New Dodgers exec says Selig’s move ‘irresponsible’

A newly hired Los Angeles Dodgers executive criticized Bud Selig

on Thursday, calling the baseball commissioner’s move to take

control of the team ”irresponsible.”

Vice chairman Steve Soboroff held a news conference during a 5-3

win over Atlanta in 12 innings at Dodger Stadium to assail Selig’s

actions.

Major League Baseball took over day-to-day operations of the

Dodgers on Wednesday because owner Frank McCourt’s troubled

finances and unresolved divorce settlement have seemingly paralyzed

the franchise.

”All this momentum is building and then all of sudden this

letter comes in and says, ‘You don’t have any money. You don’t have

this or that.’ I think it was irresponsible,” Soboroff said.

”To me, if you’re going to send somebody out here to take

something over, you don’t write a letter that says, ‘Gee whiz,

here’s all these problems with you and here’s everything else, but

don’t worry, later on in the week we’re going to send somebody else

out.’ You do it the same day. … What are you supposed to do for

four days?” he said.

Selig is expected to soon appoint a new head of the Dodgers.

Soboroff was hired this week to improve the fan experience at

Dodger Stadium and help with ties to the community.

Soboroff is currently board chairman of both the Weingart

Foundation and the EXPO Center in Exposition Park. He is a former

president of the Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Commission, was

senior adviser to former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan and made

a mayoral run in 2001.

The Dodgers, Soboroff said, are in good shape from a financial

standpoint.

”Frank has money in the bank. He has a $3 billion deal with

Fox,” Soboroff said. ”Can’t we talk to the commissioner? Can’t we

talk to the people that are going to vote on this?”

Selig’s move came after The Los Angeles Times reported this week

that McCourt had arranged a $30 million loan from Fox, the team’s

television partner. Selig has not approved a $200 million loan from

Fox to the club, which was first proposed by the Dodgers last

summer, and the Times said the money was needed to make

payroll.

The messy divorce between McCourt and wife Jamie, the team’s

former chief executive officer, has been a cloud hanging over the

121-year-old franchise.

Soboroff said he joined the Dodgers to help the city.

”I’m doing this because I think it’s the best thing for me to

do for LA,” Soboroff said. ”I think Frank McCourt is a different

person now moving forward than he was before, or I wouldn’t risk

having people of your quality looking at a guy like me, who has

spent my life helping Big Brothers and all these things, saying,

‘What are you doing? Have you lost your mind?’

”I don’t drink. I don’t use drugs. I don’t use steroids. I have

one wife. I have five kids. I’m bald, I got stitches in my nose.

I’m not doing this for any reason than to help LA,” he said. ”And

I’d love to show the commissioner what’s going on here.”