Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Athletes being stupid: Bud Selig and MLB

By Jeff

OK, this is not a case of an athlete being stupid, but an entire league and its commissioner.

The New York Mets were playing at home Sunday, 10 years to the day that 9/11 occurred. MLB planned to honor those brave men and women killed in the terrorists attacks of that day, and all of the families affected by the tragedy. All teams were to wear hats with the American flag on them.

It was a nice and subtle tribute to victims, but the Mets wanted to do more. And who can blame them? The World Trade Center attack was in their back yard. These players wanted to show more support for victims by wearing NYPD and NYFD hats during the game for one day. MLB said no.

The team didn't want to wear them the rest of the season. They just wanted to do it Sunday. What possible harm could come from it? MLB VP of baseball operations Joe Torre came out and said it was a unanimity issue.

I understand the importance of branding, but this was a terrible decision and the explanation was even worse. The Mets play in New York. The game was in New York. There was a lot more emotion there than in any other city in the world that day. Let the team show their support of their city's public servants who sacrificed their lives for strangers.

Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey tweeted that the Mets planned on rebelling against the memo telling them wearing the NYPD/NYFD hats was forbidden during the game, but the hats disappeared when game-time arrived. Mets players also said the memo stated fines would be handed down to those who wore the hats. MLB has since come out and denied both of these allegations.

I'm not sure why players would lie about that, so I'm going to believe them until the memo is released. And if you think about it, don't you think MLB would release the memo to the public to show that the players were exaggerating the contents of the memo? It would save them a huge headache, but I don't see that ever happening.

On top of everything else, reports have come out that commissioner Bud Selig was "irate" that the Mets went public with MLB's order to not wear the hats. Apparently he thought it embarrassed baseball and that the Mets threw MLB "under the bus".

Maybe Selig should have thought about the consequences of such a stupid rule. Of course the Mets are going to go public with this. Why wouldn't they? The league deserves to be thrown under the bus for making such a bone-headed decision. What a d-bag.

The Eagles - New York Minute

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