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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.

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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 7:16pm]
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