Frank McCourt’s debt addiction got him and the Dodgers into their current dire straits, so it makes total sense that, as May payroll loomed yesterday, he continued to borrow in order to avoid a takeover by Major League Baseball. It’s just what he does.
That according to ESPN’s Molly Knight, who reports that McCourt met payroll by taking cash advances drawn from the team’s corporate sponsorship deals. Knight reports that the sponsors — unnamed at the moment — took discounts on their annual bills and on luxury box seats in exchange for the up front cash.
Of course, as was reported last week, June payroll is going to be way bigger because Manny Ramirez is owed a deferred compensation payment, so the inevitable has only been delayed. Which just means that, thanks to McCourt and his financial irresponsibility, whoever owns the Dodgers next will have their revenue streams needlessly diminished.
Doin’ a heckuva job there, Frankie.
Thursday is September 1, which means rosters expand. As a result, the Nationals plan to promote pitcher Mat Latos to the major league roster, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. Latos had an opt-out clause for Monday, but after discussing the matter with the team, he agreed to stay at Triple-A Syracuse until Thursday.
Latos, 28, put up a 4.62 ERA over 11 starts with the White Sox before being released in mid-June. Nearly two weeks later, he signed a minor league contract with the Nationals.
In the Nationals’ minor league system, Latos has made three starts for the club’s Gulf Coast League team as well as three for Syracuse. In aggregate, the right-hander has yielded six runs (four earned) on 20 hits and 10 walks with 28 strikeouts in 28 innings.
Latos will likely pitch out of a long relief role for the Nationals and can be used as starting rotation insurance as well.
Mark Buehrle hasn’t officially retired, but he hasn’t thrown a pitch in professional baseball since last October. Still, the Blue Jays wouldn’t mind having some insurance, so manager John Gibbons recently texted Buehrle, “You know, rosters expand in September,” Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports.
Buehrle’s response? He texted back a picture of a lake. Sounds like he’s not interested in making a return, at least this year.
Last year, at the age of 36, Buehrle went 15-8 with a 3.81 ERA with a 91/33 K/BB ratio in 198 2/3 innings while leading the league with four complete games. He fell 1 1/3 innings shy of a 15th consecutive 200-inning season. There are many worse ways to end a career.