Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig has rejected a proposed television deal between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Fox that voids a recent divorce settlement between team owner Frank McCourt and his ex-wife, Jamie McCourt.
In a statement released Monday, Selig said the TV contract would further divert Dodger assets to McCourt's "personal needs."
"Given the magnitude of the transaction, such a diversion of assets would have the effect of mortgaging the future of the franchise to the long-term detriment of the club and its fans," Selig wrote.
The McCourts reached an agreement Friday that was contingent on Selig's approval of a TV deal with Fox reported to be worth up to $3 billion. Under the settlement, Frank McCourt would receive $385 million upfront. However, the settlement terms showed about $150 million would be used toward paying attorneys' fees, existing debt and an account that would be monitored by the divorce judge.
Messages left for both Frank and Jamie McCourt's spokesmen were not immediately returned. On Friday, Frank McCourt said he had met criteria set forth by Major League Baseball in order for the TV contract to get approval.
The former couple has been embroiled in a contentious divorce where their lavish spending habits were exposed.
In April, Major League Baseball took the extraordinary step of assuming control of the troubled franchise. Former Texas Rangers President Tom Schieffer was appointed to monitor the team on behalf of Selig, who said he took the action because he was concerned about the team's finances and how the Dodgers are being run.