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…. Bitch and moan

Not to belittle the accomplishments of our venerated commissioner of baseball, but the news from Milwaukee –the Brewers are planning to erect a statue of Selig– is really disturbing.

First off, is there anyone who doubts that this idea could only have come from the team’s “owner,” who just happens to be his daughter. I mean, who else is gonna come up with a horrible idea like this? It certainly isn’t the fans, who have watched as the Selig family has gotten rich beyond their wildest dreams –mostly due to the tens of millions of dollars the team receives through revenue sharing, money that Selig has refused to spend on the team for as long as revenue sharing has been going on– and the increase in revenue due to a taxpayer-funded new ballpark.

Now there’s an accomplishment worthy of a statue, mooch millions upon millions of dollars off of the other teams in baseball, and off your fans and your local community, and then refuse invest in the team for decades.

But, besides some of these obvious issues, you put up statues for the great players in your franchise’s history, as opposed to filthy rich guys who charge ten dollars for a Miller Lite; the idea is off-putting for a variety of lesser concerns.

Selig’s legacy is stained by his complicity in the steroids issue. He cannot distance himself from what happened on his watch, whether you think it was a true scandal, or simply an overblown media creation. He was there, as commissioner, when Sosa and McGwire “saved” baseball, and there were people in his office that were whispering in his ear that there was a problem. He knew, and he did nothing, well, if by nothing, you mean, ignore the issue.

He’s handled several other issues rather poorly as well, don’t you think?

He tried to contract teams out of existence. That didn’t go so well, you might remember.

You could say I’m being unkind. OK, forget, for a moment, all of the things he did poorly. What has he done well?

Really, what has he accomplished that you could say is remarkable? What would you say is Bud Selig’s legacy?

Owners and players making lots of money?
Revenue sharing?
Inter-League play?
The Pete Rose fiasco? Yeah, he handled that one well.

How about shunning Bonds and McGwire for alleged PED use while standing behind David Ortiz? Yeah, very well though-out.

You do remember that he was the commissioner when the players went on strike, just about killing the game.

Oh, and he was commissioner when the owners colluded against the players, resulting in a hundreds of millions of dollars lawsuit that the league lost.

These are just a few of the reasons the idea is terrible. The most obvious one I haven’t even mentioned:

He’s still alive. His “legacy” could hardly be a known commodity, even now, towards the end of his career. You wanna honor the guy when he retires, throw a parade. Have a big dinner, and give him a car. A bronze statue? When he finally brings the team a championship you might want to consider a statue, maybe. It’s quite a bit early in the story of his life to build him a bronze statue.

Only in a sports town so bereft of real baseball heroes and champions could the idea of a statue of Seligula be given consideration.


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All commentary is the opinion of John J Perricone unless otherwise noted.
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