Just when it looked like the high-asset divorce case involving Frank and Jamie McCourt — think Los Angeles Dodgers — was about to wind down and finally fade away, Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig stepped in to ensure that it wouldn’t.
Readers of our blog posts are probably familiar with the McCourt’s divorce dispute, which has featured centrally in the news for nearly a year now. We last provided an update in an April 5 post, when the fundamental question confronting Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Scott Gordon was this: Who owns the team? Frank McCourt has always maintained that he does, outright and as separate property. Jamie McCourt begs to differ, saying that she is an equal owner.
After many months of wrangling, the couple finally inked a settlement last week, which apparently involved about $3 billion, nearly $400 million of which would have gone to Frank McCourt up front.
The operative words there are “would have gone,” because Selig — whose approval was required — balked at the idea of McCourt personally getting such a large chunk of money at a time when the payment of Dodgers players’ salaries and the very future of the club is uncertain.
Selig flatly rejected the settlement, noting that, “The transaction is structured to facilitate the further diversion of Dodgers assets for the personal needs of Mr. McCourt.” Selig added that this “would have the effect of mortgaging the future of the franchise to the long-term detriment of the club and its fans.”
Selig wasn’t about to let that happen. Now it’s back to the drawing board, once again, with the McCourts saying they will “explore vigorously” all options available to them.
Related Resource: Miami Herald, “Selig rejects Dodgers’ deal with Fox” June 20, 2011