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Selig Him Short?
2004-08-05 23:06
by Mike Carminati

Apparently, the owners are ready to offer Bud Selig an extension. My first thought was, who'll reset Doug Pappas counter.

Not so long ago, it seemed ludicrous that he would even fulfill his current contract let alone get an extension. This is the man whose watch witnessed a season-ending strike and the only year without a World Series since 1904. He in essence disobeyed his own rules by accepting a personal loan from Minnesota owner Carl Pohlad. He threatened to disband two major-league teams for the first time one hundred years. He orchestrated a ring-around-the-rosey series of franchise sales that resulted in the charitable fund that had owned the Red Sox getting less than the best possible deal and in orphaning one franchise for going on four seasons. Oh, and he's toyed with the rules of the game in a way that evinces total disrespect for its traditions.

Ludicrous, right?

Well, not from the owners' point of view. Selig avoided a work stoppage at the end of a collective bargaining agreement for the first. He was able to institute a soft salary cap by which all but the Yankees have since abided. He was the first commissioner who was able to get any concessions from the players since Marvin Miller started twisting them around his little finger. Selig improved the lot of three of the said owners and helped get those pesky minority owners off Jeffery Loria's back. He tried to help Pohlad out of his Twins deal and was only stopped by those annoying courts and their laws. And sure, attendance isn't up to pre-strike levels, but it's pretty high and given the sweet deals that the owners have gotten in all the new stadiums, the owners must be making out better than ever (though we'll never know since they won't open their books).

So could the seemingly ludicrous, Selig getting a contract extension, become logical? Hey, anything's possible when George Bush can run on his record and actually be re-electable.

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