LOS ANGELES – Up against a payroll deadline and the potential seizure of his team, Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt has had recent conversations with Major League Baseball officials about salvaging his ownership of the franchise, sources said Friday night.
The dialogue – between McCourt and the league, and between McCourt's lawyers and the league's lawyers – has focused on McCourt's willingness to sell a stake in the Dodgers in order to keep the team afloat, much as Fred Wilpon has extended his ownership of the New York Mets.
Sources close to the club said they did not know if McCourt had the funds to meet next week's payroll.
Commissioner Bud Selig rejected a proposed media rights deal with Fox on Monday, three days after McCourt reached a divorce settlement with ex-wife Jamie. The settlement was contingent upon approval of the Fox contract, however.
In the wake of Selig's decision, McCourt's attorney, Robert Sacks, called for Selig to meet with McCourt in an effort to seek a financial compromise or risk litigation.
McCourt has not spoken directly to Selig, a source said.
After months of saying he would not consider selling a piece of the Dodgers, McCourt has received numerous inquiries from parties willing to buy in, said the source.
Selig has been adamant in his refusal to allow future club earnings to be used toward past debt, including McCourt's divorce.
It is unknown if any of the recent dialogue has resulted in progress against McCourt's tenuous hold on the club.
- Frank McCourt