Dodgers: The view from Canada

Jeff Blair, a columnist in Toronto, briefs readers of the Globe and Mail on WTF's going on down in Los Angeles. Excerpt:

The Los Angeles Dodgers lost their city years ago. The Lakers had Kobe and Shaq, and that ensured there was carry-over from the old ‘Show Time’ days and, making matters worse, down the road the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim had become a model franchise under the guidance of erstwhile Dodgers catcher Mike Scioscia....The Dodgers' place in L.A. is very much at the heart of commissioner Bud Selig’s willingness to battle Frank McCourt over control of the team...

According to people familiar with the commissioner’s office, baseball is concerned that once a new NFL collective agreement is reached, it will only be a few seasons before the NFL puts a team back in L.A., an already-crowded sports market. Next year is the 50th anniversary of the opening of Dodger Stadium, and while the views are still breathtaking at dusk, the stadium itself is something of a faded gem. Complicating matters: baseball allowed McCourt to split off the team from Dodger Stadium, enabling McCourt’s threats to hang on to the ballpark even if he loses the team.

Dodger Stadium is the third-oldest facility in baseball, behind Fenway Park and Wrigley Field, but it is also larger – with 20,000 more in capacity than Fenway and 15,000 more than Wrigley – and that’s a bad combination for ownership unable to make improvements.

By the way, it's only been since October 14, 2009 that the whole Dodger thing has come unraveled. That was the day that Frank and Jamie McCourt announced — in the midst of the Dodgers-Phillies playoffs — that they were separated.

As the McCourts Turn

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