Let’s Face It Baseball And Its Hierarchy Haven’t A God Damn Clue
By tophatal ………… 4/24/2012 – 10:13:12 PM
Over the past few weeks I’ve been reassigned within our banking and finance section ( workplace ) in aiding with bond issues for municipalities within the state of Florida . What has become apparent in recent years are the number of municipalities , state and county governments that are in bankruptcy proceeding or who intend to enter into that particular phase . Consider the situation of Jefferson County , Alabama who recently declared bankruptcy (Chapter 9) with debts in excess of $ 4.3 billion ($4,300,000,000) and the county government itself has sought to auction off buildings owned by that governmental agency . In light of the recent acknowledgement that former Los Angeles Dodgers’ owner Frank McCourt having taken the organization into bankruptcy in 2011. That Chapter 11 filing in the US Bankruptcy Court within the state of Delaware saw the ball-club with debts in excess of $1.45 billion and assets of a mere $455 million . . Not enough to satisfy with team’s creditors by any stretch of the imagination . The rudimentary issues faced by the organization which was recently bought by a consortium led by former NBA great Magic Johnson , former league front office executive Stan Kasten and the senior partners of buyout specialists and capital investment firm Guggenheim Partners LLC , whose CEO , Mark Walter , his partners in conjunction with Kasten and Johnson lodged a successful $2 billion ($2,000,000,000) all cash bid for the Dodgers.
Slide show for your perusal .
What might be even more exacerbating when now takes into the egregious actions of Frank McCourt , it has been revealed that the former owner will walk away $800 million after the sale of the ball-club. This may well not sit well with the Los Angeles Dodgers’ fans even with the advent of the sale to the new owners. At the same time , I have to wonder how it is that Bud Selig and the members of the league hierarchy can actually feel entirely happy with this outcome ! And while several team owners have questioned the whole bidding process and whether or not the commissioner surreptitiously favored the winning bid over that of the six other active purchasers taking part in the process . Granted , the presiding judge was aided in this endeavor by investment firm The Blackstone Group . Pardon me for saying this , but any idiot seeking to support Bud Selig as the MLB commissioner , either has to be anally retentive or simply without a god-damn ounce of common sense ! Never mind the fact that Selig’s annual salary $23 million would place him amongst the highest paid players within baseball . And to think that there are several teams within the game that continue struggle to even remain competitive much less be in a financial position to meet their payroll needs . At some point the fastidious morons out there will wake up and smell the coffee or simply continue to drink the Kool-Aid . Which is it to be for you at this juncture ? Rather than continue to act as if all is right within the world of baseball as we are said to know it .
Courtesy of USA Today
By Bob Nightingale , USA Today
Major League Baseball plans to evict Frank McCourt from its exclusive club in a week, but the celebration is shrouded with caution.
Financial questions first arose when McCourt, who failed in an earlier bid to buy the Boston Red Sox , purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2004 . And while his reign has left the proud franchise in financial ruins, there are fears that baseball’s rush to get rid of him could change the way teams are bought and sold.
The Guggenheim Baseball Management group , led by owners Mark Walter and Magic Johnson and President Stan Kasten, agreed to pay McCourt a record $2.15 billion for the Dodgers. The group hopes to close the deal Monday, but unlike every other baseball franchise, the Dodgers’ financial structure is not governed by Major League Baseball. A U.S. bankruptcy court judge has the sole right to make decisions on future disputes that could arise between the Dodgers and MLB, including revenue-sharing payments.
PHOTOS: Magic Johnson gallery
Once McCourt declared bankruptcy, baseball negotiated a deal with the owner and the court to allow him to sell the team to the highest bidder.
“Now every owner knows that the best way of maximizing your value is by going to bankruptcy court,” says Marc Ganis , president of Sportscorp Ltd. , which consults with MLB teams and other sports on stadium financing .
“Baseball just got taken to the cleaners in the agreement with McCourt. Baseball screwed up, and they know it.
“What they’ve done is create a league where rules apply for 29 teams, and rules apply for one team. Baseball knows it’s a problem. They tried to stop it. The judge wouldn’t let them. Now, they’ve got a recipe for disaster.”
Five MLB officials, including three owners who spoke on the condition of anonymity, privately confirm their concerns but say that many of their fears were eased in the past week. While the Guggenheim group is paying nearly three times the previous record for a baseball franchise (the Chicago Cubs were sold for $845 million in 2009), persons with knowledge of the situation, who don’t wish to be identified because of confidential issues regarding the sale, claim that only in the last few days did MLB receive detailed financial information about the purchase agreement. MLB attorneys and the Guggenheim group met several times last week with a court-appointed mediator to resolve lingering concerns.
Yet Tom Lauria, a lawyer representing MLB, said in court that baseball still was troubled that it did not know details of the revenue-sharing arrangement between the Guggenheim group and McCourt involving the Dodger Stadium parking lots, which they will share equally. There’s also a fear among owners that there are confidential provisions in the agreement that could permit the Dodgers to circumvent aspects of MLB’s revenue-sharing agreement with their regional sports network or new TV contract.
Click on link to read this article in full .
The thought that Frank McCourt walks away from this debacle with almost $1 billion in his pocket ….. reeks of malfeasance of the highest order in which the Dodgers’ former owner and his actions were so egregious and premeditated . The fact that McCourt has rifled through the coffers of the ball-club and repeatedly used the team as business collateral , has me wondering how is it that when these actions first came to light the league hierarchy simply turned a blind eye ! Is Bud Selig that naive an individual or that much of an asshole to not recognize that an owner acted with reckless abandonment while contravening several mandated business rules , which all teams have to abide by ? Any thoughts on this at all ? McCourt’s new-found wealth has nothing at all to do with capitalism but simply a manipulation of an archaic process and system that simply rewards what on the face of it was in some ways a criminal act ! Were the teams in the game of baseball publicly listed companies then without a doubt the SEC (Securities & Exchange Commission) and Justice Department would have been all over the Los Angeles Dodgers’ organization. But then again both if these governmental agencies in conjunction with the US Federal Reserve and US Treasury have been about as judicious and shown enough oversight of the financial sector , as a blind man playing hopscotch in a fu_king minefield ! Shit simply gets blown up repeatedly ! Let’s get one thing clear Tim Geithner may well have swallowed Webster’s Dictionary but this ass wipe shouldn’t be placed anywhere within the close proximity of a kids’ lemonade stand much less handle the financial accounts of the US government or the handling of taxpayers’ monies , through overseeing the IRS as part of his US cabinet duties .
The Treasury Department and the SEC’s Investigative Unit have been negligent in their duties . So much so , that both sat idly by while Lehman Bros Inc , formerly the world’s largest investment bank filed for bankruptcy and doing so laden itself with debts of $300 billion ($300,000,000,000) , the largest . corporate bankruptcy US history . Financial mismanagement and the very fact that pro-forma balance sheets were being declared as authentic in their detailing of the bank’s financial status were in fact being fraudulently stated as being above reproach . The bank’s former CEO Richard Fuld in his sworn testimony to first the Senate Banking Committee and then House Finance Committee stated that during 2009 and 2010 both the audit and investigatory panels of the Federal Reserve and Treasury Department were housed in the Manhattan headquarters of Lehman Bros , as the agencies were conducting their own investigations in to the day-to-day operations of the bank and investment house was at the center of their financial difficulties . Fuld , and other senior executives within the bank’s hierarchy have yet to explain how it is the bank simply ran into such financial difficulties . It is clear that Lehman Bros was reckless , in their business practices , dealing in the financial derivatives’ markets , subordinated debt and the mortgage back debt (MBS) instruments . The latter of which systematically brought about the near demise of multi financial insurance behemoth AIG Inc . And as we know the insurance giant has received in excess of $185 billion ($185,000,000,000) . of taxpayers’ funds for the “to big to fail “ behemoth . Those funds have yet to be repaid but we have been told by President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden that the taxpayer will be in receipt of their funds in full. To date AIG still owes the US taxpayer in excess of $125 billion . The US government is top-heavy with bureaucracy and in large part both legislative chambers, namely the House and Senate have a group of individuals who show about as much insight in safeguarding the country’s well-being as an arsonist would before he sets fire to his victim of choice . In this case , it has been the US taxpayer and the electorate at large who are the victims of the legislative bodies’ stupidity . .
The MLB hierarchy not-unlike the US government and specifically the House and Senate seems to be completely devoid of almost any god-damn intelligence ! You’d be hard pressed to state one piece of legislative act that has been of much use to public that has become a statute in the past eighteen months . Conservatives and Liberals alike can continue to brow-beat each other with all the animus that they can muster but in large part few if anyone , truly understands what is exactly happening in-front of their very eyes. Baseball under Selig’s hierarchy has shown about as much intelligence as can be found in a lunatic asylum filled with individuals who have been “Brady” enacted . It is safe to say that MLB has done more harm to its image over the past decade than anything that could have been done by a lone bomber on a suicide mission.
Did I miss something in the past ten days ? Almost overnight Matt Kemp of the Los Angeles Dodgers has become the most ” feared hitter “ in the game . The player’s productivity for the team has been one of the primary reasons for their fast start out of the gate and they’re being seated atop of the NL West with a 3 1/2 game lead over the closest rivals within the division. While Don Mattingly’s players knowing that there now will be some semblance of continuity with new a new ownership group in place , will now do their utmost to give the fans something to feel special about .
The Los Angeles Dodgers (12-4) followed by the Arizona Diamondbacks (8-8) , Colorado Rockies (8-7) , San Francisco Giants (8-7) , and the San Diego Padres (5-12) . This time last season the teams within the NL West were still looking to make themselves resonate within the game . Come full circle , and it’s very much the same thing once again. And for the slow starting Atlanta Braves (10-6) this year will be a historic one as it will be the last season for the team’s third baseman Chipper Jones . This lifetime .300 hitter is certainly a bona-fide Cooperstown , enshrinee for the Hall of Fame .
The Atlanta Braves are the guests of the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodgers’ Ballpark /Chavez Revine for two games . The first of which is Tuesday night that sees Aaron Harang (1-1, 5.40 ERA) taking the mound against Mike Minor (2-1, 3.10 ERA ) . This game if anything should give us something of an indication as to the direction of both teams and their undoubted ambitions for this year. For Braves’ manager Fredi Gonzalez and his managerial staff as they now doubt seek to redeem themselves after last September’s inexplicable meltdown by the team . That implosion led to the Braves missing the wildcard berth for the NL , which deservedly went to the eventual World Series champions the St Louis Cardinals . Those events if anything cast a giant shadow over the Braves’ organization and if anything showed that the inexperience of a young team at its core simply was unprepared.
This season if anything , the Atlanta Braves if they are to fare well , will have to meet head-on and defeat teams such as the Los Angeles Dodgers. Easier said than done , however it tests such as this that will provide this team with the mettle it will undoubtedly need to succeed in the long-term. As I alluded to earlier Matt Kemp is off to an astounding start in the Majors . As of Tuesday , the player led his team in a number of offensive categories , batting .450, 27 hits, 9HR’s and 27 RBI’s . It’s pretty much safe to say that were there any real justice in the world of baseball then it would have been Kemp being named the NL MVP for last season rather than the Milwaukee Brewers’ …. Ryan Braun . But as we all know : hindsight is 50/50 and a bitch by any other name is still a bitch !
Beyond the prolific output of Kemp this season , we also have the player being ably abetted by teammates Andre Ethier , A J Ellis , Juan River and James Loney . This may not be the best that we will see out of this team but it certainly is now wetting the appetites of the Dodgers’ fans at this juncture . And while the Los Angeles’ pitching should not be overlooked with Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw , being a part of that pitching staff . It has to be said the ball-club now seems to be clicking on all cylinders . Kershaw , alongside , Kenley Jansen , Aaron Harang , Ted Lilly and Jay Guerra , have all created something special , of which I have no doubt that the new ownership group are thoroughly pleased with !
On the mound today for the Dodgers will be Ted Lilly (2-0, 0.69 ERA) facing Brandon Beachy (2-1, 0.47 ERA) of the Atlanta Braves . This game should make for a very interesting test of teams , given last night’s result which ended with a 4-3 victory for the Atlanta Braves .
Picture gallery for your perusal .
In light of the latest turn of events concerning the Los Angeles Dodgers who do you believe has to bear the brunt of the obvious mistakes , concerning the handling of the situation ? And do you as such, believe that there is enough transparency within the game as it relates to the business dealings of the teams ? Bear in mind although they are such private business concerns but by the largess of the state and city municipalities in which they operate , all of the ball-clubs within the game receive favorable tax allowances merely for operating within that municipality . Never mind the fact that in large part , the governmental agencies also tend to finance the venues in which teams reside and play , much to the detriment of their own infrastructures . Small market teams make out like thieves in the night but rarely do you hear anything to the contrary by those who claim to be knowledgeable in such matters ! . Needless to say , the team owners and MLB league hierarchy would rather keep “this gravy train running ” at the expense of the fans and public alike . While the elected officials in question , continue to make complete asses of themselves _____ kissing the ass of the sports’ franchise owners and their respective hierarchies . Simply chime in with your thoughts on this , and anything else you believe pertinent to subject matter . And as always , thanks for the continued support of this site as it greatly appreciated !
Picture and slide show details below .
(1) Geithner, Bernanke, And Fuld Testify At House Hearing On Lehman Bankruptcy Former Lehman Brothers Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Richard Fuld (L) and Thomas Cruikshank , former member of the Board of Directors and chair of Lehman Brothers Audit Committee, testify before the House Financial Services Committee about the collapse of Lehman Brothers April 20, 2010 in Washington, DC. Court-appointed bankruptcy examiner Anton Valukas’ report, published in March, refers to a Lehman tactic that temporarily shuffled about $50 billion off the firm’s balance sheet for the two fiscal quarters before it collapsed , making the investment bank look less indebted than it really was . Getty Images North America /Chip Smodevilla ….
(2) Lehman Brothers former Chairman and CEO Richard Fuld (L) talks with Harvey Miller , business finance and restructuring partner at Weil, Gotshal & Manges, LLP , before the two men testify to the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission about the roots and causes of the 2008 financial and banking meltdown in U.S. and worldwide markets on Capitol Hill September 1, 2010 in Washington, DC. The commission begins two days of questioning about how two specific financial companies, Wachovia and Lehman Brothers, failed and why some institutions were considered “too big to fail” while others were allowed to fail. Getty Images / Chip Smodevilla ……
(3) Magic Johnson ,left, and former MLB front office executive Stan Kasten are part of the consortium that purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers for a record $2.15 billion . Questions abound as to how the entire bidding process was actually dealt with by the presiding judge who as assisted by the investment advisory firm Blackstone Group. It is believed that Bud Selig may well have favored the ‘winning bid ‘ simply because of the price , rather than the others lodged with US Bankruptcy Courts in Delaware . There a still a number of questions that remained unanswered by Johnson and senior members of his syndicate which also includes Hollywood film producer Peter Guber and senior executives from Guggenheim Partners LLC . Rob Powell / AFP …..
(4) Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner , seen here speaking to members of the Senate Banking Committee up on Capitol Hill , Washington , DC , concerning the ailing banking industry . Geithner , was pointedly asked to explain why the likes of Lehman Bros and Wachovia Bank failed . His response was somewhat lackluster and plainly banal , much to the angst the empaneled members . Getty Images / Mark Wilson …..
(5) LOS ANGELES, CA – APRIL 25: Dee Gordon (9) of the Los Angeles Dodgers reacts after he couldn’t make a throw after making a diving stop on a ball that deflected off of pitcher Jay Guerra in the ninth inning against the Atlanta Braves on April 25, 2012 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. The Braves won 4-2. Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images …
(6) Closer Javy Guerra (54) of the Los Angeles Dodgers reacts as Dan Uggla (26) of the Atlanta Braves comes in to score the Braves’ third run of the ninth inning on April 25, 2012 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. Guerra was the losing pitcher as the Braves won 4-2. Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images …..
(7) Matt Kemp ( (27) of the Los Angeles Dodgers hits a solo home run in the sixth inning against the Atlanta Braves on April 25, 2012 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. The Braves won 4-2 . Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images ….=====================================================================================================================
Maxwell …………… “Ascension ” from his seminal 1996 multi-platinum CD “Urban Hang Suite” . Music as it should be !