The O’Malley family owned the Dodgers for 47 years. While there are some old coots in Brooklyn who still hate them, they’re pretty much Dodgers royalty. Since selling the team the O’Malleys haven’t been terribly outspoken about the Dodgers, serving more as sources for historians, documentary filmmakers and authors and stuff than critics of the current regime. Which makes former owner Peter O’Malley’s comments to the L.A. Times about the McCourt saga yesterday fairly significant:
“The current Dodger ownership has lost all credibility throughout the
city. In my judgment, it would
be best for the franchise and the city if there was new ownership. For many years, the Dodgers have been one of the most prestigious
institutions in our city and throughout professional sports. Sadly, that is not the case today.”
Not that it will make any difference of course. The McCourts see the Dodgers as a cash machine and little more, and as long as it continues to dispense the cash — or at the very least serve as useful collateral for irresponsible borrowing — they’ll have no interest in selling the team to more responsible stewards. And that’s the case no matter how much they are publicly shamed either by the words of others or through their own shameless actions.
Free agent right-hander Chris Tillman is narrowing his pool of potential suitors, per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Returning to the Orioles is one option, of course, but Heyman also mentions another two undisclosed teams who are still in the running. An earlier report from Eduardo Encina of the Baltimore Sun suggests that as many as four teams may be in the mix; either way, a final decision is expected by Monday.
Tillman, 29, has spent the entirety of his major league career in Baltimore. After posting career-high numbers in 2016, his progress was derailed during an injury-plagued 2017 campaign, during which he missed nearly six weeks on the disabled list with recurring right shoulder inflammation. He finished the season with a bloated 7.84 ERA, 2.3 BB/9 and 4.9 SO/9 over 93 innings.
While the mystery teams have yet to reveal themselves, the Blue Jays, Twins and Tigers have all expressed interest in the veteran right-hander this offseason. Both the Blue Jays and Twins have made big moves to bolster their rotations over the last few days, with the additions of Jaime Garcia and Jake Odorizzi, respectively. That doesn’t mean that Tillman is out of reach, however — if his price is right, he could provide some much-needed depth for pitching staffs that finished 15th and 22nd in the league last year.