Major League Baseball Advanced Media has settled its lawsuit with John “Dinn” Mann, the former executive vice president of baseball content for the online product, court documents revealed, and Mann confirmed this week to Sportico.
Mann said the settlement was amicable, but he was prevented by a non-disclosure agreement with MLBAM from revealing the financial terms.
Mann filed the civil lawsuit in New York Superior Court more than two years ago, shortly after he was terminated by MLB, which has since combined the operations of its online content under the MLB umbrella. MLBAM was originally set up as a separate corporation.
In the complaint, Mann sought what he said was 2% in promised compensation from the $2.6 billion sale of 75% ($52 billion) of BAMTech, which MLBAM began to spin off in part to Disney in 2016.
The settlement was reached earlier this year and filed with the court on May 8. The two-paragraph document didn’t reveal any details, stating simply that the action had been “hereby discontinued with prejudice and without any [court] costs to the parties.” Prejudice in this legal sense means the action can’t be brought again.
“We had a great run; we had a great run at MLB Advanced Media,” Mann said when reached by phone. “I’m excited about all the things I’m working on now.”
Mann joined the fledgling MLB.com in 2001 and oversaw the growth of the startup to a multi-billion company with significant influence on the sports and news-gathering industries. Under Mann’s guidance, MLBAM branched out into other products, taking NHL.com under its control as part of what was later called the BAMTech division.
In his original March 2018 complaint, Mann alleged that, “In 2006 BAM’s board granted him 2% equity interest in MLBAM’s ‘non-baseball business,’” later stating in the document that he had received no compensation upon the sale of BAMTech and was told he was not an equity holder.
In the lawsuit, Mann sought “declaratory, injunctive and equitable relief, as well as monetary damages.”
That, of course, is all moot with the settlement.
Mann recently became a partner and chief content officer of Turn2 Equity Partners, a group that includes Houston Astros manager Dusty Baker; MLB Network Radio host Jim Duquette; former San Francisco Giants general manager Bobby Evans; John Haegele, a former executive at Van Wagner and Yahoo; Jarett Sims, son of Seattle Mariners broadcaster Dave Sims, Peter Stein, once part of SporTech Ventures, and most recently Jason Heyward, an outfielder for the Chicago Cubs.
The new company plans to offer active ballplayers advanced marketing and business opportunities, among other products.
Mann has long-standing baseball ties. He’s the grandson of the Judge Roy Hofheinz, the founder of the the expansion Houston Colt .45s/Astros, who famously built the Astrodome at the cost of $35 million. MLB’s first domed stadium was dubbed “The Eighth Wonder of the World” when it opened in 1965.
Mann was intregal in the movement to preserve the Dome as an historical site in 2018. It was home to MLB and the National Football League for decades, hosting its last Astros game in 1999, and now is not in operation.