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 Former G.M. of Dodgers Is Interested in Buying

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PostFormer G.M. of Dodgers Is Interested in Buying

Fred Claire, a former general manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers, said Thursday that he was part of a group that wants to buy the team. He will almost certainly be one of many potential suitors for the marquee franchise, which was placed in bankruptcy in June by its owner, Frank McCourt.

McCourt agreed to sell the team this week after vowing for months to[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] hold on despite a cash crisis, Major League Baseball’s investigation of the team’s finances and Commissioner Bud Selig’s desire to get him out.

McCourt and M.L.B. will submit a sale process to the United States Bankruptcy Court in Delaware.

Claire, the Dodgers’ general manager from 1987 to ’98, said he has so far formed a three-person management group that is seeking investors. The winner will likely have to pay between $1 billion and $1.5 billion.

“We’ve spent a lot of time in meetings, trying to raise capital and [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] talking to a number of groups,” he said by telephone. “Frankly, we’re not going to be a player in this until we have the necessary capital.”

Claire said he was asked about forming a group to buy the Dodgers by Ben Hwang, a former Dodgers batboy who is a biotechnology executive. Since then, they have added Andy Dolich, a former executive with the Oakland Athletics, Memphis Grizzlies, San Francisco 49ers and Golden State Warriors.

Claire, who was the Dodgers’ general manager when they last won the [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] World Series in 1988, said he was saddened by the current state of the team. “I spent 30 years of my life there,” he said. “This isn’t fun. I know what they once were.”

He was dismissed in 1998, soon after Rupert Murdoch’s Fox Entertainment Group bought the Dodgers from the O’Malley family.

Claire acknowledged that without very wealthy investors, his bid will not go anywhere.

“I’m not waiting for the phone to ring,” he said. “We’re out there giving our story and letting people know what we believe. We need someone with the lead role, as principal, with the financial wherewithal. That’s not me, Ben or Andy. I believe someone can look at what we’re striving for and want to be a part of it.”

HODGES ON VETERANS’ BALLOT The former Dodgers first [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] baseman Gil Hodges and General Manager Buzzie Bavasi and the former Athletics owner Charlie Finley are among 10 candidates for the Hall of Fame who will be on the veterans committee ballot next month.

Ken Boyer, Jim Kaat, Minnie Minoso, Tony Oliva, Allie Reynolds, Ron Santo and Luis Tiant also will be on the “Golden Era” ballot, which will be voted on by the 16-member committee on Dec. 5 at the winter meetings in Dallas.

This year’s committee will consider candidates from the so-called “Golden Era,” from 1947-72.

Candidates must receive votes on 75 percent of the ballot to be elected. Those elected will be inducted on July 22 along with any players voted in by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America on Jan. 9.

The committee includes the Hall of Famers Hank Aaron, Al Kaline, Ralph Kiner, Tommy Lasorda, Juan Marichal, Brooks Robinson, Don Sutton and Billy Williams; the team executives Paul Beeston, Bill DeWitt, Roland Hemond and Gene Michael; the retired executive Al Rosen and the news media members Dick Kaegel, Jack O’Connell and Dave Van Dyck. (AP)
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CANO STARS IN EXHIBITION Robinson Cano of the Yankees doubled in a run in the seventh inning to help a Major League Baseball all-star team beat Taiwan’s national team, 5-3, in the second game of a five-game series in Taichung, Taiwan. (AP)
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