Frank McCourt is also trying to sell the Los Angeles Marathon

4 Comments

Embattled owner Frank McCourt agreed to sell the Dodgers earlier this week, but Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports that he is also entertaining offers for the Los Angeles Marathon.

McCourt has owned the marathon for the past three years, introducing the popular “Stadium to the Sea” route, but Howard Sunkin, senior vice president of the McCourt Group, told Shaikin that he decided to sell the event earlier this summer.

“Frank made a determination several months ago that he needed to concentrate on the Dodgers,” Sunkin said Friday. “We’re listening to offers. We’ll continue to evaluate it.”

While McCourt expects the Dodgers to sell for more than $1.2 billion at auction, two racing industry executives told Shaikin that the marathon would probably sell for less than $20 million. Of course, the marathon is small potatoes compared to the worth of the Dodgers, but this is a sign that he remains hard up for cash.

Zack Cozart thinks the way the Rays have been using Sergio Romo is bad for baseball

Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Rays started Sergio Romo on back-to-back days and if that sounds weird to you, you’re not alone. Romo, of course, was the star closer for the Giants for a while, helping them win the World Series in 2012 and ’14. He’s been a full-time reliever dating back to 2006, when he was at Single-A.

In an effort to prevent lefty Ryan Yarbrough from facing the righty-heavy top of the Angels’ lineup (Zack Cozart, Mike Trout, Justin Upton), Romo started Saturday’s game, pitching the first inning before giving way to Yarbrough in the second. Romo struck out the side, in fact. The Rays went on to win 5-3.

The Rays did it again on Sunday afternoon, starting Romo. This time, he got four outs before giving way to Matt Andriese. Romo walked two without giving up a hit while striking out three. The Angels managed to win 5-2 however.

Despite Sunday’s win, Cozart wasn’t a happy camper with the way the Rays used Romo. Via Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic, Cozart said, “It was weird … It’s bad for baseball, in my opinion … It’s spring training. That’s the best way to explain it.”

It’s difficult to see merit in Cozart’s argument. It’s not like the Rays were making excessive amounts of pitching changes; they used five on Saturday and four on Sunday. The games lasted three hours and three hours, 15 minutes, respectively. The average game time is exactly three hours so far this season. I’m having trouble wondering how else Cozart might mean the strategy is bad for baseball.

It seems like the real issue is that Cozart is afraid of the sport changing around him. The Rays, like most small market teams, have to find their edges in slight ways. The Rays aren’t doing this blindly; the strategy makes sense based on their opponents’ starting lineup. The idea of valuing on-base percentage was scoffed at. Shifting was scoffed at and now every team employs them to some degree. Who knows if starting a reliever for the first three or four outs will become a trend, but it’s shortsighted to write it off at first glance.