Combination of file photos of MLB commissioner Bud Selig and Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt

Major League Baseball to offer alternative Dodgers financing today

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Today is only Day Two in what will likely be a lengthy set of legal proceedings for the Dodgers, but it’s a pretty big day.  Why? It’s the day of the initial hearing in the bankruptcy case and it’s the day on which the judge could very well decide if Frank McCourt is going to be able to continue to run the Dodgers while they’re in Chapter 11.

As we mentioned yesterday, Frank McCourt has secured a loan — a terrible one, but a loan nonetheless — of $150 million to keep the team operating during bankruptcy.  That has to be approved by the judge, however, and according to multiple reports out there, Major League Baseball is expected to offer an alternative financing solution. One that, one presumes, will not cost the Dodgers 10% a year in interest with a $4.5 million nuisance fee like McCourt’s plan. At the same time, baseball’s plan will likely come with the proviso that McCourt be kicked to the curb and the team be sold to the highest bidder.

The devil is in the details and we don’t know any details to MLB’s alternative financing plan so, no, it’s not certain that the judge would prefer baseball’s plan to McCourt’s.  But he could. If he does, it will likely mark the beginning of the end for him. If he lets Frank take his $150 million loan, it will likely be a much longer road ahead. At least for those of us who want to see Frank McCourt removed from power.

Zack Greinke named the Dbacks’ Opening Day starter

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 21:  Pitcher Zack Greinke #21 of the Arizona Diamondbacks poses for a portrait during photo day at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick on February 21, 2017 in Scottsdale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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Not a surprise, but a news item on a slow news day is a news item on a slow news day: Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo has named Zack Greinke as the club’s Opening Day starter.

Greinke’s first season with the Diamondbacks is not exactly what the club hoped for when he signed a six-year, $206.5 million deal in December of 2015. He dealt with oblique and shoulder issues while struggling to a 4.37 ERA over 26 starts. Greinke hasn’t pitched yet this spring, but will make his spring debut on Friday. He and the club are obviously hoping for a quiet March and a strong beginning to the season.

Either for its own sake or to increase the trade value of a player who was acquired by the previous front office regime.

“La Vida Baseball,” celebrating Latino baseball, launches

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A new website has launched. It’s called “La Vida Baseball,” and it’s all about celebrating the past, present and future of Latino baseball from a Latino perspective.

The site, produced in partnership with the Hall of Fame, has four general areas of focus:

  • Who’s Now: Focusing on current Latino players;
  • Who’s Next: Focusing on top prospects here, in the Caribbean and in Central and South America;
  • Our Life: Off-the-Field stuff, including player’s lives, lifestyles and hobbies; and
  • Our Legends: Focusing on Latino baseball history, Hall of Famers and overlooked players.

As the site has just launched there aren’t yet a ton of stories up there, but there is one about Roberto Clemente, another about Felix Hernandez and some other stuff.

The site is much-needed. Baseball reporters for American outlets are overwhelmingly white, non-Spanish speakers. Reporters, who, generally, gravitate to the players who are the most like they are. Which is understandable on some level. When you’re writing stories about people you need to be able to communicate with them and relate to them on more than a mere perfunctory level. As such, no matter how good the intentions of baseball media, we tend to see the clubhouse and the culture of baseball from a distinctly American perspective. And we tend to paint Latino players with a broad, broad brush.

La Vida Baseball will, hopefully, remedy all of that and will, hopefully, give us a fresh and insightful depiction Latino players and their culture.