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I agree with you 100%. Unfortunately, having an "opportunity" to fix the blackout policy versus having an "incentive" to do so are two different things. As long as the subscriber revenues for MLB.tv continue to roll in, MLB has no incentive to fix the blackout issue and likely will not do so, no matter how much public jawboning they get about it. They have had the "opportunity" to fix it all along; they have just chosen not to use it.
I'm pretty sure it would cost a good bit more than the minimum. The reason Lee isn't playing anymore is because nobody would offer him a contract on terms that he deemed acceptable (i.e. not enough money) and he was willing to walk away from the game rather than accept less. No reason why that should change now. He's already made enough in his career that he doesn't have to play for "minimum wage".
Actually, I think of the Dodgers more as old money that went broke and fell out of favor in the community due to the new money attitude of the McCourts, then came into a windfall thanks to exploding TV revenues. Deals like the Lee non-deal are more like a public-service statement for the new ownership to show the community they are "doing something" than some weird art painting. At least that's how I look at it.
I know it's an odd turn of a phrase to refer to a guy who's been doing play by play for 60+ years as a "breath of fresh air". But when you're subjected to so many of the clowns that pass themselves off as broadcasters these days, and then you have the pleasure of hearing Vinny call a Dodgers game, that's exactly what it seems like.
As for what Vinny says about Buster Posey, who cares if he repeats himself. It's the Giants, for Pete's sake. Most if not all of what Vinny says about them goes in one ear and right out the other. :)
So let me see if I have this straight - MASN already receives more in subscriber fees per month than most other regional sports networks, and yet they can't bring themselves to compromise with Time Warner here in North Carolina so that we can even get to see Orioles/Nationals games in the first place? Oh, that's just rich.
Not that I care one bit for Time Warner either (a plague on both your houses!) but this pissing contest has been going on for years, and with MLB's idiotic blackout policy thrown into the mix it's just extremely frustrating. And of course all parties are pointing the finger of blame at anyone but themselves.....
You could make an argument that a few of those combos were really more of a "big 2" than a "big 3". 1999 Red Sox, for example.
I'm guessing they have the interwebs in Russia now, so they can pony up the cash (if they have it) to watch baseball on their computer just like we do. However, certain areas may be subject to MLB blackout restrictions.
I'm afraid the only way to get MLB to change the blackout rules may be...... money. As long as fans continue to buy the Extra Innings package as is, then the MLB owners have no real motivation to change it. Fans have been complaining about the blackout rules for years now, and where have those complaints gone? Nowhere.
I'm one of the many who thought Harper was/is going to be a douchebag but he's done nothing but impress me so far. I got to see him play in person last week, and the dude just flat out hustles, all the time. I just hope he's still like that five years from now when he is more established, and we don't see that entitlement mentality kicking in.
So would I Maury, but that's a mighty big IF statement.
Being a Dodger fan I hate to say this, but I'll be surprised if Matt Kemp doesn't regress a bit this year, with a new contract in his back pocket. If it's only a little bit I'll be happy.
"JJ: Ned Colletti couldn't find his own ass with both hands and a GPS, let alone the new market inefficiency."
Well put, although the mental image is indeed a bit disturbing. The way Sands is being jerked around in favor of over-the-hills and never-weres like Rivera and Gwynn is a perfect example of Colletti's incompetence.
Let's not even start on McCourt. I have work I need to get done today.
Excellent piece, guys.
great.... it took me 4 months to erase "Written in the Stars" from my memory banks, and now you bring it back. Thanks for nothing.
That was my thinking too. Good luck to the Royals; I'd like to see them break through but like the saying goes, "if ands and buts were candy and nuts, we'd all have a Merry Christmas".
"My own "a-ha" moment came just before the end of the millennium. While I was watching the Padres on television, in a game where Brian Boehringer made a spot start, my wife walked into the room and asked, "Why is he in so early? Isn't he usually the set-up guy?" I knew right then that I would not come to regret our long-term contract."
Yep, that's a keeper....
You need look no further than Frank McCourt. The only difference is that Dodger fans can at least apparently see some light at the end of the tunnel. However, from all accounts it appears that even after collecting on the windfall that a franchise sale would bring him, McCourt still intends to keep his greedy fingers in the till by hanging on to parking lot revenue and/or some other of the numerous pieces that he has chopped the once-proud Dodger franchise into.
Not necessarily. Not all of those 60 games are going to be of the type that qualify for a save, even for the crappier teams. Some of them are going to be of the 6-1, 10-2 score variety.
Scott Boras stretches the truth?? I'm shocked, I tell you, just shocked....
Mismanagement of the franchises, in the early years for the Rays at least, has a lot to do with that.
Besides, most of the people in Florida are probably transplanted Yankee fans anyway.
"I can’t imagine how many tweets Kevin Goldstein and Keith Law have to see every day asking if Team X’s third- and fifth-best prospects would be enough to score Felix Hernandez."
Trade "proposals" by fans are a never-ending source of amusement.
Fix the idiotic blackout rules and bring MLB to North Carolina, the most populous state in the US without a baseball team.
Speaking as someone who has ordered more stuff from Amazon the past 10 years than I should ever admit to, I can confirm that they are usually conservative on their shipping estimates.
Seems to me that if just one of Lowrie or Weiland works out, as a SS or back-end SP respectively, then this deal was still worth making. If both of them end up helping the team, that's just gravy.
Kemp's numbers are even more remarkable given the lousy lineup surrounding him most of the year.
As I was watching Martinez round third and head (slowly) for home, my first thought was "wonder what's the tater trot time on this one?".
TBS had a shot of Posada right after the game ended - he had the look of a man who knew he had just played his last game in a Yankee uniform.
Well, I figured that the comments would be amusing, and full of "how could so-and-so vote for so-and-so, and not vote for (other so-and-so).
I was not wrong.
Well put. Ladies & gentlemen, welcome to Major League Baseball, 2011-style!!
Last night was awesome to watch. That 5 minute stretch that started with epic fail from Boston and ended with Longoria's HR was great theater. 6 months and 162 games, and it all comes down to something like that. Amazing.
Great column. Great night of baseball last night.
Wally Bell's strike zone was a joke.
Strong finish aside, McCourt hangs over this franchise like the sword of Damocles. His 15 minutes of infamy are on overtime. Until he can be rooted out and fully neutered, it's hard to see any significant degree of success for the Dodger franchise. And this from a diehard Dodger fan.
I think if you want to ban collisions at home plate, you should also ban the practice of blocking the runner's access to the plate. Either the ball beats the runner to the spot or it doesn't. Seems only fair to me, but I haven't heard this idea discussed much.
OOTP has a MLB Quickstart option that allows you to start the 2011 season with current MLB players. It's a great game but there is some learning curve time to get up to speed because of the sheer number of options and customization available. I'm still kinda new at it myself and still learning.
I thought Ned Colletti had done well to move Furcal and save some cash before he goes on the DL again, until he went and put himself in the middle of that last minute Boston-Seattle deal. Another dunce cap for ol' Ned.
There is a iPhone app now, called iOOTP. Not sure about an Android version.
Can't say for sure, but I think the poster was probably referring to the Dodgers getting the short end of the stick in this deal, not the Red Sox.
"Magically, all of their problems were solved on Tuesday with the acquisition of Juan Rivera, so look out, senior circuit."
Perfect example of the desperate, arrogant stupidity of the people currently in charge of the Dodgers. Note that I use the term "in charge" very loosely.
And the hits just keep on coming.... the Dodgers just traded for Juan Rivera, lol. The kind of player they need to be shedding, not taking on.
oops meant to put Peter first, but you get the idea.
McCourt is robbing Paul alright, but Paul's payment has been deferred until 2019.
As a kid in eastern North Carolina in the 70's, your only options for major league baseball were the Saturday game of the week on NBC, or pulling out the AM transistor radio and hoping to catch an inning or two at night coming out of Pittsburgh or Cincinnati or some such. Now I can watch games on my iPhone no matter where I am. Awesome.
Alas, I could also go on a screed about how one of the most populous states in the union and a great baseball following (NC) is being utterly ignored by the MLB powers that be, but I'll save that rant for another day.
The Dodgers also have a SS that will likely be on the market this summer in Rafael Furcal, provided he can stay healthy that long, and you have to believe that he would be a cheaper alternative than Reyes.
Jerry Sands with the 2nd quickest trot on Saturday. An obvious rookie mistake. :)
I don't care if Sands takes a full minute to round the bases, so long as he starts doing it more often. The Dodgers need him to be a bright spot in an otherwise dismal season.
I remember thinking on Opening Day, when the Indians were trailing the White Sox by two touchdowns in the third inning, that the Indians would have to be the next team to blow everything up and start over again while the White Sox could probably outscore the Bears. It appears I may have missed it by THAT much, Chief.
I'm rooting for the Indians until such time as my Dodgers get new ownership, but it's hard to see them playing a full season like they have the first month.
Sands has something that Robinson doesn't and the Dodgers badly need - power. Yes, he hasn't really shown it yet for LA, but as you said with Belt, most hitters struggle with their first exposure to big league pitching.
That said, I would not mind at all having both Sands and Robinson on the major league roster.
As a fellow Dodger fan, the last sentence sums it up rather well. The truth is indeed likely where it is with most things, somewhere in the middle. I talked to an Orioles fan friend of mine yesterday who said they would love to have Loney. Who knows, his season HR total might very well reach 20+ playing in that bandbox. It would be nice to get something of value for him though, for what appears to be a rebuilding period ahead for the Dodgers. Can we trade him for a new owner? I'd gladly throw in Uribe too.......
Could also be said that part of the reason they won a World Series is that they caught lightning in a bottle with guys like Cody Ross.
Agree on Jerry Sands, but here's hoping he gets his feet wet in LF first while waiting on Ned Colletti to throw in the towel on Loney.
Same here. That MASN-TWC pissfight has been going on for several years now, and appears no closer to resolution now than when it started.
Fine with me, so long as they move to Raleigh. You're not going to attract MLB-size crowds to downtown Durham, where the Bulls currently play.
Major league baseball in North Carolina. NC is the 9th largest state in the US by population. We have all the other major sports here, although I'm tempted not to count the Panthers and/or the Bobcats. Baseball is the only one that really matters to me though, and it's not here.
"Given the breadth of the McCourt's expenses, it won't be the silliest thing they wind up paying for."
Is it possible to cringe and laugh at the same time? Guess so, because as a Dodger fan I just did. The sad part is that your quote is actually a gross understatement.
MLB in Raleigh would be a dream come true for me. Even Charlotte would be better than nothing, which is what the Carolinas have now. NC is the ninth most populous state in the US, with 10 million people, yet the nearest teams to us are Atlanta to the south and the Nats/Orioles to the north.
NC is considered Nats/O's territory by MLB even though the vast majority of people here identify with the Braves or some other team. You can't even watch Nats/Orioles games here because of the ongoing pissfight between TWC and MASN, and the MLB.com blackout of "local territory" games, neither issue of which MLB seems to care to do anything about. It's ludicrous.
Good points, but I was thinking of DeJesus more in terms of the "grabbing the 2B job" despite Furcal, Uribe, Carroll, etc. already being on the team and penciled into the everyday lineup. I agree that DeJesus should be ranked ahead of Silverio, and FWIW I think Sands has a better chance than Gordon of being a productive player in LA.
I'm a Dodger fan, but I have no such illusions about DeJesus.
I think the reason the Dodgers seem so reluctant to acquire a decent LF is because Jerry Sands will be playing there in 2012. Well, that and the McCourts, of course.
I'll echo the expansion analysis request. Speaking as a Raleigh native, I'd much rather see baseball here than Charlotte, but I realize that's probably a pipe dream. I'll take Charlotte though if that's the closest we can get.
I think 4 playoff teams per league is enough. I'd be ok with the idea of going back to two divisions per league and two wild card teams, if it could be done without the kind of alignment gimmicks that had the Atlanta Braves playing in the NL West.
As for scheduling, I'd like to see MLB move Opening Day up a few days. Spring training lasts too long as it is, and I really like the idea of having a Thurs/Friday start to the season instead of Sun/Monday. Also, it seems to me that the regular season really should be done by September 30.
Bochy probably knew, but didn't bother mentioning that little tidbit.
Steve Stone is one of my favorites too. I really miss hearing him and you-know-who doing Cubs games.
The play on words notwithstanding (and not to detract from the point of your article), it grates on my nerves every time I hear a no-hitter referred to as a "no-no". A no-no is something the dog does on the living room floor. It should not be used to describe one of the greatest accomplishments in baseball. Whoever started that should get his face rubbed in the carpet.
Why not, they're trying to do it everywhere else. Picking Lee has "punt" written all over it. A shame he's a QB and not a punter; that would have been funny, even for Dodgers fans.
If Russell is finally getting bumped up, then I would certainly hope that Jerry Sands gets bumped up to A+ to take his place.
I lollered at the 110 percent comment. That's a great line.
I would have liked to see LA hold on to Jon Garland, but I guess that was never in the cards considering he wasn't even on their playoff roster last year, IIRC. As for the McCourt circus, I don't even want to start griping about that for fear I won't be able to stop.
You and me both.
Well, if he could hit off Vicente freakin' Padilla every day, who knows what would happen.
That article on "territorial purgatory" (a good article, btw) was written two years ago, and absolutely nothing has been accomplished since. Another good reason for Bud Selig to be locked up in a phone booth with Frank and Jamie McCourt.
Torre's comments aside, I think it's more about having Ellis play everyday (or what passes for everyday for catchers) than offense vs. defense. That's the reason that Ellis was initially going to start the year in AAA.
I'm a lifelong Dodger fan and North Carolina native so I'm rooting hard for Jerry Sands to beat the odds and make it big. Can't see him in CF though, he's a corner OF or 1B for sure.
Another Dodger fan chiming in here. Kevin Malone at #1 immediately invalidates this whole line of thinking.
Received my copy late last week. Haven't read it yet (my to-read list is LONG) but I skimmed it and it looks intriguing. I've been a SABR member for 3-4 years and I agree it's worth the money.
Orlando Hudson actually received around $8 million last year due to the incentives in his contract, did he not? The $3.3M was only his "base" salary. He's probably asking for $8M or more as his base for this year.
I'm gonna go out on a limb and guess that that Dallas beat writer is Evan Grant, the same genius who convinced himself a couple years ago that the Dodgers were going to cough up both Matt Kemp and Clayton Kershaw (and more) for a year and a half of Teixiera.
That hasn't changed much, spare parts and $$ still works just fine in Baseball Mogul.
No problem at all with dreaming about such a trade; the problem is that so many fans lose sight of the line between dreaming versus trying to rationalize a ridiculous trade into reality.
My point exactly, bld.
Trying to pick up your teammate is fine, but trying to do it at the expense of Dodger fans is not. Besides, many of the news media picked up on Wainwright's comments as if they were true.
Oh, for Pete's sake. Holliday did not lose the ball "in the towels"; at the time that ball was hit things were looking bad for LA and the place was quiet. The towels did not wave until AFTER he dropped the ball. Enough already with Wainwright and his stupid whining. He pitched a great game, leave it at that and keep his yap shut.
Slightly off topic here, but I'd like to see a GM write a book about the simple nuts and bolts to running a franchise over the course of an entire year, i.e. not just the season itself but also ST, winter meetings, FA negotiations, etc., without it getting too bogged down in one single area like the draft or devolving into a "pat me on the back, I'm so good at this" affair. If such a book exists, I'm not aware of it. If it does exist, please point me to it.