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Rob Neyer Newsbeat

Monday, March 23, 2015

Neyer: John Dowd’s Box of Illogic

Pete’s real crime? That haircut.

It was fairly common knowledge back then that Giamatti was open to a suspension for Rose if the Reds manager would admit to gambling on baseball and enter treatment for his gambling addiction.

Yet, according to Dowd, it went further than that. Dowd now says he and Giamatti worked with federal prosecutors and even the FBI to work out a deal that any pending charges for tax evasion against Rose would be dropped if he came clean.

In addition, FBI agents worked behind the scenes to ensure that Rose’s gambling debts with the New Jersey loan sharks and bookies that numbered in the hundreds of thousands would be forgiven, Dowd now says.

Got all that? If you believe Dowd, Rose’s real crime wasn’t the gambling; it’s that he wouldn’t accept a plea bargain.

Sorry, but you can’t have it both ways. You cannot, as an investigator or Commissioner or whomever, argue that a crime is so terrible that the ultimate punishment is absolutely necessary, then argue in the next breath that simply admitting the crime would justify a significantly lesser punishment.

 


Thursday, December 04, 2014

Neyer: The Hall of Fame and the meaning of forever

we should at least be allowed to discuss what removing a few people from the Hall of Fame would look like. All of which I bring up only because the very idea of such a thing seems so difficult for some to even consider.

Why so difficult? I don’t think it’s about fairness. Nearly everyone who’s actually studied the question believes that electing Chick Hafey to the Hall of Fame was a mistake; a mistake, I would argue, that’s actually unfair to the Hall of Famers who deserve to be there, on the merits.

No, I think it’s difficult to consider excising Hall of Famers because the idea touches a deep, dark reality that we prefer to ignore: Nothing lasts forever… But what if we acknowledge the inevitability of change, perhaps even embrace that inevitability? Suddenly all sort of possibilities appear… Once you’ve got a list, then you can ask some smart people to review the list with a great deal of care.

Oh, and by the way? Nobody’s on the list while they’re still living. So don’t worry, Goose Gossage, Rollie Fingers, and Bruce Sutter: Nobody even thinks about questioning your legacy until you’ve been gone for five years. Or 10. Or 20. Hell, I don’t really care. Make it 50 if you want, so even your children don’t have to worry about it.

Your children’s children, though? Apologies, but at some point the grandchildren have to find their own ways, without any help from those plaques in Cooperstown.

 

The District Attorney Posted: December 04, 2014 at 04:43 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, rob neyer

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Neyer: You can take the boy out of the country ...

“You know, I’ve been working out, eating better. Just wondering if you wanted to get a cup of coffee, Royals. Thinking maybe we should get back together.”

Which of course is the last little piece of this: The Kansas City Royals, for almost exactly as long as I’ve had any sort of opinion about how baseball teams should be run, have been run in almost exactly the opposite way. And the unhappy (for me) truth is that if the Royals win the World Series, it will be taken as absolute proof in some quarters that the Royals were exactly right about building a winning baseball franchise, and I was exactly wrong.

I can live with that. I miss being a fan. I miss the highs a lot, and I even miss the lows a little bit.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 07, 2014 at 12:10 PM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: fandom, rob neyer, royals

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Neyer: The Power of JABO

JABO might be able to do the hully-gully, but unfortunately they can’t imitate Vin Scully.

A few months ago we launched a new microsite, Just a Bit Outside (JABO). Now we’re gearing up for a grand experiment: Game 1 of the NLCS, powered by JABO, and broadcast on FOX Sports 1 on October 11 at 8pm Eastern/5pm Pacific.

Of course, FOX will provide the traditional broadcast, featuring Joe Buck, Harold Reynolds, and Tom Verducci in the booth, Ken Rosenthal and Erin Andrews on the field. Meanwhile, over on FS1 – and by the way, here’s an easy way to find FS1 on your cable or satellite packageNLCS on FOX Sports 1 Powered by JABO will focus on statistics, sabermetrics, and graphics, with plenty of debate and conversation while the action plays out on the field. We’ll utilize a double-box format, with the live game action in one box, and our studio hosts and guests in another, along with a constant flow of graphics.

FOX’s Kevin Burkhardt will host the show, and he’ll be joined at the big desk by JABO stalwarts Gabe Kapler and C.J. Nitkowski. I’ll also be tossing in the occasional observation and opinion, and interacting with viewers via social media. And finally, we’re working very hard to line up some very special guests.

The District Attorney Posted: October 02, 2014 at 02:04 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: c.j. nitkowski, gabe kapler, rob neyer, television

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

KC’s Baseball Writing Royalty

But Neyer didn’t just turn me on to baseball writing. He turned me onto the Kansas City Royals.

Now, I am not a Royals fan: I am a Cardinals fan, which is not quite the opposite of a Royals fan, but it’s close. But Neyer was a fan of the Royals, which was something else that was new. I hadn’t read many sportswriters who openly admitted they were cheering for a particular team; my college journalism professors had told me that was against the rules. (They were wrong, by the way.) But Neyer was passionate about his team—it was easier to be passionate back about the Royals then; it had only been a decade or so since they’d last made the playoffs—and because I was passionate about reading his work, I learned about them as well. And then I realized, that, jeez, there were a ton of baseball writers who were either Royals fans, or wrote for the Kansas City Star, which had one of the best sports sections in the country.

Neyer led me to James, of course (and he was a Royals fan too), but also Rany Jazayerli of Baseball Prospectus (which led me to Joe Sheehan and Nate Silver and Christina Kahrl and Clay Davenport, none of whom were Royals fans but all of whom were brilliant) and my former colleague here at Sports On Earth, Joe Posnanski. These were all wonderful writers, but they were also wonderful writers about the Royals.

And the best part was that these devoted Royals fans and/or observers is that they were all so smart in a way that the team was so dumb.

No love for Lee Judge?

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 01, 2014 at 11:45 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: bill james, joe posnanski, rany jazayerli, rob neyer, royals

 

 

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