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Tag:Dodgers
Posted on: January 30, 2012 1:05 pm
Edited on: January 30, 2012 1:06 pm
 

Korean company among Dodgers bidders

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Korean retailer E-Land leads a consortium that is on the short list of Dodgers bidders, Yohap News Agency reported on Monday (via Reuters).

This weekend, the Los Angeles Times reported that at least eight bidders had advanced from the more than 12 initial bids. Already out include Mark Cuban, as well as the group including Steve Garvey and Orel Hershiser.

Dodgers in transition
Joining the Korean group in on the bidding is thought to believe a group led by Magic Johnson, another led by real estate developer Rick Caruso (that includes Joe Torre) and another by hedge fundmanager Steven Cohen.

The total cost is expected to be at least $1.5 million.

Major League Baseball has agreed to approve as many as 10 bidders, with Frank McCourt revealing the winning bid by April 1.

The Korean company wouldn't be the first Asian owners in baseball, Nintendo owns the Seattle Mariners.

Baseball is popular in Korea and its national team reached the finals of the last World Baseball Classic, losing to rival Japan in the championship game. Los Angeles also has a huge Korean American population -- more than 300,000, according to the 2009 American Community Survey.

The Dodgers also signed Chan-Ho Park, who was the first South Korean-born player in big league history when he debuted with Los Angeles in 1994.

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Posted on: January 28, 2012 11:13 am
Edited on: January 28, 2012 1:07 pm
 

Dodgers narrow bidding list; Cuban out

By Matt Snyder

The field of potential next Dodgers owners has been narrowed, and the list no longer includes Mark Cuban, reports Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times. The Associated Press reports Cuban refused to say whether he was in or out while at his Mavericks' game Friday night. UPDATE: Shaikin has now tweeted that the Garvey-Hershiser group is also out of the bidding.
Dodgers in transition

Shaikin also has reported that "at least eight bidders have advanced in the bidding and are being called finalists (latimes.com), including the groups led by former Lakers superstar Magic Johnson, real estate developer Rick Caruso (his group includes Joe Torre) and hedge fund manager Steven Cohen.

The initial bids -- from more than 12 groups -- were submitted Monday to the financial firm handling the sale by current owner Frank McCourt.

"Each of the preliminary bids has been reviewed carefully by the Dodgers and its financial adviser Blackstone. Blackstone is notifying all of the bidders as to which ones will and which ones will not advance in the sales process," the Dodgers said in a statement.

"The preliminary round of bidding has underscored the robust nature of the sales process, the significant purchase opportunity which the Dodgers represent, and the enormous value that the sale of the Dodgers, including their media assets, will generate."

McCourt put the team in bankruptcy last year and reached an agreement with Major League Baseball to sell the team by April 30, the deadline for him to make a $131 million divorce payment to former wife Jamie McCourt.

CBSSports.com insider Jon Heyman reports that he's heard at least one bid is in the $1.5 billion range, so McCourt could end up approaching a sale price of $2 billion before it's all said and done.

Major League Baseball has agreed to approve up to 10 bidders while McCourt has agreed to reveal the winning bidder by April 1.

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Posted on: January 27, 2012 9:17 pm
 

Report: Brad Penny has offer from Japanese team

Brad PennyBy C. Trent Rosecrans

Right-hander Brad Penny has an offer from the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks in Japan, according to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com.

FREE AGENT TRACKER

Penny, 33, was 11-11 with a 5.30 ERA in 31 starts for the Tigers last season. Penny made just one appearance in the postseason for the Tigers, starting Game 6 of the ALCS against the Rangers and was pounded for five runs on seven hits in just 1 2/3 innings, giving up homers to Michael Young and Nelson Cruz in a 15-5 loss to Texas.

In 12 seasons with the Marlins, Dodgers, Red Sox, Giants, Cardinals and Tigers, he's 119-99 with a 4.23 ERA.

The two-time All-Star has also heard from two big league teams, according to the report.

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Posted on: January 27, 2012 6:59 pm
Edited on: January 27, 2012 9:18 pm
 

Video: Mattingly and son in trick shot video

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Warning to all bears in the greater Evansville, Ind., area -- don't wear a Giants hat. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly doesn't like that.

Or at least he doesn't in this video with his son, Preston.



These trick shot videos have been around a while, and while some of the tricks are impressive, I'm never sure why these guys are so excited about making them. If you have seven minutes worth of trick shots -- no matter how impressive -- you pretty much expect to make some, right? And doesn't it get old after a while?

Oh well, at least the younger Mattingly, 24, signed a minor-league contract with the Yankees earlier this month as a minor-league free agent. The 2006 first-round pick of the Dodgers hit .232/.281/.354 at two levels of Class A ball last season.

The video, though, is for a good cause. The group, which also includes Orioles minor leaguer Kipp Schutz and Indiana tight end Max Dedmond, used the video to sell T-shirts raising money for Evansville Boys and Girls Club, according to the Evansville Courier & Press. The T-shirts feature the bear mascot of Mattingly's alma mater, Central High School. The bear is named Bearwinkle, hence the Trickwinkle name of the group raising money. The group has already donated "around $1,000" to the Boys and Girls Club, with more on the way.

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Posted on: January 24, 2012 1:21 pm
 

J.D. Drew likely to retire from baseball



By Matt Snyder


After 14 seasons and truckloads of cash, J.D. Drew is likely going to retire, CBSSports.com insider Jon Heyman has learned. Heyman notes Drew was only going to play if he found the "perfect" spot, and that evidently isn't going to happen.

Drew, 36, did have a very good offensive career. He hit .278/.384/.489, good for a 125 OPS-plus, with 242 homers, 944 runs scored and 273 doubles. He finished sixth in MVP voting in 2004 -- his lone season with the Braves -- and was an All-Star in 2008. His career 45.9 Wins Above Replacement (WAR) is really good as well. He also won a World Series ring with the 2007 Red Sox.

On the other hand, many seem to scoff when hearing Drew's name and immediately think "overrated." That's because, in some ways, Drew's career could be considered disappointing. He entered the league as the top prospect in baseball, one of the most heavily hyped in the past 20 years. His agent, Scott Boras, continually got him paid like a megastar as well, as Drew accumulated $108,091,688 (Baseball-Reference.com) in his 14-year career. That's an average of roughly $7.72 million per season, which is pretty tough to do in the MLB system.

In addition to the hefty salary, Drew's inability to stay completely healthy contributed to the stigma that he was overrated. He never appeared in more than 146 games in a season and averaged just 470 plate appearances per campaign from 1999-2011.

This all led to Drew being one of the most polarizing players in baseball. He could have been one of the greats, but instead he's largely viewed as an overpaid, injury-prone slugger with great rate stats.

I would expect Drew to be on the Hall of Fame ballot five years from now -- I mean, Bill Mueller, Brad Radke, Phil Nevin and Tony Womack were on the ballot this year -- but just that one time, as he'll surely get less than five percent of the vote.

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Posted on: January 23, 2012 2:44 pm
 

Sorting through potential Dodgers bidders



By Matt Snyder


With the wildly unpopular Frank McCourt headed out the door, the Los Angeles Dodgers are for sale. Bids are actually due Monday and McCourt has agreed to make a decision by April 1.

Via Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times, here is a list of the prospective bidders:

Magic Johnson/Stan Kasten: Kasten has been president of the Braves and is the Nationals' current president. And we all know what Magic means to L.A.

Joe Torre/Rick Caruso: The former Dodgers manager and current vice president of the MLB heads up the group.

Steven Cohen/Arn Tellem: Cohen, a hedge fund manager, is one of the richest men in America while Tellem is a high-profile agent.

Mark Cuban: The Dallas Mavericks owner finally got his championship last NBA season, so maybe it's time to get an MLB team? Note that he's tried in the past -- most famously with the Cubs -- to buy a team. It's just that past reports have indicated Bud Selig and several other owners don't want Cuban to join their club.

Tom Barrack: Shaikin reports Barrack has owned a japanese baseball team and a french soccer team in the past.

Ron Burkle: While he can't match Cohen, Burkle is also a member of the Forbes 400, sporting an estimated net worth of $3.2 billion. He's a part owner of the NHL's Pittsburgh Penguins.

Stanley Gold/Disney family: Gold is the president and CEO of Disney's private investment company. The Disney name doesn't really need any further explanation.

Peter O'Malley: The former Dodgers owner apparently wants back in.

Tony Ressler: He's an investor and minority owner of the Brewers.

Dennis Gilbert: The former agent lost out on the bidding for the Rangers.

Alan Casden: He's a self-made real estate developer in Beverly Hills, so that seems like a good fit. Shaikin reports, however, that "MLB wasn't comfortable" with Casden last time he placed a bid on the club.

Tom Golisano: He used to own the Buffalo Sabres of the NHL.

Fred Claire: He was the GM of the Dodgers from 1987-1998.

Steve Garvey/Orel Hershiser: Baseball fans are obviously familiar with the Dodgers connection here.

Fox or Time Warner: We know the TV money is big, but Shaikin reports neither group really wants the team -- they just don't want the other side to buy the team. So each might bid. Try untangling that web of logic.

The Field: The bidding process is not public, so it wouldn't be a total shock of the eventual Dodgers owner was a group or person not on this list.

While it's hard to tell how this entire process will shake out, it has to be a relief to Major League Baseball and Dodgers fans that the next owner is simply going to be ABFM (Anyone But Frank McCourt).

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Posted on: January 19, 2012 9:13 am
 

Would You Rather Have: Kershaw or Price?



By Matt Snyder


For the latest installment in our ongoing offseason series, let's take a look at two similar left-handed starting pitchers. They're both under age 27, both made their respective debuts in 2008, were both drafted in the first round and both have already had a top two finish in Cy Young voting (one won it). One plays in the AL East, the other in the NL West. That's right, it's Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers against David Price of the Rays.

The case for Kershaw

Well, gee, where to begin? How about with a 2011 Cy Young Award -- coming in a season where Kershaw won the pitching triple crown, leading the NL with 21 wins, a 2.28 ERA and 248 strikeouts. Also impressive were Kershaw's 233 1/3 innings pitched, five complete games, two shutouts while sporting an NL-best 0.98 WHIP. On top of all that, Kershaw took home the Gold Glove. He can even hit, as the .225 batting average and 10 runs scored is pretty impressive for a pitcher.

Better yet, Kershaw is only turning 24 this coming March and has already logged over 700 innings in his young career. We're talking a guy who could be a legitimate Cy Young candidate for the next decade-plus.

The case for Price

Upon first glance at the historically basic pitching categories, Price had a down year in 2011. He went 12-13 with a 3.49 ERA. This came on the heels of a season where he went 19-6 with a 2.72 ERA and finished second in AL Cy Young voting. Advanced metrics like FIP and xFIP, however, say Price simply had worse luck in how things shook out. And it wasn't like he was bad anyway. He struck out 218 batters in 224 1/3 innings and sported an impressive 1.14 WHIP. And at age 26, it's very reasonable to expect Price to have a similar looking W/L and ERA in 2012 to what we saw in 2010.

Would You Rather Have
Still, I can hear the cries already. This is a stupid "comparison" because Kershaw's numbers like W/L and ERA dwarfed Price's in 2011, right? Well, the opposite was true in 2010 and let us also consider the competition. Remember, Kershaw is in the NL West while Price is in the AL East.

Kershaw made nine of his 34 starts against the Giants or Padres -- and the only worse offense in baseball belonged to the Mariners. He made two more starts against the Astros. In those 11 starts against dreadful offenses, Kershaw went nuts, to the tune of a 10-0 record and 1.33 ERA. Meanwhile, Price made 12 starts against the top three offenses -- in terms of runs scored -- in baseball: The Red Sox, Yankees and Rangers. Of Price's 34 starts, 21 came against teams with a winning record.

It's fair to point out that Kershaw had good success against the Diamondbacks and Tigers while Price was knocked around by the Twins and A's, for example. But the general point is that Price faced much tougher offenses throughout 2011.

Our call

There is absolutely no wrong answer, but I'm going Kershaw. It might be surprising after those last few paragraphs, but I was merely trying to sell just how tough this decision should be. Glancing merely at the Cy Young voting and traditional stats from 2011 says Kershaw is an easy choice, but it's far from easy. In fact, my choice is based merely on the roughly 2 1/2 year difference in age. Otherwise they are basically the same to me, as the competition level evens out their numbers -- not to mention factoring in 2010.

Fan Vote:



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Posted on: January 14, 2012 2:37 pm
Edited on: January 14, 2012 3:17 pm
 

Would You Rather Have: Upton or Kemp?



By C. Trent Rosecrans


We love interaction here at Eye On Baseball, comments can make us think and we like reading what you think. Sometimes you bring up a point we hadn't thought about and make us re-think our positions or reinforce our views. Often, you help copy edit and fact check, those contributions are equally appreciated. We love good, intelligent comments. Really, one of the reasons for the Would You Rather Have series was to get more involved with our readers and encourage disussion. So far, it's succeeded and we hope it continues.

That said, the one criticism of yesterday's comparison of Troy Tulowitzki and Evan Longoria made no sense to me -- some commenters said we couldn't compare a third baseman and a shortstop. Really? Just hours after posting that, the Yankees and Mariners played their own game of Would You Rather Have, comparing a catcher/DH and a pitcher -- and nobody told them they couldn't do it.

Sometimes the pairings we come up with will be players of the same position, other days they may have other things in common. Yesterday we had college teammates and today we're looking at two of the best talents in the game, and two of the top four finishers in last year's National League MVP vote -- Justin Upton and Matt Kemp. The pairjust happen to play in the same division, but different outfield positions.

The case for Upton

Sometimes it's hard to believe Upton is just turned 24 at the end of August, it seems like he's been around for a long time now. And really, he has been talked about in baseball circles for quite a while. The younger brother of the Rays' B.J. Upton, the younger Upton has been on the radar since high school because of his own play, but also because his older brother went second overall in the 2002 draft. In 2005, Upton topped his brother by going first overall.

It didn't take long for Upton to show up on the big stage, arriving in the big leagues before his 20th birthday. In the four subsequent seasons, he's improved and blossomed into one of the game's best players, As a 23-year-old in 2011, Upton hit .289/.369/.529 while setting career-highs in hits (171), doubles (39), homers (31), RBI (88) and stolen bases (21), in addition to the best on-base percentage of his career. He's also turned out to be one of the best defensive right fielders in the game, winning the Fielding Bible Award for 2011.

What the numbers don't show is just how much room there is for Upton to improve. Putting up those kinds of results could be a career-year for many fine players, but Upton can be even better, which is scary.

The case for Kemp

Kemp, like Upton, appears to have all the talent in the world. And 2011 was when he put it all together, showing that he can not just be a very good player, but an MVP-level player. As much as anything, his teammates kept him from winning an MVP in 2011, as he put up a 10 WAR according to Baseball-Reference.com on the strength of his .324/.399/.586 season. In addition to leading the National League in homers (39), runs (115) total bases (353) and OPS+ (171), he led the majors with 126 RBI. Kemp missed out on the MVP, but did win the Silver Slugger and a Gold Glove (although advanced numbers don't like his defense as much as the voting bloc of managers and coaches do, apparently).

The Dodgers signed Kemp to an eight-year, $160 million extension after the 2011 season -- but if he continues to put up the numbers he did in 2011, the 27-year-old will be well worth the cost. Upton signed an extension before the 2010 season that will keep him in Arizona for the next four years at a total of $45.25 million, with a $2 million bump in 2012 over 2011, a $3 million raise in 2013 and a $4.5 million increase in 2014, before maxing out at $14.5 million in 2015. That's the thing with supreme talent, if you want to keep it, you must pay, and neither of these players will be living paycheck to paycheck anytime soon.

Our call

It's pretty much a coinflip. On one hand, you have the production and cost certainty of Kemp, knowing you'll have him through the 2019 season. On the other hand, there's the dream of just how good Upton can be, but then risk losing him right after his 28th birthday following the 2015 season and seeing him star elsewhere. If I were in a gambling mood, I'd take Upton. But as it is, I'm feeling conservative (or as conservative as you can feel when doling out $160 million) and take Kemp, hoping that 2011 was the start of a trend. Ask me again in 15 minutes and I could change my tune.

Fan Vote: Would you rather have Upton or Kemp on your favorite team?



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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com