will take the mound against Edinson Volquez . Both teams are as such, are expected to be at full strength . And for Padres’ manager Bud Black , his coaching staff and in particular this team it is imperative that they get off to a solid start this season . The Padres’ struggles in 2011 were well chronicled with the team having amongst the worst records in all of baseball at the end of that rather unsuccessful season . For managing partner John Moores , GM Josh Byrnes and the senior executives within the organization , anything short of a playoff berth would be considered a major disappointment this season. With a new and lucrative television deal in place , it is felt that with the off-season moves made , the on-field product would be deemed good enough to contend . As this team goes through course of their schedule we may well see the direction that Black , Byrnes and Moores hope that they are going in .

If nothing else , for the San Diego Padres to meet the expectations of their fans , then it will be incumbent upon the likes of Cameron Maybin , Orlando Hudson , Jesus Guzman , Nick Hundley and Chris Denorfia to produce if they are to have any real chances of measurable success . And it is also imperative that Corey Luebke , Dustin Moseley and Clayton Richards , who have been entrusted as the mainstays of the pitching staff to simply play at a heightened level alongside starting ace Edinson Volquez to give the team a real shot this year . Given the organization’s propensity to simply let their seasons simply slip from within their grasp , it seems only fitting that they now aspire to achieve something credible . The Padres have not been a part of baseball’s postseason since 2006 and have not played in a World Series since being swept by the New York Yankees in 1998 . And at this juncture , only can only hope with a change in the wildcard format which is being introduced this season , it can only add to the aspirations of the San Diego Padres and their long-suffering fans .

Now while Bud Selig basks in the glory and the sale of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ I can’t help but wonder what role if any he played in the part of the whole process ! It was clear from the very outset when the rumor mill was rife with the malfeasance of Frank McCourt , the commissioner chose to remain at arm’s length rather than have the league hierarchy conduct an investigation into the improprieties and actions of not only the owner , his ex-wife Jamie McCourt but also why absolutely no senior executive within the front office of the Dodgers’ organization sought the input the league office (hierarchy) as scurrilous acts were taking place . Now Selig is taking it upon himself , to regale the incoming ownership group , while at the same time questions are being raised about sale of the organization and whether or not the commissioner showed specific preference for the triumphant consortium led by Magic Johnson , Stan Kasten and the senior executives of Guggenheim Partners . Less we forget , it was Selig , himself , who fast-tracked the sale of the Dodgers to Frank McCourt in 2005, when it was widely known that he (McCourt) struggled to raise the financing to purchase the team , while in litigation with plaintiffs in a civil suit , for which he was a defendant . As to what this would suggest about the background checks conducted by the league of potential suitors for any of their franchises . Well , I’ll let you be the judge of that ! At this juncture as the title of this piece would suggest , I am not convinced that the commissioner has served the best interests of the game all that well !

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What are your early impressions if any, concerning the start of the season and the results so far ? And do you feel that the league hierarchy in terms of its conduct has been upfront concerning the sale of the Los Angeles Dodgers and specifically with regard to the actions of Bud Selig ? . It would appear that he is now choosing to ignore the questions being raised by not only by some owners but also by several front office executives of the teams as they feel that there has been some collusion on the part of the league hierarchy in the US Bankruptcy Court’s decision as to whose bid was deemed the most credible and noteworthy . Of the nine original suitors who entered the fray as potential bidders for the Dodgers’ franchise , it would appear that the process was dealt with expeditiously but likes of Mark Cuban and Joe Torre’s consortium who sought to be the potential owners , being quickly being dealt that ” death knell ” all too swiftly . The Dallas Mavericks’ owner made it known that he had no intention in overpaying for the franchise. In the case of Torre , it would appear that his bid did not prove to meet the criteria sought .

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Picture and slide show details below .
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(1) Magic Johnson (left) , part-owner in the syndicate that purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers is seen here with the former owner Fran McCourt (right) . Johnson , in partnership with venture capital firm Guggenheim Partners made an all successful cash bid of $2 billion for the ball-club . AP Photo Mark Curran …..

(2) Baseball fans stand near a dugout while posing for photos at Marlins Park before the Opening Day baseball game between the Miami Marlins and the St. Louis Cardinals, Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Miami. AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee ….

(3) Baseball fans mill about an upper concourse before the Opening Day baseball game between the Miami Marlins and the St. Louis Cardinals at Marlins Park, Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Miami. AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee …..

(4 ) St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Kyle Lohse drops his bat after bunting in the sixth inning during the Opening Day baseball game against the Miami Marlins, Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Miami. Yadier Molina was forced out at third, and Lohse was safe at first. The Cardinals defeated the Marlins 4-1 . AP Photo/Lynne Sladky ….

(5) Miami Marlins relief pitcher Randy Choate , left, tags out St. Louis Cardinals’ Daniel Descalso (33) on a ground ball during the eighth inning of the Opening Day baseball game, Wednesday, April 4, 2012, in Miami. The Cardinals defeated the Marlins 4-1 . AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee …..

(6) SAN DIEGO, CA – APRIL 5 : San Diego Padres players come onto the field before the home opener against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Petco Park on April 5, 2012 in San Diego, California. Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images ….

(7) SAN DIEGO, CA – APRIL 5 : Dee Gordon (9) of the Los Angeles Dodgers turns a double play over Orlando Hudson (1) of the San Diego Padres as Mark Ellis (14) of the Dodgers (L) looks on during the seventh inning in the home opener at Petco Park on April 5, 2012 in San Diego, California. The Dodgers won 5-3 . Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images ….

(8) Matt Kemp (27) of the Los Angeles Dodgers is congratulated by teammate Andre Ethier (16) after hitting a home run during the eighth inning against the San Diego Padres in the home opener at Petco Park on April 5, 2012 in San Diego, California. Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images …

(9) Magic Johnson (L) sits with Frank McCourt during the game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Diego Padres in the home opener at Petco Park on April 5, 2012 in San Diego, California. Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images …..

(10) Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp , center, crosses home plate while scoring from third on a bases-loaded walk as umpire Gary Darling , left, and San Diego Padres catcher Nick Hundley , right, look on in the fourth inning of a baseball game on Thursday, April 5, 2012, in San Diego. The Dodgers scored two runs on bases-loaded walks during the inning. AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi …..

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Author: tophatal ...........

Brit ex-pat living C Florida . Now working with a consultancy firm in the field of corporate governance on the international front , concerning economic policies . Also covering the area of finance , banking, international banking. An MBA graduate from the (LSE) and UCL (London) , M&A (mergers & acquisitions), economics , risk management & assessment . Martial artist (tae-kwondo, karate, savate , muy-thai) & an vowed sports ' fan , sports' junkie. Served in armed forces British ... Royal Marines . Taught unarmed combat to members of the military and also competed in tournaments prior to joining the Royal Marines . Also an avid motorcycle junkie & free running enthusiast . Tech geek and computer repair technician. Entertainment: Musical tastes _ reggae, r&b, soul, hip-hop, rap , jazz, classical. Film genres , Preferably thrillers , crime dramas Hobbies ..... reading biographies & anything by John Grisham Just a lil' something to make me feel comfortable ! Tophatal

16 thoughts on “An Ass By Any Other Name Is Still An Ass !”

  1. Really Magic ? Of all the people you could’ve chosen to see the game with as the new owner of the Dodgers you seat yourself with Frank McCourt ?

    Please don’t make a further ass of yourself by now making this a regular routine ! You paid $2 billion for the ball-club and you’re off to a fu#king bad start in terms of a PR and image exercise . What perception do you think the Dodgers’ fans will have after witnessing this ?

    And for those of you out there , what do you think ?

    tophatal …..

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  2. The Miami Marlins start the season 0-2 thus far, but I don’t think this will last. The Marlins should be the 2nd best team in the NL East behind the Phillies. Magic knows what he’s doing Alan. Frank McCourt has been the Dodgers owner for a while. Magic is just trying to squeeze as much juice (knowledge) as he can so that he knows what NOT to do with the team.

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    1. Blog Surface/ CDR

      The Marlins on paper may well be the “second best team ” in the NL but that roster is highly overrated ! Never mind the fact they’ve yet to show any real consistency , albeit that their games in Spring Training are meaningless .

      Ozzie Guillen has his work cut out for him this season not just within division but also across the league as a whole .

      As for Magic Johnson , that as a “PR ” blunder and it undoubtedly sends the wrong mess to the die-hard Dodgers’ fans !

      tophatal ………….

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  3. Selig says he’s entirely happy with the process in terms of the sale of the Dodgers . But already there have been some really pertinent questions as to how the deal was struck . Namely the tv deal that in the end was fast tracked that nets the Dodgers some $3 billion ($3,000,000,000) and that was prior to Frank McCourt taking the organization into bankruptcy proceedings (Chapter 11) . Also there’s said to be improprieties in terms of the commissioner’s actions , in interfering in the determining of which suitors (originally 9 [including Mark Cuban and Joe Torre as part of differing bidding groups ]) were eligible in the process , albeit , m that the league hierarchy hired an outside consulting firm Blackstone Group to provide it with much needed assistance and that of the US Bankruptcy Courts in Delaware .

    Something smells real rotten here amongst the already decaying carcass in terms of the game’s so-called ” integrity” !

    tophatal ………

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  4. I wouldn’t doubt that the sale of the Dodgers was set up my MLB to help increase the worth of the franchises. Who says crime doesn’t pay? And that goes for the new stadium deal in Miami.
    Oh well, I’m just glad baseball season has started.
    Play ball!

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    1. aero

      I swear that Selig has done irreparable harm to the image of the game with his idiosyncrasies ! At what point will it occur to his dumb ass that his decisions alone aren’t always best or in the best interests of the game ? Never mind the fact that these dumb ass owners simply look at him as being someone with a great deal of insight ! The league hierarchy is literally now filled with a bunch of guys whose years collectively of running the game haven’t always made the best decisions possible the vast majority of the time .

      Go Rays !

      What a wonderful ” pair ” of ” juice inducers ” !

      Here’s something for you to feast your eyes upon and to enjoy . Have a great weekend and my regards to you and the immediate family !

      tophatal ………………….

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  5. Is this another one of those stupid sales that lead to hell. Exactly why is the Justice Department looking into who funded the Marlins Ball Park. The Robbie family used their own money to build the Dolphins stadium. Who the hell was bidding up the price for Dodgers? Was there a plant in the bidding process? Are the Dogders now debt free.

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    1. Bobby Gee

      Mark Cuban made the right originally when he said ” the true price of the Dodgers won’t be determined byt its true worth but by what someone is willing to pay ” .

      Magic Johnson and his partners from Guggenheim Partners LLC overpaid , grossly overpaid as a matter of fact merely because of the locale .

      Anyone with an ounce of common sense and a business mindset would realize that fact but instead these assholes are lauding this deal as a worthwhile exercise ! Now comes the real truth how much of an input was placed upon the wishes of Selig and what actions if any were there concerning his communiques with the Blackstone Group , who were hired by the league hierarchy to assist in the process whilst working with the US Bankruptcy Courts in the state of Delaware .

      The Dodgers are in fact debt free , but herein lies the real issue overall how much of an outlay will be made by the new owners in terms of improving the roster ? Also what actions if any will be any to in part decrease parts of the expenditure . Normalcy dictates this when a major takeover or business merger takes place . Guggenheim as big as they are will look to recoup that outlay in part , though not overnight but in large part they intend to recoup that $2 billion ($2,000,000,000).

      tophatal …….

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    1. Sam’s Sports Brief

      Are you kidding me ? You obviously have no idea as to the length and breath of the deviousness of McCourt as the owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers . Here’s a guy who repeatedly used the team as collateral in several business deals that contravenes baseball’s own rules of conduct . Never mind the fact that when he bought the organization he was the defendant in several civil suits brought against him by business partners within the US District and Federal Court system . But somehow that ass-wipe Bud Selig felt that he should indeed become the owner of the Dodgers ! So you tell me how that doesn’t make Frank McCourt a terrible guy ! He has been disingenuous and dishonest in his dealings with baseball’s hierarchy and that of the fans . Think about the comments your making concerning this specific issue .

      tophatal ………..

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      1. While some of the decisions McCourt made relating to the team may have been unacceptable, I still think it was a nice gesture by Magic. You are saying that McCourt is a terrible guy to speak to simply by some bad decisions.

        If you were the owner of a team, and you made some bad team-related decisions, I wouldn’t necessarily have the right to think you a terrible guy.

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        1. Sams’s Sports Brief

          Let me pose this question how is it acceptable for McCourt to lie about the following ? One to use the team as collateral knowing full well it contravened league rules and then have executives simply suborn those actions . That’s way beyond a bad business decision or do you simply see it as all a part of the game of baseball ? He’s (McCourt) repeatedly done this over the course of business career and it should come as no surprise that his professional career is now in tatters ! And you had the temerity to suggest that an oaf like Selig wasn’t that bad an executive ? His own handling of this mess (Dodgers’ debacle) in the first place has been a complete joke ! Just as much in the same way he’s handled the “steroid issue ” and the Mets’ woe , which still leaves that ball-club in a financial mess as of now .

          As to Magic Johnson he’s not without his own peccadillos in terms of his private life . He now bears those scars through his own stupidity and naivete` having contracted the HIV-AIDS virus and in doing so he placed his wife and children in danger .

          I would never put myself in that sort of a situation to begin with ! Here’s my thought process, McCourt never truly had the Dodgers’ interests at heart and his decisions have always been about greed ! Hence, he alienated the fans and in large part the whole baseball community . More than half the idiots within baseball who call themselves owners have about as much business insight as the morons there are at the various levels within the federal government from the House , Senate right the way up to Presidential …. administration .

          tophatal ………

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        2. Sam’s Sports Brief

          Were the Dodgers a publicily traded company then Frank McCourt would’ve been facing federal charges for some of his actions . But an ass like Bud Selig lets this whole debacle simply spin out of control , while idiot fans waxed on lyrically about this whole thing without realizing the ramifications of McCourt’s actions and simply carrying on as if his business decisions were minuscule . How so, when many of his actions bordered on being egregious and nowhere near anything considered ethical from a business standpoint ! But an a__s wipe such as Selig made some really asinine comments on the whole issue . Apathy seems to be the norm amongst the vast majority of sports’ fans and in particular the league’s most senior executives !

          tophatal …………

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