Bankrupt Dodgers on the market

NEW YORK — The process of finding a new owner for the Dodgers began early Wednesday when current boss Frank McCourt and Major League Baseball released a joint statement saying they had agreed to a court-supervised sale of the once-glamorous franchise.

The benefit may all be in the long term. Fans may well have to endure another season adrift as the sale works itself out.

While the sides hope for a quick deal, giving McCourt the money to pay his divorce settlement by April, MLB sales sometimes drag on for 1½ years. Once bidders are identified, the court is likely to conduct an auction.

"Baseball can choose to have their approval process move like molasses in winter or like Castor oil through a baby," said Marc Ganis, president of Sportscorp, a Chicago consulting firm.

The price likely will break the record for a baseball franchise, topping the $845 million paid by the Ricketts family for the Cubs in 2009. Mavericks co-owner Mark Cuban and Penguins co-owner Ron Burkle, who lives in California, have been mentioned as possibilities.

RAYS HONOREES: Three Rays are finalists for 2011 Players Choice Awards, which will be announced from 8-9 tonight on MLB Network: right-hander James Shields (outstanding pitcher); right-hander Jeremy Hellickson (outstanding rookie); and first baseman Casey Kotchman (comeback player). … Outfielder Mikie Mahtook and infielder Tyler Bortnick were named to the Arizona Fall League Rising Stars Game on Saturday.

CARDS SEARCH: The Cardinals, who must replace Tony La Russa as manager, asked the Phillies for permission to interview Ryne Sandberg, who managed at Triple-A Lehigh Valley last season.

Times staff writer Joe Smith contributed to this report.

Bankrupt Dodgers on the market 11/02/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 2, 2011 8:16pm]

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