Frank McCourt has first meeting with team monitor Tom Schieffer

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According to the Associated Press, Dodgers owner Frank McCourt met Friday for the first time with Tom Schieffer, who was recently appointed by commissioner Bud Selig to oversee the team’s daily operations.

One of Schieffer’s first acts as “monitor” was to approve the team’s latest payroll. McCourt personally borrowed $30 million from FOX to meet payroll in April, which did not require approval from MLB. However, it’s not known if they’ll be able to meet payroll in May.

Schieffer, who was given an office at Dodger Stadium, told the Los Angeles Times that he assured Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti that he will operate normally and will only need his approval for an increase in the budget. In turn, Colletti told Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times that the Dodgers’ budget allows for moves similar to the ones they made at the last few trade deadlines. Yes, that means Colletti might have the chance to make more horrible trades like the Octavio Dotel for James McDonald and Andrew Lambo deal.

McCourt obviously isn’t thrilled with having Schieffer around and is still making his case to get MLB’s approval on a new television deal from FOX.

“I’m allowed here to run this business,” Frank McCourt said. “The judge has made that, he made that clear, and this deal is a great deal for the Dodgers. It’s ready to be signed. It’s ready to go and any questions about the Dodgers’ financial stability are solved simply by these documents.”

Meanwhile, Rob Manfred, MLB’s executive vice president for labor relations, said that they want to conduct a full investigation into the club and its finances before rendering a decision. And considering how much money McCourt could potentially be leaving on the table in this deal, it’s unlikely this will end well for him.

Dodgers plan to tab Clayton Kershaw for Game 1 of World Series

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MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports that the Dodgers plan to tab ace Clayton Kershaw for Game 1 of the World Series. Nothing is set in stone yet ahead of Tuesday’s Game 1 of the World Series. In the event Kershaw can’t start Game 1, Rich Hill would start. Otherwise, Hill would start Game 4.

Kershaw, started Game 1 and Game 5 of the NLCS against the Brewers, then closed out Game 7 with a flawless inning. He was hit around to the tune of five runs (four earned) over three-plus innings in Game 1, but rebounded for seven innings of one-run ball in Game 5. He struck out two en route to sending the Dodgers to the World Series in the ninth inning of Game 7.

Kershaw also tossed eight shutout innings against the Braves in Game 2 of the NLDS. Overall, he has a 2.37 ERA in 19 innings this postseason. There was no doubt who would be the Dodgers’ first choice to start Game 1, but it’s a relatively recent situation where the ace of a team also closed out the final game of the previous series.

Hill has put up a 2.61 ERA in 10 1/3 innings this postseason. While he doesn’t have Kershaw’s pedigree, the Dodgers would be confident having him lead off the series. Hill was excellent down the stretch last year, helping the Dodgers reach Game 7 of the World Series against the Astros.

The Red Sox plan to start Chris Sale in Game 1 now that he’s recovered from a brief stint in the hospital due to a stomach ailment. The lefty has a 3.48 in 10 1/3 innings in the playoffs this year. He’s among a handful of candidates for the AL Cy Young award after posting a 2.11 ERA in the regular season, but his lack of innings (158) may hurt him.