MLB and crass commercialism

added 4/2/2004 by Susan and Darrell Pittman

The New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Devil Rays opened the 2004 MLB season by playing in Japan. Of course, the U.S. telecasts came on the air at 4:30 a.m. stateside, like anybody here was going to stay up late to watch those storied match-ups.

Worst of all, the teams' uniforms were plastered with corporate advertisements, a la NASCAR.

Major League Baseball needs to decide, once and for all, whether there is anything they aren't willing to sell for a price, or bilk U.S. taxpayers out of for new ballparks.

They don't seem to understand that many of their fans believe that MLB are the custodians of the dignity of a century-old game which they love. In this steroid scandal environment, with excessive player salaries and excessive commercialism in the part of the owners, they have to address the concerns of fans and taxpayers (who pay the bills) if they hope to survive.

U.S. taxpayers have to decide the same question in the converse... are hundreds of millions of dollars in bonds and indebtedness worth it for keeping their MLB ballclubs in town?

These decisions will decide much in future fan support for MLB, as said support is already on the decline.

It's time for both the owners and players to do the right thing and realize that sometimes enough is enough. If one demands too much from the Cash Cow, sometimes their cow (us) will go to other pastures.

-- Darrell Pittman

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