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Old 03-20-2012, 05:12 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
I think we ought to go back to 1981 style, and have the commissioner (then Bowie Kuhn) announce at midseason which teams are going to be in the playoffs, no matter what. Especially if the Yankees and Dodgers are two of the teams so anointed. And then disqualify the two overall division leaders in the NL from getting in the post season at all, which is OK because they were in the media backwaters of St. Louis and Cincinnati. The Reds won more games than any other team in all of baseball, and were not invited to the playoffs. The Yankees and Dodgers were, even though they played exactly .500 ball after Kuhn gave them a pass and guaranteed them their place in the post season.

The most shameful day in the history of baseball.
In retrospect, the system employed backfired when teams with the best total season records failed to qualify. Of course MLB didn't know in advance that this would happen, had nothing in the way of precedent for determining winners in a non linear season, and had to come up with something. Had they not made the decision to go with split seasons, there would have been the outrage of those teams which had started slowly, and now would be denied any chance to get back in the race because there were no longer enough games left to stage a comeback. Whatever they decided to do, it was going to generate some unfairness somewhere.

They guessed wrong and wound up with the unfairness to the Reds and Cardinals. Bad luck, but you interpret this misfortune as "the most shameful day in the history of baseball." And just in case your readers are not feeling the proper boiling emotions over this disgrace, I noticed that you didn't write "The Reds and Cardinals failed to qualify under the system used", you wrote that they were "disqualified" which they were not. One must first qualify before one may be disqualified. But, better for the story that it makes it seem like some active and evil decision rather than simply the a result that could not have been seen as certain in advance. Letting us know that your choices of words here are no accident, you also characterized the Reds as not being "invited" to the playoffs. The playoffs were by invitation? Again....not bad luck, rather, a deliberate snub ..you would have us believe.

I guess these little deceptions are in support of your larger thesis, that it was the product of some conspiracy designed to benefit large tv market teams such as the Dodgers and Yankees, at the expense of smaller market teams.

You forgot to offer any of the evidence which backs such a theory. If you do have some smoking gun meno which reveals it all, please share.

Finally, we are left wondering what other shameful days in ML history finished below your identified winner. Pete Rose confessing that he had been lying to everyone for ten years and was indeed guilty of having bet on the Reds...that was less shameful? That hideous spectacle before Congress of Mark McGwire's "Not here to talk about the past" along with Sammy Sosa's sudden loss of command of the English language..that wasn't as shameful? The day the White Sox players agreed to throw the World Series in return for money...not as shameful? Juan Marichal bashing Johnny Roseboro with his bat? The '94 strike which didn't have any postseason much less one tainted by a split season seeding.....not as shameful?

Why jtur, your post was the singular most outrageous posting in the entire history of hyperbole!
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Old 03-21-2012, 02:51 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
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Do you think if the Reds and Cardinals and Brewers and Rangers had been in first place on the day of the strike, with the big media market teams within a game of the top, the commissioner (sitting in his New York office surrounded by all his big media cronies) would have guaranteed small markets in the central time zone backwater their place in the post season, and left the Yankees and Dodgers and As and Phillies to try to earn their place in a start-over-again 50-game second half?

Yes, when the commissioner does shameful things that cast into doubt the integrity of an entire championship season, it is worse than a couple of individual players misbehaving. The commissioner has only one job: To preserve the appearance of integrity. He failed badly.

If somebody walked up to you on your jobsite and told you you could make additional tens of millions of dollars if you take these pills and then just keep showing up at the office, would you be tempted to do anything shameful? It is a credit to baseball players that so few of them took PEDs, when so many executive and media moguls were willing to eagerly pay them the millions for the enhanced performance. The same executives and moguls that lunged at the opportunity to lock the New York/Philly and California markets into the post season in July. Yes, the commissioner could see the future perfectly clearly. In July he saw TV networks parking their trucks outside major media market stadiums in October, with highly suspect clairvoyance.

Last edited by jtur88; 03-21-2012 at 03:16 PM..
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Old 03-21-2012, 05:15 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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jtur88

Quote:
Do you think if the Reds and Cardinals and Brewers and Rangers had been in first place on the day of the strike, with the big media market teams within a game of the top, the commissioner (sitting in his New York office surrounded by all his big media cronies) would have guaranteed small markets in the central time zone backwater their place in the post season, and left the Yankees and Dodgers and As and Phillies to try to earn their place in a start-over-again 50-game second half?
Of course. To believe otherwise is to believe that the integrity of the game itself was disregarded in favor of a deliberate fix which benefitted the Yankees and Dodgers. I would certainly entertain any actual evidence you have for making anyone believe that this actually happened. Otherwise all you are offering is ungrounded conjuecture on the game's honesty.


Quote:
The commissioner has only one job: To preserve the appearance of integrity.
You are stuck in the Ford Frick era. Once free agency was introduced and the MLBPA started exercising real muscle, they stopped pretending that the baseball commissioner was anything other than the owner's lawyer. In fact, in 1981 when the strike took place, the reigning commissioner was Bowie Kuhn whose last job had been....owner's lawyer.

There was a brief attempt to revive the illusion of a commissioner for the good of all when Bart Giamatti was hired. Of course he wasn't hired for his vision of what was good for baseball, he was hired despite it. The Peter Ueberroth years had been a disaster, the climax being MLBPA's successful lawsuit for owner collusion. They dumped him with a year still to go on his contract and trotted out Giamatti for his image of intergity that they wished to project to the public. It was never intended to allow him to exercise any real power, but Bart sort of went off the reservation and tried to act like the image was reality. The owners caught a break when he died prematurely and was replaced by the less dynamic and easier to dispose of Fay Vincent.

After Vincent was ashcanned, from '92 to '98 there was no office of commissioner, Selig was just Executive Council Chairman for the owners group, all illusions of representing the players as well were dropped. They rewarded Selig for the steroid induced attendance surge during those years, making him the official Commissioner in '98, but everyone understands that he is still the owner's represenative. The players are represented by their Union officials.





Quote:
if somebody walked up to you on your jobsite and told you you could make additional tens of millions of dollars if you take these pills and then just keep showing up at the office, would you be tempted to do anything shameful?
Sure, but I'm hopelessly corrupt with an impressive talent for getting away with things.
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:58 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,221,895 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
Of course. To believe otherwise is to believe that the integrity of the game itself was disregarded in favor of a deliberate fix which benefitted the Yankees and Dodgers..
Just as you say there can be no disqualification without a prior qualification, there can be no "fix" if it was already mutually understood among all parties that the sole objective of MLB is to maximize TV advertising revenues. What better way to do that than to make sure the post season games are played in NYC and California. Nothing needed to be "fixed" to simply declare unilaterally that that is what will happen.

Kuhn had the best of all worlds. What he did was for the benefit of the media, who of course raised not a whimper of protest over the affair, and most fans never even became aware of the foul smell in the air.

By the way, having the largest number of wins in the course of a season did indeed "qualify" the Reds to be in the post season, until Kuhn changed the rules in July.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:51 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
By the way, having the largest number of wins in the course of a season did indeed "qualify" the Reds to be in the post season, until Kuhn changed the rules in July.
Well, you aren't thinking very clearly here. The Reds obviously could not have compiled the best total record in their division until the season ended. Kuhn's actions in July could not possibly be based on such advance knowledge.

My real point, so that it isn't lost in sideshows, is that your characterization of the post season qualifiers in '81 as something especially shameful, is vacuuous. There was no conspiracy to help the Yankees and Dodgers, that is all in your head. I asked you twice for your evidence and it is apparent that you have none to offer apart from the ungrounded conclusion..."If it helped the big market teams, it must have been deliberate."

Further, as previously noted, no matter what system they came up with to adjust for the strike, there would be teams which gained advantages and teams which lost advantages. While you invent some bizarre conspiracy theory out of nothing, I would apply Occam's razor and conclude that the reason they did what they did was so more teams would be in the race for the post season in the second half. If they had simply resumed play as a single season, there would have been teams which were obviously all but already eliminated. Fans do not turn out for such teams, but they will come to watch a contender, even if exceptional manipulations were involved in making them contenders that year.

So, which is more likely? That MLB acted to try and maximize interest and attendance for the second half...or your sinister fantasy?


My complaint is with your extremism.
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Old 03-21-2012, 11:15 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post

Further, as previously noted, no matter what system they came up with to adjust for the strike, there would be teams which gained advantages and teams which lost advantages..
But Kuhn wouldn't have been able to pick and choose which teams gained advantage, based on information already in his possession. I understand that you cannot grasp that concept, and if you don't want to try harder, that's your concern. Further, I doubt if much criticism would arise if he had said "All games scheduled for non-strike dates will be played. The team in each division with the best overall record will proceed to the playoffs, according the existing and prevailing formula for determining post-season play." I have no doubt that you can finagle some kind of blatant unfairness out of that, but don't be overly optimistic that I will be impressed with it.
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Old 03-22-2012, 06:59 AM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
But Kuhn wouldn't have been able to pick and choose which teams gained advantage, based on information already in his possession. I understand that you cannot grasp that concept, and if you don't want to try harder, that's your concern. Further, I doubt if much criticism would arise if he had said "All games scheduled for non-strike dates will be played. The team in each division with the best overall record will proceed to the playoffs, according the existing and prevailing formula for determining post-season play." I have no doubt that you can finagle some kind of blatant unfairness out of that, but don't be overly optimistic that I will be impressed with it.
You imagine a conspiracy, are unable to offer any evidence, much less proof that such a thing took place, and then want to know why I am unable to grasp this obvious "truth."

Either present your evidence, or admit that you concocted our theory out of nothing.

You have no such evidence, do you?

But that doesn't matter if you really want to believe something does it? That is the basis for religious faith.

And that is all you have going here, isn't it? Your faith that your private eccentricities somehow or other must be valid. That any outcome of which you disapprove must have been engineered by folks you view as the evil enemy.
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Old 03-22-2012, 08:15 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,221,895 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
You imagine a conspiracy, are unable to offer any evidence, much less proof that such a thing took place, and then want to know why I am unable to grasp this obvious "truth."

Either present your evidence, or admit that you concocted our theory out of nothing.

You have no such evidence, do you?

But that doesn't matter if you really want to believe something does it? That is the basis for religious faith.

And that is all you have going here, isn't it? Your faith that your private eccentricities somehow or other must be valid. That any outcome of which you disapprove must have been engineered by folks you view as the evil enemy.
Nope. I have no proof. The fact that I personally possess no proof and no compelling interest in gathering such proof does not by itself make your contrarian position true. I have only circumstantial evidence, and I would not send Bowie Kuhn to prison for ten-to-twenty at hard labor with circumstantial evidence. But I can bring my circumstantial evidence to light for open minded people to view, and enable them to make their own judgments about its validity.

I also have no proof that it rained last night, but water standing in my parking lot this morning is pretty good circumstantial evidence. I could get such proof, but since it not a life and death matter to me, I won't bother. If anything arises today which is a life and death matter to you, please feel welcome to gather whatever factual evidence you might need in order to satisfy yourself. If this is it, then knock yourself out.

However, I do know this. Little proof is needed to show that the Yankees and the Dodgers KNEW that they could play .500 ball in the second half (which they did), and still be assured of being in the playoffs and have a chance to meet in the world series (which they did), and in fact they could have lost every game in the second half and still played in the World Series. All four of the teams given that papal dispensation just happened (by pure chance, in your opinion) to lie within the world's two wealthiest media markets---a fact which (in your opinion) had escaped the attention of the commissioner's office. That the teams were aware of that is abundantly obvious, unless you can prove that the Yankees and Dodgers were very stupid (have you any proof that they were?). You may think that such a scenario is good for baseball, but I don't, and I lay that embarrassing outcome squarely on the shoulders of the commissioner, and I seriously doubt that he would have given the same comfort to the Reds and Brewers, had the shoe been on that foot, and if he did, the media would have screamed bloody murder about the unfairness of giving four teams a pass for the remainder of a season in which they had already retroactively clinched a playoff spot. Predicting what the New York-centric media will do requires no very high standard of proof.

And there is the "nothing" from which I admit that I have concocted my theory. Go ahead and nominate Bowie Kuhn for sainthood, if you wish, for this wondrous deed that you behold. But I have enough circumstantial evidence to demur.

Last edited by jtur88; 03-22-2012 at 08:57 AM..
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Old 03-22-2012, 08:55 AM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
40,825 posts, read 18,553,245 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
All four of the teams given that papal dispensation just happened (by pure chance, in your opinion) to lie within the world's two wealthiest media markets. .
You don't even have your facts straight. The four first half winners were New York and Oakland in the AL and Los Angeles and Philadelphia in the NL. That is four markets, not two. If the facts are in conflict with your thesis, the solution is to misrepresent the facts?

Unless of course you are utilizing "faith math" which is like regular math only it always comes out in support of your predispositions.

The Cards ran into some bad luck in '81, bad luck which you wish everyone to believe was the product of a deliberate conspiracy because it just could not have been anything else.

If the Cards had been first half winners in '81, we would not be hearing a peep from you about how outrageous and shameful all this was. It would have just been some other team's bad luck.
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Old 03-22-2012, 11:47 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,221,895 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandstander View Post
You don't even have your facts straight. The four first half winners were New York and Oakland in the AL and Los Angeles and Philadelphia in the NL. That is four markets, not two. If the facts are in conflict with your thesis, the solution is to misrepresent the facts?.
Philadelphia here is regarded as a part of the grater market of the upper east coast, Boston to Washington, where any team qualifies as being a satisfactory participant in the ratings race for the post season (see next paragraph). Compared to, say, Milwaukee, Cincinnati, and the ratings-fatal Montreal. Of course, two of the four were the Yankees and Dodgers, upon whom I concentrated my argument, but Philly and the Bay, not really necessary, just put a lock on the deal. Same applies to the entirety of California, and as long as all games involve teams of interest in those two regions, the networks are happy with the Brinks trucks pulling into their vaults and will keep funneling their ad revenues into MLB. That is not a misrepresentation of the facts, it is merely at odds with the way you choose to define a market, as you clutch at smaller and smaller straws.

Since they started releasing game-by-game viewership numbers in 2001, there have been five series involving the Yankees or the Red Sox. Those five series averaged 21-million viewers watching Game 1. (I counted only game one, because other factors contribute to viewership in subsequent games.) Those were in the top six, along with the Giants-Angels series (aided by both the California market and the Bonds hype). The five series that did not have the Yanks and Sox averaged 15-million. If the Yanks or the Red Sox are in the series, the viewership is 40% higher than if they are not in it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_S...vision_ratings

What you guess I might have said if the Cards were in is no more relevant to the discussion than what you did say when the A's were actually one of the teams anointed, which in your view was perfectly fair. In all fairness to the A's, they (and only they) did play above .500 after Bowie guaranteed them their playoff spot.

Your last post added nothing whatsoever to your argument, and I won't comment further until, in the unlikely event, you do.

Last edited by jtur88; 03-22-2012 at 12:34 PM..
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