File photo of Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt speaking at a news conference about increased security at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles

UPDATE: Frank McCourt took calls from Dodgers fans; didn’t help himself

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UPDATE: It doesn’t sound like Frank McCourt changed any minds during his radio hit today. According to Jon Weisman of Dodger Thoughts, McCourt basically said everyone is lying about him:

“If the stuff that was written about me was true, I wouldn’t trust me either”

Except that most of the stuff that has everyone hating and not trusting him were things that came out under oath during his divorce proceedings. Or, as Jon notes, all of the defenses McCourt raises are ludicrous on their face. Such as his claim that the FOX deal is totally fabulous despite the fact that it was clearly struck while McCourt was desperate. And that his financial woes are the result of Major League Baseball blocking the deal, even though it is a deal for the future and that it’s his past that is catching up with him.

The fans aren’t buying it either. The first caller on the radio show said that he won’t go to a Dodger game as long as McCourt owns the team. I don’t think that person is alone.

For a totally thorough recap, go to Dodger Divorce, where my friend Josh Fisher and ESPN’s Molly Knight, each of whom have been covering McCourt in detail for years, live-chatted the call, the recap of which you read now.  It’s not pretty for Frank McCourt. Unfortunately for him, he’s too deluded to realize it.

2:29 PM: This ought to be fun. Via Jon Weisman at Dodger Thoughts comes word that Dodgers “owner” Frank McCourt join Steve Mason and John Ireland at 3 p.m. Pacific time on ESPN AM 710 in Los Angeles. And during the broadcast he’s going to take calls from fans.

Here’s hoping that some good sharp questions are allowed through the call screeners. Not ranting lunatics, but Dodgers fans who can explain to Frank McCourt that his problems are not, contrary to his claims, one of fan perception. And fans who can demand from him something a little better than the condescension he’s been giving them for some time.

Mostly, though, this should be good for Frank McCourt awkwardness. He doesn’t strike me as a man who is very self-aware. It should be interesting to hear what happens when he’s challenged.

Mitt Romney’s sons are trying to buy a stake in the Yankees

TAMPA, FL - AUGUST 30:  Tagg Romney son of Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney gives an interview during the final day of the Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum on August 30, 2012 in Tampa, Florida. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was nominated as the Republican presidential candidate during the RNC which will conclude today.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
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Mitt Romney built his professional life in Massachusetts and was once the governor of the state. As such, it is not surprising that he has long identified as a Red Sox fan. So this has to be troubling to him from a fan’s perspective. From Jon Heyman:

The Romney family is bidding to buy a small stake in the Yankees months after their try for the Marlins stalled. If the deal goes through, it is expected to be $25 million to $30 million per percentage point and thought to be interested in one or two percentage points. The Yankees are valued around $3 billion or more.

The effort is being led by Mitt’s son Tagg, one of his brothers and their business partners. Mitt’s spokesman tells Jon Heyman that he has nothing to do with it personally. Tagg Romney is reported to have been planning a bid for controlling interest in the Marlins, but that has fallen through.

I find this interesting insofar as the M.O. for the Steinbrenners has, for years, been to buy out minority shareholders in the Yankees, not seek more. Indeed, when George Steinbrenner bought the Yankees back in 1973 he held just a bare controlling interest and there were a ton of silent partners, most of which were back in Ohio and knew Steinbrenner from his shipping business. I’ve personally gotten to know some of them over the years as there are a handful of them in Columbus and I crossed paths with them in my legal career. They have almost all been bought out in the past couple of decades. They still get season tickets and World Series rings and stuff. You can tell them by their personalized Yankees plates and the fact that, within the first ten minutes of meeting them, they will tell you that they once owned a piece of the Yankees but got pushed out.

In light of all of that it’s interesting that the Steinbrenners are once again accepting bids for small stakes in the team. Especially from someone whose interest in controlling the Marlins suggests that they do not consider it to be a mere vanity investment. Makes me wonder what the Steinbrenners’ long term plans are.

Max Scherzer still can’t throw fastballs

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 13: Max Scherzer #31 of the Washington Nationals works against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fifth inning during game five of the National League Division Series at Nationals Park on October 13, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
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The Nationals will be many people’s favorites in the NL East this season. Not everything is looking great, however. For example, their ace — defending NL Cy Young winner Max Scherzer — can’t even throw fastballs right now.

The reason: the stress fracture he suffered last August is still causing him problems and Scherzer is unable to use his fastball grip without feeling pain in his right ring finger. He will throw a bullpen session tomorrow, but will only use his secondary stuff.

Scherzer has not been ruled out for Opening Day — the fact that he is throwing some means that his timetable isn’t totally on hold — but you have to figure, at some point, not being able to air things out and use his heater will lead to some problems in his spring training routine.