'Round this time yesterday, Judge Michael Lynn all but postponed the Texas Rangers' hopes of getting a sale done by the July 31 trade deadline by ordering most of the parties involved in the bankruptcy case into mediation on July 16. The one major party not invited to the dance -- Chuck Greenberg and Nolan Ryan's Rangers Baseball Express -- wasn't so thrilled with Lynn's move: Late yesterday they filed a Motion to Reconsider, in which Fort Worth attorney Robert A. Simon argues that the longer this goes on, the more likely it becomes that no only will the first-place team miss out on trade-deadline opportunities, but the whole deal with Greenberg and Ryan inches closer to collapse.
You can read the entirety of the motion here, but, in short, Simon writes:
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Despite excellent on-field performance during the 2010 season to date, the Texas Rangers franchise is cash poor and operates with significant negative cash flow. The value of the franchise is burdened as losses accumulate daily. As the case progresses, the Debtor is incurring more and more debt. The debut will have to be paid before any money can flow up to the Debtor's equity. Every day this process drags on reduces the recovery to creditors.
Lynn agreed to a hearing this morning at 10:30, and word is he did indeed agree to move up mediation to July 6, followed by a July 9 confirmation hearing. Calls are out.
Update: According to the Star-Telegram's coverage of today's courtroom doings, Lynn is none too pleased about moving the date back to July 9, and if he doesn't like Hicks Sports Group's revised proposal, then the sale could be delayed till fall:
"We will not decide based on what the fans want ... what the media wants ... what Mr. Ryan or Mr. Greenberg wants, or what [Baseball Commissioner] Bud Selig wants," Lynn declared from the bench. If the revised plan falls short of satisfactorily addressing the interests of all affected parties, "I will deny confirmation, and we're back to square one, and it will be on the heads of those who support this motion."