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.

Report: Padres have made offers to both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper

Manny Machado
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Jon Heyman has been hot on the free agent trail today, reporting that the Padres have made offers both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper. The offer to Machado is believed to be for eight years and about $250 million, while the offer to Harper is believed to be for more than that.

Heyman was reporting on Harper earlier, tweeting that the Phillies are the favorite to sign him. He added this evening that Harper has multiple long-term offers at more than $30 million annually. Regarding Machado, Heyman noted that while Machado was believed to have had a preference for the East coast, he will go for the best deal now, which puts the Padres firmly in the picture.

The Padres reportedly met with Machado last week. A late entrant into the sweepstakes, the club has shown the willingness to spend, signing Eric Hosmer to an eight-year, $144 million contract last year. If he goes to San Diego, Machado would be the full-time third baseman with Luis Urias handling shortstop.

Nothing appears close, but we’ll take anything resembling a spark to light the hot stove.