Bud Selig: On a mission to destroy baseball?

by on March 11, 2010   10 Comments

Of all the things Bud Selig has done in his time as the commissioner of Major League Baseball, his new idea certainly takes the cake (assuming that cake is baked with large portions of ludicrous and crazy pills, that is.)

Selig has made some questionable decisions (or lack thereof) in his time, from not reconsidering the reinstatement of Pete Rose to making the exhibition All Star game determine home-field advantage in the World Series to his questionable decision about Game 5 of the 2008 World Series, the idea pitched from Selig’s “special committee for on-field matters” surpasses all of those.

This special committee has come up with an idea that would allow “floating” realignment in which teams would be allowed to switch divisions from season-to-season, based on their plans to contend that season and their payroll.

In this scenario, the Milwaukee Brewers could move to the National League West or the Tampa Bay Rays could switch from the American League East to the American League Central in order to have a better chance at winning in a less-competitive division.  In an example given by Sports Illustrated’s Tom Verducci, the Cleveland Indians, who are in the process of rebuilding, could move from the AL Central to the AL East in order to gain more home games against the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox, teams which would draw large crowds, earning more money for the Indians.

The idea pitched by this committee would ruin baseball as we know it.  It would ruin rivalries that teams form when playing each other 18 times a year.  It could destroy historical match-ups, teams that have battled each other for their division’s title for decades, as one team could just decide to switch to a weaker division to give themselves a better chance at winning.  It would be terrible for baseball.  It would be terrible for the fans.

Author: Matt Pennington
Categories: Major League Baseball (MLB)
Tags: ,

10 Comments »

  1. I love the two tags for this article – Bud Selig and Ridiculousness – haha!

    I hadn’t see this Sports Illustrated article and I can barely believe it is true this type of idea can gain enough steam make it to the headlines. If anyone read my writing on FTP or other sites, you know I’m all for evening the playing field in MLB, but not by ignoring the inherent problems in the system by adjusting divisions to fit how screwed up the salary situation has gotten. It really is laughable.

    Comment by Jason Wuerfel
    March 11, 2010 at 7:44 am

  2. I believe the next step would be not even keeping score, so that like in t-ball everyone is a winner. This move would turn MLB into a joke! Great article!

    Comment by Eric Somsel
    March 11, 2010 at 9:39 am

  3. I thought the two tags fit pretty well together.

    And yeah, like you, I’m all for making baseball more competitive and evening the playing field, but this plan is just absolutely ridiculous.

    Yeah Eric, no need to keep score any more, let’s just give everyone a participation trophy and tell them good work! Maybe that’s Selig’s backup plan…

    Comment by Matt Pennington
    March 11, 2010 at 1:19 pm

  4. Wow.

    Longshot of it happening, but if it does…..I’ll start following the Puerto Rican league.

    Comment by Mac
    March 11, 2010 at 1:36 pm

  5. I don’t think they would be dumb enough to actually put something like this in place, but then again, remember who we’re talking about…

    Comment by Matt Pennington
    March 12, 2010 at 2:25 pm

  6. To level the playing field they need to put in a salary cap like the NFL and NBA. That’s why some people say those sports are better sports than baseball. With a salary cap baseball is the number one game by far.

    Comment by Brian LaRue
    March 12, 2010 at 7:31 pm

  7. No question – the only issue now is that the salary gap from top to bottom is so huge that the shock to the system of a salary cap would screw a lot of guys out of job. They would need to do some type of grandfathering with current contracts, otherwise it would completely stop some of the big guys from making any kind of player moves for a few years and I imagine they wouldn’t be too happy with that.

    Comment by Jason Wuerfel
    March 13, 2010 at 8:23 am

  8. On top of that, any kind of salary cap couldn’t be put in place overnight, it would take years for it to actually work properly. You couldn’t just say that starting in 2011, there is a max cap of $140 million and a minimum cap of $100 million or whatever. It would take years for teams to actually be able to get inside that area.

    A salary cap would also, in my opinion, help control some of the individual player contracts. Instead of an unlimited amount of money available in the open market, there would only be X amount of money available, if that makes any sense to anybody else…

    Comment by Matt Pennington
    March 14, 2010 at 11:44 pm

  9. I agree – tell teams they all get $8 million to spend in the MLB draft, $4 million to spend internationally, and only $20 million per off-season to sign MLB free agents – or something along those lines. If you start that kind of program, you almost don’t need a salary cap, because your spending is already limited. It is also easier to plug into the current system without screwing up where everyone already is on their team salary. I think that is a really good idea if I understand it correctly.

    Comment by Jason Wuerfel
    March 15, 2010 at 12:02 pm

  10. That’s a good way to start, with caps on international free agents, draft picks, and unrestricted free agents. Of course, it will take more than that but it’s heading in the right direction. And I think that enforcing some kind of minimum salary cap is just as important as a maximum cap. Obviously not all teams are capable of spending like the Yankees, Sox, etc., but there is no excuse for putting a $25 million team on the field either. Yeah, the economy is bad and maybe that cuts down on fans spending money so some teams are struggling, but look at all the teams who are consistently good teams like New York, Boston, Philly, etc. They aren’t having any trouble selling tickets because they put good teams on the field and are willing to spend money to win (and, in return, make money.)

    Comment by Matt Pennington
    March 15, 2010 at 10:08 pm

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