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Blog Entry

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

Posted on: January 12, 2012 9:47 am
Edited on: January 24, 2012 10:50 am
 

The news that Bud Selig's extension had been approved by baseball's owners and will be announced Thursday was met with the predictable fan groans via twitter and email. No surprise there. The big guy always takes the hits.
  
But here is why it's a good thing Selig is staying in the job he took on an "interim'' basis (chuckle, chuckle) nearly two decades ago, from 1 to 10.

1. Nobody can pull together disparate and often cranky multimillionaire and billionaire owners like Selig. Sure, a few of these guys are normal, grounded people (i.e. Stu Sternberg, Mark Attanasio). But a large number of them are either egomanical, entitled, or both (or frankly, just plain nutty). To get them to come together and form a consensus as often as he does is just plain amazing. As one management person said, "He gets things done.''

2. A lot of what he gets done is worthwhile. Interleague play, the wild card and the originally expanded playoffs are a hit (which is why he's pushing to expand the original expansion now). The races have been just as exciting, and more teams have at least gotten themsleves into playoff contention. The final day of the 2011 regular season is possibly the most exciting non-playoff day in team sports history.

3. The other two reasons more teams have gotten into the September and October acts are the revenue sharing and luxury tax elements he pushed through. The Yankees payroll is still the highest in baseball but it's remained steady the past few years, and now the Yankees are aiming to move it down below $189 million by 2014, which would have been unthinkable until the new CBA. The NFL talks about its parity, but that league rigs the schedules to aid that goal (and still doesn't completely succeed, as New England and Pittsburgh are great every year). Baseball's only multiple World Series winners over the past 11 years are the Red Sox and Cardinals, with two titles apiece. Small-market teams like Tampa Bay have become powers. Minnesota was good before it started spending big. And a movie was made about Oakland's great success before it turned down, too. Arizona, Florida, Colorado, Cincinnati and Milwaukee have had their moments, as well. Nineteen clubs have made the postseason the last five years.

3. Of course the 1994 work stoppage and cancelation of the World Series was a bad thing. But with the new CBA, there will be 21 straight years of labor peace through 2016, an amazing achievement, especially when you consider what's going on in the other major sports.   

4. Sure, Selig was slow to react to the steroid problem in baseball (as we all were). But now MLB has the best and toughest steroid program, one that is blind to a player's name and ability (see 2011 NL MVP Ryan Braun). Fifty games for a first offense is a tough penalty that provides real deterrent. MLB is also the first U.S. sport to institute blood testing for hGH. And unlike the NFL, baseball provides due process in the form of an arbitration process that gives players who fail tests a chance to clear their names and slates.

5. Baseball players have guaranteed contracts, an extraordinary pension plan and no concussion scandal.

6. Selig has generally made the right calls weeding out bad ownership candidates in his meticulous process of vetting new ownera. The one obvious mistake of allowing Frank McCourt to buy the storied Dodgers franchise has been erased by Selig's ability to be rid the sport of the carpetbagging creep (he is a goner April 30).  
  
7. Baseball has built 20 new stadiums on his watch, and about 17 or 18 of them are beautiful shining lights, including PNC Park, Safeco, AT&T, Citi Field, Camden Yards and Comerica. The Marlins' new park looks amazing, even if it's yet to be seen whether South Florida can support a major-league team. Only Oakland and Tampa Bay have had continuing trouble getting new digs, and there appears to be some new hope for the A's.

8. The WBC is the most extensive international baseball event here, and 2013 will feature its third installment.

9. Even though Selig can barely log on, MLB.com is the model internet site for all leagues. 

10. Baseball attendance and revenues keep rising in an awful economy, to the point where the attendance has been the hghest the past eight years and receipts have surpassed $7 billion a year two years running (double what they were a decade ago). Nine teams drew at least three million fans in 2011, led for the first time by the Philadelphia Phillies, and only one failed to draw 1.5 million (the A's). It truly is the golden age of baseball, even if Bud frequently has to remind us.    


       






              








Category: MLB
Tags: Bud Selig
 
Comments

Since: Aug 19, 2006
Posted on: January 17, 2012 1:23 pm
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

 I still think he gets a huge fail for two reasons:

1) He has no intention of ever pushing for a salary cap. Screw the luxury tax, it's really just a fee for spending too much on your roster. Teams that are in huge markets and have the ability to recoup that money are more than willing to do so. Small market teams can't compete with that, the kick back is not nearly enough to make up for the revenue generating disparity. The big spenders might not be guaranteed a WS title, because anything can happen in the play-offs, but they get a huge leg up.

2) The steroid scandal happened on his watch. Don't tell me he didn't know about it either. That would make him either really dumb, or really nieve and he's neither.

 The football comparison is a feeble one. In any system you are going to have good management and bad management. Teams in the NFL that are dominant because of great scouting, coaching and the odd free agent pickup. Bad teams are still going to be bad teams. In baseball the only way to qualify for the post season if you arent a big market team is to either be in a crappy division, or spend money you have no chance to recover in revenue and run at a huge loss. The system is clearly broken, most fans of big market teams can even agree on that one. The author of this article is clearly delusional. 



Since: Sep 18, 2006
Posted on: January 17, 2012 11:11 am
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

Great points indeed. I hate Selig nearly as much as I hate Bettman.

And not to mention MLB's idiotic blackout policy that forces people to beat the system - like having a slingbox ( or other similar device ) in Boston to watch games in Texas to skirt the silly blackout rules. The blackout rules are subject to universal scorn...and for those who have "Extra Innings" packages, they get screwed by the policy.





Since: Jun 26, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 10:25 am
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

The way I see it, slowly but surely Bud is being seen more positively by the fans.  As well he should, has had to make some tough decisions that may have not been popular at the time with many.  I do think most of what he has done has worked pretty well.  



Since: Nov 1, 2008
Posted on: January 14, 2012 4:22 pm
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

I liked the article itself but hate the fact that it's just another place for the ignorant sheep to log on and spout off about how big bad Bud is responsible for all the evil that has ever existed in the world.


otter3030
Since: Nov 27, 2007
Posted on: January 14, 2012 3:04 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator




Since: Jan 3, 2007
Posted on: January 13, 2012 3:21 pm
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

2. A lot of what he gets done is worthwhile. Interleague play, the wild card and the originally expanded playoffs are a hit (which is why he's pushing to expand the original expansion now). The races have been just as exciting, and more teams have at least gotten themsleves into playoff contention. The final day of the 2011 regular season is possibly the most exciting non-playoff day in team sports history.


Right....and that final day wouldn't have been so exciting if the playoffs weren't expanded the way he's wanting to do because both teams in the respective games would have been in anyway.



Since: Jul 24, 2009
Posted on: January 13, 2012 3:20 pm
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

Overall this decision doesnt matter because a new commissioner wont be able to break through the walls of the players union anyway. 
Excellent point.  A lot of posters here think that once Bug Selig leaves baseball, a salary cap will magically appear out of nowhere.  It doesn't work like that.  The MLB Players Association is DEADSET against a cap, so it will more than likely never happen in baseball no matter who the Commissioner is.  It's certainly not fair for fans of small market teams, but it is what it is.



Since: Jan 15, 2008
Posted on: January 13, 2012 3:18 pm
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

As far as I am concerned you cannot view Selig as having done any good for baseball overall. First off he is the first to hold the position who only represented the owners and having been or still being an owner means he only had the owners best interests to look after and did not always act in the best interest of the game.
The all star game winner deciding home field advantage could have been handled a different way. I have always thought to help spike attendance the team who draws the most fans should receive home field. Think about this idea. You will be rewarding the fans who have been loyal and supportive of their team throughout the season and will make the fans feel more involved in deciding something. Teams that are involved in the playoff race will see a spike in attendance after the all star game in hopes of helping their team gain homefield advantage.



Since: Apr 12, 2009
Posted on: January 13, 2012 2:32 pm
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

There's only one reason why Bud Selig is horrible, just like this writer. No professional sport, in any country, in any league, assocation, club, etc., ahs ever made their EXHIBITION all-star game the deciding factor as to who gets home field advantage through out the entire post season. There isn't one. Look it up! This bozo was the only one to not only conceive this idea, but actually implementing it. I mean, seriously, it's stupid. Your team goes out, ends up with the most wins of the year, and by all means, should deserve home field advantage throughout the entire post season, but don't get home field advantage in the World Series because you might be in the National League, and since they American League won (IN AN EXHIBITON ALL STAR GAME), you don't get home field advantage. Sure, a few of your players get select to participate in an exhibition all star game, but it doesn't matter. The NL lost, therefore, no home field for you in the series. This, to me, will always define Bud Selig and what he done for Major League Baseball. This is the only thing you will remember in 20 years from now. It won't be because he did this or that for MLB Jon Heyman. It's this move (that is argubably one of the dumbest moves ever made by a commissioner) is why Bud Selig will be remember.




Since: Apr 21, 2007
Posted on: January 13, 2012 1:24 pm
 

Why Selig's extension is great thing for baseball

Folks - this is lengthy, but please read this one and tell me if I'm just being too lame but...

I believe that Selig is a smart and probably decent man, but here's my rub: "Sure, Selig was slow to react to the steroid problem in baseball (as we all were). But now MLB has the best and toughest steroid program..."

I cannot just gloss over the first part of that sentence - it is *major*.  Selig was *10-15 years* too slow on this!  And "as we all were"?  What exactly was the average fan supposed to do?  Or who else?  Maybe the beat writers were supposed to ante up the pressure to expose this with more pressing investigative reporting?  Did we really need to see Jose Bleeping Canseco become the sport's moral conscience?

I'm sorry - to me the "steroid era" is an enormous blight on the game - one that we *still* don't really know how to deal with when it comes to discussing, evaluating and honoring the players who played during this mirage period.  What has always separated baseball from all other sports is how the "hot stove league" and the "bar-room debates" have made baseball the only sport that has the kind of year-round presence it does. 

Debates centering around "How would Babe Ruth have done against Koufax?" or "What if DiMaggio and Williams HAD been traded for each other?" are and always have been fun.  How much "fun" is it to debate who the "clean" home-run king is?

As a life-long fan of the game, with some deeply emotional ties that draw on the sport, I cannot get past the fact that this blight came on Bud's watch - or his purposeful NON-watch.  He turned his back on all the juicing because his *fellow owners* (Bud did come out of the ranks, after all) liked the fan interest and *dollars* generated by the cheating long-ballers.

To me all the other "accomplishments" do not offset this one *huge* stain - kind of like "Well, besides your husband being assassinated, how'd you like the play Mrs. Lincoln?"

I am not "screaming for his head", but neither do I rejoice in his continued presence.  I'll be glad when he steps down - one less painful reminder of the Steroids Era; and believe it or not, I am quite sure there are *others* who can be selected to succeed him and do the same "splendid" job he has.


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