A Sad State In An Old Rivalr

July 02, 2007 |

Here’s some more information on what happened Saturday night in Pittsburgh.

Some of those quotes sound strangely familiar, don’t they?  As Nestor alluded to in his most recent blog, the notion of more fan protests like Free The Birds seem to be happening.  I believe that whatever numbers of fans "walking out" are reported, any message we can send to ownership about our dissatisfaction with the club’s failure to compete is important.  It seems, by all indications, that even though it’s been fifteen (!) straight losing baseball summers in Pittsburgh, their fans are not as ardent in making their voices heard as we are here in Baltimore.  Only one hundred people walked out?  Where is the passion in the Steel City for their once proud Pirates?  Or are they just like us, tolerating and expecting losing baseball until football training camp begins?  What a ridiculous and sad state of affairs MLB is in lately.  When fans’ passion turns to apathy, franchises are in real danger.  There’s plenty of apathy here, or didn’t you notice the seas of green seats at every home game (Yankees and Red Sox games don’t count).

I’ve said it for the past two weeks on my show, and I’ll keep beating on it: Spend the MASN money this offseason!  Get deeply involved in the A-Rod sweepstakes (he absolutely WILL opt out of his contract at season’s end), chase after Torii Hunter and/or Ichiro, improve the bullpen with a guy like Scott Linebrink and show US, the fans, that all those lawsuits and countersuits over the past two years weren’t just another excuse to line ownership’s pockets.  Then I’ll believe and care again.  I might even buy tickets for my family for a few games next year, which is something I haven’t done for the past seven years.

Here’s the scariest part: We’ve become "Brothers In Arms" with Pittsburgh fans!  How long ago do 1971 and 1979 feel when you think about that!

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Jose Canseco turns 43 today.  Isn’t it amazing that baseball’s seemingly biggest buffoon has become the only player to tell the truth about what really happened in MLB locker rooms over the past twenty years?  Whatever happened to all those threatened lawsuits over defamation of character and libel by the players he named in "Juiced"?  In this case, for certain, the silence is deafening.

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Congratulations to Ken Griffey Jr. and Barry Bonds for making the NL All-Star roster.  Griffey has returned to form this year after numerous injury plagued seasons, and has always been a solid ambassador of the game.  Bonds?  Well….you can judge him for yourselves.  I say he’s certainly deserving based on his numbers this year.  I also maintain he’s the greatest hitter of this generation, steroids or not.  You’ve still got to put the bat on the ball.  Also, remember this: We’ll never know how many pitchers he got hits off of who were doing the same stuff he was.  Don’t believe me?  Since MLB instituted their steroids testing program in 2005, 10 of the 16 suspended players have been pitchers.  I rest my case.

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Congratulations also to Brian Roberts as the Birds’ lone representative for the All-Star Game.  It’s well deserved.  Look at his numbers and tell me he’s not one of the best overall second basemen currently in the game.  And a solid leadoff hitter as well.

mark@wnst.net

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