When Major League Baseball moved to take over the Dodgers last week, Frank McCourt’s new attack dog Steve Soboroff claimed that McCourt was being done dirty. He claimed that MLB was holding McCourt’s ATM card and not letting him take advantage of the $3 billion TV rights offer FOX had made him. An offer that would cure all which ailed the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Only one slight problem with that. The offer wasn’t really for $3 billion. It was for a bit over half of that:
Contrary to previous reports published in the Los Angeles Times and elsewhere, the new deal is not for 20 years at a price tag of $3 billion — rather, it is a 13-year deal valued at $1.6 billion, a person familiar with the pact said.
The Texas Rangers just got a $1.6 billion TV deal, albeit over seven more years. Still, the Los Angeles metro area is about twice the size of the Dallas Metro area, and I presume the disparity in the number of potential TV viewers grows greater as you move out into the larger market. In other words. it would seem that FOX’s offer to the Dodgers is low.
Which makes sense, because Frank McCourt is over a barrel. He’s exactly the kind of guy you try to lowball right now. FOX likely smells opportunity and Major League Baseball is right to intervene and not allow McCourt to leave money on the table that, in all likelihood, will be funding the team’s operations long after he has ridden off into the sunset.
You know. Like this.