A new era for the L.A. Dodgers

David Brancaccio May 2, 2012

David Brancaccio: A new era begins today for Dodgers baseball, now that the team’s former owner, Frank McCourt has his money and the record $2.15 billion purchase is now complete. The team’s new owners are doing their victory lap in front of the microphones today.

Patrick Rishe is a sports economist at Webster University in St. Louis. Prof. Rishe, good morning.

Patrick Rishe: Good morning.

Brancaccio: So fair to say that as we mark the passing of the Dodgers into new hands, Frank McCourt did pretty well here.

Rishe: He sure has. People were speculating that he would need to fetch a sales price in excess of $1.2, $1.3 billion to break even, and sure enough, I don’t think anyone expected that the final sales price would be $2.15 billion. And with the sum stake and the parking situation with the Dodgers, a lot of people are going to be re-teaching business classes on how to buy in, perhaps mismanage, and then come away very profitable.

Brancaccio: That’s an interesting point: He’s not bowing out of the complete operation. He has a stake, what, in parking, you say?

Rishe: That’s right. And so obviously, that’s going to be a moneymaker for him going into the future. I’m a little surprised that Dodgers’ new leadership were willing to throw that in, because I don’t believe that’s something they needed to do, especially not coming in at that huge purchase price. But you know, the reality is is that he’s not going to have any say over anything that has to do with the material aspects of the parking lot. He’s just basically on the back-end, earning a little bit of the revenue.

Brancaccio: Patrick Rishe, sports economist at Webster University at St. Louis. Thank you very much.

Rishe: You’re welcome.

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