In the last few years, Fred Wilpon, co-owner of the New York Mets, has gone from being the Santa Claus of professional sports to playing the part of baseball’s Grinch. The transformation was necessitated by Bernie Madoff’s failed Ponzi scheme and Wilpon’s own fiscal incompetence.
But suddenly this season, Wilpon’s role as the major league’s most evil villain has been plucked away by Frank McCourt, owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Trying to survive a well-publicized divorce, McCourt is clinging to the Dodgers like a kidnapper holds onto a hostage. His most recent move was to force the team into bankruptcy rather than play ball with Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig. The Commissioner, meanwhile, is planning to seize the Dodgers to protect the integrity of the team.
What can Fred Wilpon learn from all this? Following is a brief lesson plan: