We often hear in Baltimore about the desire for more local or family ownership (see Tribune/Baltimore Sun, Pimlico Race Course). But family ownership has its problems too.
Last month, Jamie McCourt, a Baltimore native who was CEO of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the highest-ranking woman in baseball, and her husband Frank, announced their seperation. On Oct. 21 Frank fired his wife and Jamie filed for divorce the following week.
On Thursday, Jamie McCourt lost her bid to be reinstated as the team’s chief executive in what is already an ugly divorce. McCourt, 55, is accused by her husband of having an affair with her bodyguard-driver, also a Dodger employee who was fired. Frank McCourt, 56, also claims she was doing a poor job in her role as chief executive.
And on top of all that, the Dodgers have 16 potential free agents this off-season, including slugger Manny Ramirez, who is deciding whether to exercise his $20 million option for next season. The team has the ninth-highest payroll in the MLB at $100 million and the team is worth $800 million.
A Superior Court commissioner still has to rule on whether the Dodgers are community property or whether they fully belong to Frank McCourt, who bought the team in 2004. The couple has been married since 1979.
If the team is community property, Jamie McCourt could be reinstated. Some say that would have an adverse effect on the team. Hmmm, you think? If they don’t want to be married anymore, I doubt they’d be able to run a business together very well. And a $100 million payroll is a lot to mess around with.
Allegations aside, McCourt’s achievements in professional baseball were pretty significant for her gender and it’s a shame it has to end in L.A. like this. But I had the chance to meet McCourt last year and if there’s one place she can go and always be loved, it’s Baltimore. And it seems the feeling is mutual.
Wonder if there’s room in the front office at Camden Yards?