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McCourt files papers to advance Dodger bid

South Boston landowner Frank H. McCourt Jr. has given National League Baseball the documents required for consideration of his bid to purchase the Los Angeles Dodgers from News Corp.

 

A California executive close to the pending sale of the team to McCourt and unnamed partners for about $430 million said yesterday that a meeting with other team owners could happen by the end of the year.

A vote is possible at a scheduled Jan. 14 owners meeting in Phoenix.

Under the agreement between McCourt and News Corp., the paperwork had to be filed by the end of this year and the sale wrapped up by Jan. 31.

Questions about whether McCourt could muster the financial resources necessary to complete the deal were raised by unnamed sources on the West Coast after McCourt failed to file all the necessary paperwork with Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig as originally planned before a Nov. 20 meeting of team owners.

A Los Angeles Times story on the paper's website last night, however, quoted two unnamed baseball officials as saying a preliminary review of the paperwork, submitted a week ago, showed McCourt had met some of the basic financial requirements of a prospective team buyer.

McCourt, whose previous bid to buy the Boston Red Sox and build a new ballpark on his South Boston land failed, announced about two months ago that he is seeking to buy the Dodgers, Dodger Stadium and surrounding land, plus real estate holdings in Florida and the Dominican Republic.

The Times quoted Robert DuPuy, Major League Baseball's president and chief operating officer, as saying he met on Wednesday with McCourt, hiw wife, Jamie, and his business partner.

But he would not talk about specifics of the deal or timing.

DuPuy told the Times that he also met with News Corp. chairman Peter Chernin and that the "next step will be to try and get the McCourts with a couple members of the ownership committee next week."

The Times quoted an unnamed baseball official as saying, "Everything is there. The package is on Bud Selig's desk."

At least two-thirds of Major League Baseball owners would have to vote yes for the sale to go through.

ESPN.com reported yesterday that McCourt has been keeping up with day-to-day Dodgers operations.

Game Plan LLC Capital is handling the arrangements for McCourt.

McCourt is seeking a partner or codeveloper or possibly a buyer for his 20-plus acres in South Boston, which is being used mostly as a parking lot.

McCourt has said through others that a transaction with the land is not necessary to complete the Dodgers purchase. But, having long wanted to join the ranks of team owners, he is expected to turn his attention to the West Coast and both the team and development opportunities there.

Thomas C. Palmer Jr. can be reached at tpalmer@globe.com.

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