Steve Soboroff Responds to MLB Takeover of Dodgers
It’s Day 2 of the Dodgers Drama Delight, and we bring in Steve Soboroff. Soboroff was appointed vice chairman of the Dodgers on Tuesday and is in charge of improving the fan experience and strengthening the team’s ties to the community.
A day after Major League Baseball took over the operations and finances of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Soboroff came out swinging on behalf of beleaguered owner Frank McCourt calling the move “irresponsible.” Soboroff was especially vocal in his belief that this move was indeed a coup d’état by MLB commissioner Bud Selig.
Is McCourt being deliberately picked on?
“Yeah,” Soboroff said. “Let me think about that for a second…. YES. Obviously they are.”
It has been reported that Selig has been sitting on the proposed 20-year television rights deal worth at least $3 billion between the Dodgers and Fox which gives Soboroff fuel for the pyre.
“What teams in America have a $3 billion... $2.5 billion deal ready to go? Where does that put the Dodgers? Oh it’s in jeopardy? Come on! It puts it in the upper echelons in the financial situation of all other teams. Talk to me about something else! Don’t talk to me about his financial situation. Give me a break.”
And it was this pending deal that made Soboroff tell reporters on Tuesday during his first day at work that McCourt’s finances were stable - a belief he reiterated to reporters this afternoon via a show-and-tell presentation.
“This is a credit card,” Soboroff said as he showed his credit card. “Behind this card there isn’t a dime.
“This is an ATM card,” Soboroff displayed his ATM card. “I got money in the bank.
“Frank has money in the bank. He has a $3 billion deal with Fox.
“Not on his,” shows credit card. “He’s got it on this,” shows ATM card.
“The only thing keeping him from sticking this in the machine is this letter.”
Soboroff argued that how McCourt bought the team was irrelevant, “Whether he bought the team for cash or whether he bought the team for 110% leverage like a whole bunch of America bought their houses.”
The results were what mattered to Soboroff as he couldn’t help but make a dig on Peter O’Malley.
“What he did do is spend $150 million on a 50-year old stadium that was wasting electricity and falling apart. That’s what he did do.
“It’s irrelevant to me whether or not he paid cash for the team or was smart enough to get the team for nothing. What happens is he doubled the value of the team.”
In addition to his barbs on Selig and O’Malley, Soboroff got one in on the Wilpons who own the New York Mets.
“Let’s compare it other places. Let’s compare it other big city situation. How do you single him out and not single the Mets out?”
Soboroff attempted to present a McCourt that has changed ways. “I don’t disagree that they’ve made mistakes in the past.
“You know what happened? He had a life-changing event that would change the way that people act. A bad one. It’s sad. Although some of it was extravagant and ridiculous, divorce is sad. He’s had an experience that he’s gone through and emerged from that has changed him.
“He knows that any money he going to get is coming in here.”
The nearly 25-minute press conference meandered every which way where Soboroff even took a dig on mixed martial arts. But he did let us know he is of sound mind.
“I don’t drink. I don’t use drugs. I don’t use steroids. I have one wife. I have five kids. I’m bald. I got stitches on my nose. I’m not doing this for any reason other than to help L.A.”
So to answer some people’s question as to whether McCourt was going to go away quietly, it doesn’t look like it.
“Frank is being picked out and selected.”
Let the games begin.