Thursday’s McCourt Courtroom Drama Was Just Too Bizarre to be True

During Thursday’s off day for the Dodgers Frank and Jamie were back at it in court yet again. The days action was centered around a filing made by Jamie’s attorney’s opposing Frank’s attempts to reduce his ex-wife’s monthly spousal support.

The material provided by lawyers from both sides was “pure gold” as Kenny Bania would say referring to Jerry Seinfeld’s Ovaltine jokes.

First came this nugget from Jamie’s lawyers about Frank’s battle with MLB:

“Frank McCourt would rather wage a “jihad” with Major League Baseball than continue to honor his court-ordered obligations to support his ex-wife”

Jihad? Seriously? Did a ridiculously priced attorney actually use a jihad reference in court to describe Frank vs. MLB. Did I miss something? Do Jamie’s attorney’s actually believe Frank and his crew are waging:

“A holy war against infidels undertaken by Muslims in defence of the Islamic faith?”

That is the literal definition of the word jihad, and by the way I’m going to go out on a limb and just assume Frank hasn’t recently become a Muslim. If he has then I apologize, but if not then Jamie’s attorney’s comments are tremendously insensitive and inappropriate. And as terrible as their first verbal assault is it’s not even close to the worst of the day.

The next “Open mouth insert foot” comment comes from Frank’s side who made the following claim in reference to MLB Commissioner Bud Selig:

“The claim (By MLB) that $100 million was taken out of the Dodgers over the course of seven years is patently false, according to the filing. Moreover, even taking the Commissioner’s false claim that $100 million was taken out of the Dodgers at face value, it is difficult to understand how the Commissioner can complain about this when he pays himself a salary of approximately $20 million a year — meaning that he has taken out between $120 million and $140 million from baseball revenues during the same period that he complains about $100 million being taken out by the owner of a team.”

Really? Did you catch the slip up there? Initially the attorney denies that the $100 million was taken out of the Dodgers, then later says the commish took more money during the same time period than the owner that he “complains about $100 million being taken out by the owner of a team.” Not allegedly being taken out of the team, but “$100 million being taken out by the owner of a team.”  Talk about your unfortunate Freudian slip, oops.

However, MLB’s response is actually classic, as Executive V.P. Rob Manfred countered the above with:

“The claim that Mr. McCourt took $100 million is patently false. He took a lot more than that. Unlike Mr. McCourt, the commissioner does not engage in self-dealings. Whatever the commissioner receives is determined and approved by the clubs.”

At least someone had something reasonable to say.

Finally the piece de resistance from Ryan Kirkpatrick an attorney for Frank, (compliments of Steve Dilbeck at the L.A. Times) really there’s so much good stuff here I’ll just stick to the script:

“Jamie’s lifestyle is excessive and cannot be sustained.  She has seven homes, and she refuses to sell or lease any of them. Yet she has the audacity to assert that Frank should borrow more money, and sell his own assets, in order to continue paying her over $600,000 a month to maintain her lifestyle.

Jamie wants it all — to run the team, to sell the team and take half the proceeds for herself, to have Frank pay for her seven homes and her lifestyle — yet she fails to acknowledge important facts:

  • Frank does not have the liquidity to sustain her lifestyle, especially more than $400,000 a month for the mortgage and related costs for her seven homes, and $225,000 a month for her ’living expenses.’
  • The Court has not determined that she has any ownership in the team.
  • The Dodgers are currently in bankruptcy, an occurrence she helped precipitate by sponsoring a relentless campaign to disrupt the team’s operations and relationships with MLB.
  • All the of the acts that MLB has complained of occurred prior to 2009, when she was an officer of the Dodgers.  Indeed, the vast majority of the distributions about which MLB has complained went to Jamie’s homes.

So according to Mr. Kirkpatrick the entire mess the Dodgers are in is entirely Jamie’s fault. She “precipitated a relentless campaign to disrupt the team’s operations and relationship with MLB?” That’s rich, especially considering all of the “nice” things Frank had to say about Bud Selig (see above) the past few months. Remember the “Deal with the Devil comment?”

“All of the acts MLB has complained of occurred when she was an officer of the club.”  But wasn’t Frank the boss during this time-frame? We’re really supposed to believe he didn’t know anything about the “vast majority of distributions,” that “went to Jamie’s homes?”

But the absolute best and my personal favorite is the very last statement from Mr. Kirkpatrick:

“It is clear that her views and positions in this case are detached from reality. Her lifestyle is unsustainable and she needs to come to grips with that fact.”

This from the attorney representing the bankrupt owner who spends $40,000 per month on rent. Hey Kettle my name is Pot and by the way you are black. You couldn’t make this stuff up if you tried. I’m sure these comments will do wonders towards improving the relationship between Frank and MLB during the bankruptcy proceedings.

Oh and by the way the trade deadline is fast approaching, and the Blue Jays stole Colby Rasmus from the Cardinals. Surely the Dodgers could have put together just as good if not a better package. After all the Dodgers gave up on Edwin Jackson in the first place while he was still in his early 20′s for some reason. ESPN’s Keith Law  summed up the trade by saying:

“The Blue Jays give up four arms, at least three of whom are just relievers, plus a fringy big leaguer in Corey Patterson and receive center fielder Colby Rasmus”

It’s not like the Dodgers could use a 24 year old former top rated prospect who they would have control over for several years right? Yet despite having some assets that other teams actually want the Dodgers have done nothing so far. Let’s hope they don’t miss out on someone else like Rasmus because Hiroki Kuroda likes L.A. so much, if that’s the case then just trade him to the Angels.

Topics: Angels, Bud Selig, Cardinals, Colby Rasmus, Frank McCourt, Hiroki Kuroda, Jamie McCourt, Los Angeles Dodgers, Major League Baseball, Toronto Blue Jays

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