Dodgers, Fox settle TV rights dispute

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The last possible thing preventing Frank McCourt from meeting his deadline to sell the Dodgers by April 30 was the ongoing litigation he and the Dodgers had with Fox over the Dodgers’ desire to auction off future broadcast rights prior to a sale.  That potential barrier is gone now, as the Dodgers and Fox have settled the lawsuit, with the Dodgers agreeing not to sell TV rights until after November 30 as Fox had desired.  Bill Shaikin:

The impetus for the settlement was the ruling last month that stayed the Dodgers from selling their television rights along with the team. U.S. District Judge Leonard Stark indicated he would probably make that ruling permanent.

So, yeah, when that thing you want looks to be impossible, it makes sense to give up fighting for that thing you want.

In other Dodgers news, there’s a new billionaire mogul type who is reported to be interested in buying the team. His name is Tom Barrack, he’s in real estate and he used to play rugby at USC.  You can read all about him here. Frankly, you’ve seen one former rugby-playing real estate mogul, you’ve seen them all.

Pirates activate Starling Marte

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Pirates outfielder Starling Marte is back in the lineup after the team reinstated him from the 10-day disabled list on Saturday. Marte served the bare minimum on the DL after making a rapid recovery from the right oblique strain that sidelined him several weeks ago.

Prior to landing on the disabled list, the 29-year-old outfielder was off to a strong start. He slashed a robust .308/.366/.503 with six home runs, 10 stolen bases and an .869 OPS in 175 plate appearances with the team. This is the first time he’s dealt with an oblique issue, and the first DL stint he’s served since he suffered a bout of back tightness in 2016. While he has yet to prove he can bounce back to his pre-injury production levels, his quick recovery bodes well for a successful return to major-league play.

In a corresponding move, outfielder Jose Osuna was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis. The move came as somewhat of a surprise, given that the Pirates elected to retain top prospect outfielder Austin Meadows rather than the more established Osuna. Meadows was recalled from Triple-A in the wake of Marte’s injury and has only played seven games at the major league level so far, but he’s already made a strong impression: he went 13-for-29 with three home runs, two stolen bases and five RBI since his call-up on May 18.