This IS setting up for a long offseason – and perhaps generation? – of turmoil for fans of Vin Scully and the Dodgers. Bill Shaikin, one of the longest-tenured & most accomplished of the esteemed L.A. Times writers,
blistered the McCourts today in his story about their extravagant lifestyle personally while penny-pinching the fans & the team itself.
Here are a few key points from the story:
*the annual expenses Jamie claims she needs to maintain the lifestyle of a baseball owner are greater than the combined salaries of Kemp, James Loney, Clayton Kershaw, Jonathan Broxton and Chad Billingsley.
*Frank McCourt claims the Dodgers belong solely to him. Jamie McCourt claims she owns part of the team.
*According to a document filed by Jamie McCourt as part of the divorce proceedings, she and her estranged husband took home between $7 million and $8 million a year "in salary and/or distributions."
That would have more than covered Cliff Lee’s salary this season.
* Baseball America last spring ranked the Dodgers’ farm system 23rd among the 30 teams.
*The Dodgers have paid $8.5 million in signing bonuses for draft picks over the last two years — the lowest figure among all major league teams, according to Baseball America.
*The Dodgers, so proud of their heritage in Asia and Latin America, today are a non-factor in bidding for top amateur players abroad. In 2008, according to Baseball America, major league clubs combined to sign 115 such players for bonuses of more than $100,000. The Dodgers did not sign one.
* The numbers speak for themselves. The McCourts have not been shy about asking fans to pay top dollar and, at least according to the divorce proceedings, they have not been shy about paying themselves top dollar.
Personally, I just want to reiterate how offensive it is when Jamie McCourt claims to be the (wrinkled) ‘Face of the Franchise.’ That alone is enough to rile up fans of the once-proud organization.
Tantalizingly close to a World Series appearance this year, you really wonder what’s going to happen if the divorce drags out and the Kids are all free agents. . .