I saw that the Dewey & LeBoeuf law firm is folding. That’s huge news and the latest indication of just how farkakte the economics of the legal business are. But I had forgotten who D&L’s most recent high profile client was. Here’s Steve Dilbeck of the L.A. Times:
News has come from back east that the law firm of Dewey & LeBoeuf is filing for bankruptcy. Besides the little detail that this is the largest law firm to go under in U.S. history, there is this one other notable fact: The law firm going bankrupt is the same law firm that handled Frank McCourt’s bankruptcy of the Dodgers … Hey, I know a guy flush with $1 billion who might be able to give Dewey a loan. You could argue he even owes them.
Sadly, we can’t pin this on McCourt. Rather, we can pin it on a ridiculous compensation system that has law firm partners promising themselves insane draws despite the fact that revenues won’t support it anymore because business clients aren’t as dumb as to simply rubber stamp every legal bill that comes in to the accounting office like they did back in the 80s.
Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be corporate lawyers …
An interesting tidbit today from The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, who noted that ongoing talks between agent Scott Boras and the Padres have focused more on starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel than slugger Bryce Harper. Earlier this week, there were conflicting reports on the Padres’ level of interest in Harper — MLB Network’s Jon Heyman heard the club had not ruled out another big signing after getting Manny Machado, while Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune talked to multiple sources who believed otherwise — but any agreement between the two is looking unlikelier by the day.
As for Keuchel, Rosenthal cautions that a potential deal is still a “longshot,” especially as the team has other, cheaper options in mind. The 31-year-old southpaw turned down a qualifying offer from the Astros last year and is likely angling for something north of the five-year, $90 million contract extension he rejected from the club in 2016. He’s coming off of another solid performance in Houston, where he went 12-11 in 34 starts with a 3.74 ERA, 2.6 BB/9, 6.7 SO/9, and 3.6 fWAR through 204 2/3 innings in 2018.
While Keuchel has failed to garner substantial interest around the league this offseason, Heyman points out that the Phillies are looking to establish themselves as frontrunners for the lefty — and they’re far less likely to have hang-ups about his asking price, too.