Matt Kemp will begin making $20 million a year next season. The Dodgers second-highest obligation? Frank McCourt! Or at least his company, which will get $14 million a year from the team for rent on the parking lots surrounding Dodger Stadium.
How much of that actually goes to McCourt is not clear — others own the company that owns the parking lots along with him — but suffice it to say, he’ll be making millions off the Dodgers, basically indefinitely.
Bill Shaikin has the details of the land use agreement which was part of the team’s sale but which, due to some legal wrangling over their confidentiality, were not known before now. I imagine the amount of lucre that McCourt is making despite his feckless management of the Dodgers is the sort of thing everyone would want to keep quiet as long as they can. I’d be embarrassed anyway.
McCourt got rich off parking lots in Boston. He was an abject failure as the owner of a baseball team. He’s going to make what amounts to a separate, independent fortune off parking lots in L.A. He’s a walking embodiment of the Peter Principle.
It’s always a bit deceiving to see offseason workout photos of players who are said to be getting into great shape because guys in those pics are wearing compression shirts and crap and we’re used to seeing them in baseball uniforms. I remember pics of Miguel Cabrera and David Ortiz in the offseason looking svelte, only to see them in uniform come spring as their familiar beefy selves. Uniforms are often loose and billowy and the players wear a couple of layers when they’re suited up, so at least visually speaking it’s better to compare apples to apples.