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Wanna buy a minority share in the Dodgers?

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Are you a billionaire or, perhaps, a centimillionaire who is bored with day-to-day investing? Would you like to be treated like a god when you go to a ballgame rather than merely being treated like a king like all the other luxury box owners? Do you want to brag to your friends at the country club about how the business you partially own makes it, like, three steps from the top of its industry year after year?

If so, do the Dodgers have a deal for you! Bill Shaikin of the Times:

The Dodgers’ owners are interested in selling a small share of the team and have retained an investment banker to solicit bids.

There is no timetable for a possible sale, said the banker, Sal Galatioto. He added that Mark Walter would remain the Dodgers’ controlling owner, with his partners from Guggenheim Baseball Management.

This, like the way the Mets sold minority shares a few years ago, is a means of getting some liquidity into the hands of Mark Walter and his fellow Dodgers owners. If you buy a piece of the Dodgers you won’t get to hire or fire anyone and Tommy Lasorda will still get a better parking place than you. You will get access to a luxury box or maybe seats behind home plate. Though not as good as those seats that agent with the dark hair and glasses who sits just to the first base side of the lefthanded batters box gets. He’s there every night and he’s not moving for you.

But you will get to say you own a part of the Dodgers. You will get bugged for cash calls on occasion. You will get a polite “no” when asked to examine the financial records of the business and, if you actually do get to see them, you will likely be obliged to tell people that, really, baseball teams make no money at all, because that’s what baseball owners do.  And, in 5, 10, 20 or never years from now, when the majority owners decide to sell the team, you or your descendants may make a nice profit. Before then the principal owners can likely buy you out at a bargain rate for them, should you require it.

Yes, all of the perks of owning a non-controlling interest in a closely held company can be yours if you have, say, $20 million for a vanity investment. Who wouldn’t want that?

Jorge Soler diagnosed with strained oblique, Opening Day in doubt

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Royals outfielder Jorge Soler has been diagnosed with a strained oblique, making it likely that he begins the regular season on the disabled list, Rustin Dodd of The Kansas City Star reports.

The Royals acquired Soler from the Cubs in December in exchange for reliever Wade Davis. Over parts of three seasons with the Cubs, Soler hit .258/.328/.434 with 27 home runs and 98 RBI in 765 plate appearances.

When he’s healthy, Soler is expected to find himself in the Royals’ lineup as a right fielder and occasionally as a designated hitter.

Report: Cardinals, Yadier Molina making “major progress” on contract extension

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Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Cardinals and catcher Yadier Molina are making “major progress” on a contract extension. Molina told the team he won’t discuss an extension during the season, hence the rapid progress.

Molina is entering the last guaranteed year of a five-year, $75 million contract signed in March 2012. He and the Cardinals hold a mutual option worth $15 million with a $2 million buyout for the 2018 season. The new extension would presumably cover at least the 2018-19 seasons and likely ’20 as well.

Molina is 34 years old but is still among the most productive catchers in baseball. Last season, he hit .307/.360/.427 with 38 doubles, 58 RBI, and 56 runs scored in 581 plate appearances. Though he has lost a step or two with age, Molina is still well-regarded for his defense. The Cardinals also value his ability to handle the pitching staff.