One of the biggest headaches for Major League Baseball was the ownership situation for the Los Angeles Dodgers. That problem was solved this week by Magic Johnson. Showtime is leading a group that includes Mark Walter and Stan Kasten which is buying the Dodgers from Frank McCourt for $2.15 billion dollars. There is new optimism brewing in Los Angeles as it’s now Magic’s responsibility to bring the Dodgers the same success he enjoyed with the Lakers. The amount of money paid for the team may be absurd, but former Dodgers legendary manager, Tommy Lasorda is on board with the move. Tommy Lasorda joined ESPN Los Angeles with Mason & Ireland to discuss the first move that needs to be made by the new ownership group of the Los Angeles Dodgers headed by Magic Johnson, the Dodgers being a team that is close to contending for a World Series, Mark Walter and Stan Kasten in the Dodgers new ownership group and the effect Magic Johnson will have on Dodgers fans.
What’s the first order of business for this new ownership group as far as you are concerned?
“To start working on making sure we’ll get a good team and to make sure the fans recognize that they are interested. They are interested in buying the team. They spent a lot of money for the team and they want them to know they are going to buy this team in hopes of winning a championship for our fans. We have the greatest fans in all of the world.”
How close are the Dodgers from being the competitor you want to see them be?
“Well look, I like what I see down here. We got some guys that can play the game. We got some guys that can be exciting and if our pitching holds up we can win.”
What are your thoughts on the two guys the fans may not know in the new ownership group? Mark Walter and Stan Kasten?
“Well I don’t know too much about Mark Walter, but I know about Stan Kasten. I know he is an outstanding executive. I think he is an outstanding leader and I think if anyone is putting together a winning ball club he is going to be a big part of it.”
What does the presence of Magic Johnson do for Dodgers fans?
“Well Magic Johnson is there is no doubt of his popularity in Los Angeles. He was a winner when he played basketball and he can talk to some of the guys individually and collectively, tell them what it takes to win. That’s all. He’s a great guy. People love him. I’m so happy to see him involved in baseball.”