Los Angeles Dodgers owner (for now) Frank McCourt made his first public appearance Monday since agreeing to sell the team, just hours after the news broke that center fielder Matt Kemp was close to signing a $160 million contract extension.
McCourt was at Mona Park in Compton with Kemp for a dedication to a youth baseball field.
The Los Angeles Times has some highlights from McCourt’s comments to the media:
What he would like say to the fans: “I’m very grateful to the fans. They have been phenomenal to me and my family since the day we arrived in L.A. I know the last couple years were very, very difficult. I’m very, very sorry about that. We’re going to move forward and handle the situation now in as professional a way as possible and make sure the baton is passed here in a classy way.”
What he has endured the last two years: “It’s been tough. It’s been a tough couple years, no question. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. It’s been a privilege to own this franchise. My focus is to make sure I hand it on in better shape than I found it.”
Whether he has seller’s remorse: “I’ve made a decision, and I’m going to stick with that decision. It got to a point where it became very, very clear to me that it was the right decision. I’m at peace with the decision. It wasn’t my first choice. It is something that I’m comfortable with. I’m now very, very focused on making sure I pass the baton here in a way that is as professional as possible and make sure that I hand off the franchise in better shape than I found it.”
What he would be looking for in a new owner, since it’s his choice: “It’s somebody who is a huge baseball fan, who loves this community and is willing to commit to this community and put everything they have into it, and bring a world championship to L.A.”