Ms. Roberts in Tuesday’s New York Times :

In no attempt to offend Anaheim by depicting it as Mayberry R.F.D., Artie Moreno simply wants a broader brand identity and revenue stream for his team in the nation’s second-largest media market, all in an attempt to keep it among the top five in payroll but the bottom 10 in ticket prices. Perhaps feeling a bit threatened by Moreno’s ambitions, Frank McCourt would love to stop Moreno from claiming an ever-expanding slice of an undecided fan base that is growing east of Dodger Stadium in what is called the Inland Empire.

“I think what is happening is both teams understand the rapid growth in Southern California,” Carter said. “The travesty is, both franchises had a great opportunity to build up their fan base in the off-season but became bogged down with public relations and community relations.

The defining difference between them? Moreno possesses one essential item McCourt does not own: a reservoir of goodwill. True, the teams won their divisions last year and each purged popular players in the off-season, but the cost-conscious Dodgers have emerged as the team with a fuzzy plan for the future.

(which of these guys is Brad Penny?)

Replies Ben Schwartz,

Fuzzy? No, Frank McCourt is just inept at marketing his team. The new billboards look like an Aquafina ad and I’ve driven by several unable to figure out whose on them until the New York Times was good enough to explain that is actually a three-man morph of Koufax to Valenzuala to Odalis Perez, that is, a history of declining LA pitching. Let’s see, last year McCourt’s team managed to win a division against the odds, slap down the Giants in a bitter heartbreaker at Chavez, and give us Jose Lima’s beautiful last game — and all anybody talked about was the Paul Loduca trade.