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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

On balance, Bud Selig has been good for baseball

I bring all this up because word came out this week that Selig, who has said he would retire at the end of this year, will be offered a contract extension at the owners meetings this week. And by all accounts, he’ll take it, adding at least two more years to his tenure as commissioner. He’s been on the job since 1992, and two more seasons would take Selig to his 80th birthday.

I bring a break from the roids/hof talk and bring you all the good news that Bud is probably staying on for two more years. I must have missed an earlier link to that rumor.

cardsfanboy Posted: January 11, 2012 at 06:27 PM | 34 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: brewers, business, history, mariners

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   1. I Remember When Posted: January 12, 2012 at 12:26 AM (#4034855)
Bud Selig has been a success only if you count success in the paychecks of players and owners. He has been a disaster for the fans and the integrity of the game. Which farce was worse? a) Inter-league play b) designated hitter c) all-star game results count d) wild card e) 2 wild cards f) consolidation of competing leagues into the monolithic MLB g) swapping teams between the AL and NL h) unbalanced schedule i) November baseball j) decline in importance of the world series k) PED leadership l) No Mas AS Game tie m) self-appointment to Commissioners Position n) '94 strike and cancelling of the world series o) 162 game play-in for the playoffs p) covering up the Mitchell report results q) ... Ding! Times up - Well that's all I could come up in 15 minutes - add your own outrages.
   2. aberg Posted: January 12, 2012 at 12:32 AM (#4034857)
You blame him for the DH?
   3. cardsfanboy Posted: January 12, 2012 at 02:37 AM (#4034894)
I think Bud has been arguably the greatest commissioner in sports history. Mind you, I'm not some traditionalistic prude.

I love interleague play and heck my complaint over the past several years has been that baseball should either expand or move a team from the nl to the al to eliminate this massively stupid unbalanced divisions. Add in the awesomeness of interleague play, and of course the greatness of the wbc and the elimination of the silly "homefield advantage for the world series is determined by the year" and of course the improvements to an exhibition game like the all-star game. Sure he failed miserably in the players pick(the players pick should be top pick, if he is voted in by the fans, then too bad and that opens up a spot... do not go one deep like they have been) but outside of that, he did the right thing by ending it in a tie, and he then worked on trying to come up with ways that that wouldn't happen. And of course revenue sharing, arguably the single biggest thing in pro-sports.. Yes MLB. com is a massively profitable enterprise. but man whatever they use for design, is arguably the worlds website representing a multibillion dollar industry.
   4. Greg K Posted: January 12, 2012 at 06:56 AM (#4034911)
I'm no defender of Selig, but I never saw what the problem was with I, and L...it's an all-star game! Who cares. All my enduring memories of all-star games have nothing to do with competition...Larry Walker batting RH, Brad Penny just pumping in 25 fastballs in a row for the hell of it.
   5. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: January 12, 2012 at 08:00 AM (#4034922)
I won't go as far as cfb but Selig has been good. Most of what gets referenced in #1 is personal preference and while I agree with a lot of it his job isn't to make us happy, it's to make the most people possible happy and he seems to have done that.

I don't agree with "J" at all. The World Series is if anything more important now, you can argue that winning a division or a pennant is devalued but the World Series is "the only thing" in a lot of ways.
   6. Greg K Posted: January 12, 2012 at 08:25 AM (#4034936)
I don't like to read minds, but perhaps for J it should be "the decline in QUALITY of the World Series". The complaint being that the wild card allows for poorer teams to make it to the World Series more often. In which case D, E, and J can all be rolled into one complaint.
   7. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: January 12, 2012 at 09:16 AM (#4034973)
Bud Selig has been a success only if you count success in the paychecks of players and owners.

True, but I'm not convinced a "replacement level" commish would've done any worse. Selig benefited greatly from the explosion in cable television coinciding with his reign.
   8. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 12, 2012 at 09:32 AM (#4034985)
On balance, Bud Selig has been good for baseball


On the balance, cancer has been good for Mario Lemieux. After all, he never owned a hockey team until after he was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma, did he? He never could've done it without their help.
   9. Random Transaction Generator Posted: January 12, 2012 at 09:33 AM (#4034988)
I have no idea what "o) 162 game play-in for the playoffs" means.
Is that a reference that the regular season doesn't mean as much? Hasn't the World Series/playoffs always meant more since they were introduced over 100 years ago?
   10. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 12, 2012 at 09:55 AM (#4035003)
Selig's got plenty to answer for, steroid enabling in particular, but AFAIC most of his "successes" and "failures" are more a product of inevitability than any particular strokes of genius or stupidity on his part.

The DH came along long before his tenure, and has been entrenched in the AL ever since. I doubt if Selig had much to do with the bonanza that cable TV and the internet have brought to baseball and other forms of mass spectator sports. With 30 teams in competition, it would have taken a Giamatti or a Costas to resist the pull towards postseason expansion, and even 10 teams out of 30 compares favorably to the NFL/NBA/NHL. And much as the traditionalists want to claim otherwise, the merit of interleague play is strictly a matter of purely subjective opinion.

So where does that leave Selig? In terms of the financial bottom line, right up there at the top. By other measurements, it totally depends on what you're measuring, and if some of you want to put him down there with the Devil, I won't argue. Personally, I still think that Landis remains the most important and "irreplaceable" Commissioner the game has ever seen, but other than him, I can't see anyone whose tenure has seen more advances than Bud's.
   11. BDC Posted: January 12, 2012 at 09:58 AM (#4035004)
n) '94 strike and cancelling of the world series

That would be the nightmare of the Selig years; every other complaint (though justified) is just about idiotic crap that seems to go with the territory of all professional sports, and doesn't much affect the fun of a night at the ballpark. But if we hold the '94-'95 labor problems against Selig, we have to give him a great deal of credit for learning from those mistakes and ensuring that the game hasn't been shut down since. That's a big deal, IMO. After 1995 there was potential for a destructive lockout in pursuit of a salary cap, and to Selig's credit, the owners haven't come near it.
   12. JJ1986 Posted: January 12, 2012 at 10:02 AM (#4035007)
That would be the nightmare of the Selig years; every other complaint (though justified) is just about idiotic crap that seems to go with the territory of all professional sports, and doesn't much affect the fun of a night at the ballpark.


What about having the league buy the Expos so that his friends could move on to the Marlins and Red Sox?
   13. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 12, 2012 at 10:08 AM (#4035014)
What about having the league buy the Expos so that his friends could move on to the Marlins and Red Sox?

That's the creative destruction of capitalism. Are you some sort of European socialist?
   14. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 12, 2012 at 10:17 AM (#4035018)
But if we hold the '94-'95 labor problems against Selig, we have to give him a great deal of credit for learning from those mistakes and ensuring that the game hasn't been shut down since.


If we hold it against OJ that he killed Ronald and Nicole, we have to give him a great deal of credit for learning from those mistakes and not stabbing any more waiters or spouses.
   15. billyjack Posted: January 12, 2012 at 10:24 AM (#4035023)
In addition to the stupid sh!t he's actually done and/or turned a blind eye to...
if Selig had his way, among other things, the Twins and Nationals wouldn't exist and baseball would have a salary cap. Baseball is successful despite this guy.

[edit: Cokes all around]
   16. Addison Russell T. Davies (chris h.) Posted: January 12, 2012 at 11:22 AM (#4035076)
Well I think like most everything in life, neither extreme is correct.

First of all, I wish "I Remember When" would come back and explain some of his/her bizarre complaints, specifically b, j and o. But addressing them in order:

A: Personal preference. I like interleague play.
B: Um...what? I'm relatively certain Bud had nothing to do with the DH, unless his used-car dealership managed to acquire a DeLorean...
C: I'm not a fan of this, but it's a fairly minor thing to me.
D: I don't have any objection to the wild card.
E: I'll give you this one; I don't like the new 2WC format at all.
F: I don't have a problem with this, and I'm not sure why one would. Consolidating operations, umpiring, etc. just makes sense to me.
G: Yeah, I'm not a fan of this, either. Hasn't been a huge issue for me, but I could see how fans of teams that get moved would be pissed off. On the other hand, I like going to see the Cubs in Milwaukee (it's actually closer to me than Wrigley), so there's that. :-)
H: Unbalanced schedule doesn't bother me. Playing more games against division rivals makes a certain sort of sense to me. But I can understand why some would object.
I: I'd prefer not to have November baseball, but again it's not something I get real agitated about. Winter-climate baseball is not a new phenomenon to those of us living in Chicago.
J: This makes no sense whatsoever.
K: Fair enough, but do you also blame previous commissioners for amphetamine leadership?
L: It's an exhibition game. What would you suggest? The last thing I want is to see pitchers from my team tire themselves out because they have to keep going in an extended extra-innings EXHIBITION game. To me, this was a non-issue.
M: Pretty sure the owners had something to do with it.
N: Fair enough.
O: I cannot begin to guess what you're talking about here.
P: WHAT? If anything, I'm pissed that the report got RELEASED. That's a greater crime than anything complained about here.

I'm not agreeing with CFB that he's the greatest commissioner in the history of sports or anything like that, but I don't think he's been terrible, either.
   17. winnipegwhip Posted: January 12, 2012 at 12:01 PM (#4035119)
On balance, Bud Selig has been good for baseball


On balance, the holocaust was good at helping Jews get a nation in Palestine.
   18. Downtown Bookie Posted: January 12, 2012 at 01:40 PM (#4035257)
Does #17 count as an example of Goodwin's Law?

8-)

DB
   19. The District Attorney Posted: January 12, 2012 at 01:45 PM (#4035267)
No, "Goodwin's Law" is that the Brooklyn Dodgers are the only significant team in major league history. (Fred Wilpon's life, for instance, is governed by Goodwin's Law.)
   20. Palm Beach Pollworker Posted: January 12, 2012 at 02:38 PM (#4035353)
But if we hold the '94-'95 labor problems against Selig, we have to give him a great deal of credit for learning from those mistakes and ensuring that the game hasn't been shut down since.

No, we don't have to. If he had any decency or sense of responsibility, he would have resigned over the failure of his policy. He shamelessly clung to power then, and continues to do so.
   21. Addison Russell T. Davies (chris h.) Posted: January 12, 2012 at 02:57 PM (#4035385)
No, we don't have to. If he had any decency or sense of responsibility, he would have resigned over the failure of his policy.

That's a load of crap.

If you #### up at work, do you just quit out of decency or a sense of responsibility? I bet you don't.

If I screw up at work, my sense of responsibility actually demands that I stay, take what's coming to me, and try to fix everything.
   22. Greg K Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:02 PM (#4035396)
First of all, I wish "I Remember When" would come back and explain some of his/her bizarre complaints, specifically b, j and o. But addressing them in order:

Agreed. I've never complained about a BJ. Particularly if it's followed by an O.

I'm here all week.
   23. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:02 PM (#4035397)
No, "Goodwin's Law" is that the Brooklyn Dodgers are the only significant team in major league history.

That's not fair. Doris had the uniqueness of vision to buck the odds and become a Red Sox fan midway through the team's unremarkable 1967 season.
   24. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:09 PM (#4035407)

What about having the league buy the Expos so that his friends could move on to the Marlins and Red Sox?


What about taking a secret under-the-table loan from an owner while he was commissioner? And then lavishing that owner with hundreds of millions of dollars in free "revenue stealing" cash?
   25. Ned Garvin: Male Prostitute Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:27 PM (#4035445)
I think Goodwin's Law is that no matter how fast you can run, if you can't hit, you won't be very good.
   26. Greg K Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:27 PM (#4035446)
What about taking a secret under-the-table loan from an owner while he was commissioner? And then lavishing that owner with hundreds of millions of dollars in free "revenue stealing" cash?

In this context aren't quotes supposed to be used to ironically mock the official line on what something is called? As you're the one in the know who sees it for what it really is aren't you just quoting yourself there? Seems redundant.
   27. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:32 PM (#4035454)
That's a load of crap.

If you #### up at work, do you just quit out of decency or a sense of responsibility? I bet you don't.

If I screw up at work, my sense of responsibility actually demands that I stay, take what's coming to me, and try to fix everything.


That would make a much better defense of Bud if he'd taken what was coming to him, or tried to fix everything.
   28. Palm Beach Pollworker Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:38 PM (#4035463)
If you #### up at work, do you just quit out of decency or a sense of responsibility?

My humble day-to-day routine does not have millions or billions of dollars at stake if I should make a catastrophic error. The higher the stakes, the more a leader should have the decency to quit if they get things very wrong.

It's called 'ministerial responsibility', in politics.
   29. Greg K Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:43 PM (#4035470)

It's called 'ministerial responsibility', in politics.

And in the good old days they'd save you the humiliation of admitting a mistake and just cut off your head!
   30. Addison Russell T. Davies (chris h.) Posted: January 12, 2012 at 03:56 PM (#4035489)
Which is all well and good, I guess, except in real life it doesn't happen very often. Normally it only happens when people are caught screwing up, and it becomes impossible for them to do their jobs thanks to public opinion/shareholder revolt/whatever.

I'm not saying Selig didn't do some pretty awful things, but expecting him to quit over the strike is awfully unrealistic.
   31. cardsfanboy Posted: January 12, 2012 at 04:54 PM (#4035550)
I don't really believe Bud is the best commissioner of all time(although it's hard for me to think of a better one?) He has two complete and utter failures under his watch, which was the strike/lockout and the entire Expos fiasco. As to if Bud had his way, the Twins and Expos would have contracted, I honestly do not believe at any point in time that contraction was seriously on the table.
   32. Palm Beach Pollworker Posted: January 12, 2012 at 05:58 PM (#4035620)
Happy Chandler didn't do a bad job in only five years.
   33. Cblau Posted: January 12, 2012 at 09:42 PM (#4035789)
Selig didn't become commissioner until 1998.
   34. Srul Itza At Home Posted: January 13, 2012 at 01:39 AM (#4035882)
BS. He may not have had the title, but he was acting commissioner as of 1992.

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