Los Angeles Dodgers: Why MLB Is 1 Step Closer To Forcing Team's Sale

Rich StoweAnalyst IIIJune 21, 2011

LOS ANGELES - APRIL 29:    Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt attends the game against the San Diego Padres on April 29, 2011 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

With Bud Selig rejecting the television deal between Fox and the Los Angeles Dodgers yesterday, Major League Baseball is one step closer to forcing Frank McCourt to sell the Dodgers.

Not only did the rejection of the television deal put the divorce proceedings between Frank and Jamie McCourt back into limbo, it also means the Dodgers won't receive $385 million in upfront money.  My colleague here at Bleacher Report, Doug Mead, breaks down nine reasons how this affects the Dodgers ownership.

Basically, the Dodgers (and the McCourts) needed this money to meet a payroll deadline of June 30 (and to once again, pay for some of their own expenses).  If the Dodgers fail to meet the payroll deadline, MLB and Bud Selig would be able to step in and force the sale of the team. 

To meet a payroll deadline earlier this month (and hold off the forced sale of the Dodgers), McCourt was able to convince sponsors to give him an advance and he was able to meet the payroll deadline.

McCourt may attempt to sue baseball and force the television deal to be approved, however, I seriously doubt Bud Selig would have rejected the deal if there was any chance his ruling would be overturned by the courts. 

When people buy MLB teams, it comes with the understanding that baseball has the final say regarding things such as television deals, because any deal made by one team has to be "fair" and "in the best interest" of all MLB franchises. 

Owners of MLB teams also must realize that if the team is being run into the ground, MLB can step in pretty much at any time and take control.  That is what is happening with the Dodgers.  The McCourts have used the Dodgers as their own personal ATMs and have ruined a once-proud franchise.

It is my opinion that McCourt would be hard pressed to find more sponsors willing to give him an advance this time around, so that will allow MLB to step in and force the sale.  This has to make Dodgers' fans ecstatic.  It will finally mean that the McCourts will be out and hopefully a better owner will step in and take their place.

Over the last year or so, the McCourts could have sold off a minority share of the team just like the Wilpons did for the Mets earlier this season, and that might have prevented Bud Selig from having to take the drastic step of assuming control of the team and in the next 10 days forcing the sale. 

McCourt refused to do this, as he liked being the full owner.  That is one decision that is going to cost him the team.

Who will be the next owner?  Only time will tell.  Baseball needs the right owner to take control and restore this historic franchise back to its rightful place as one of the premier franchises in the league.

I'm personally rooting for someone like Mark Cuban to get the chance, but I don't see that happening.  Hopefully, Bud Selig has learned from the past when he allowed the McCourts to buy the Dodgers or Jeffrey Loria to buy the Marlins that just because someone has the money or has previously owned a team doesn't mean they would be the best owner. 

Hopefully he (and the other owners) allow someone to buy the team that will spend money on the team and wants to win.  Baseball does not need a cheap owner like Jeffrey Loria who only wants to line their pockets owning a team like the Dodgers. 

Dodgers fans and baseball as a whole need this situation handled correctly for the Dodgers to be successful once again.

So, what do you think?  Did Bud Selig do the right thing in rejecting the TV deal?  Who do you want to see as the new owner?  Please comment below.