**….Growing up in New York City, is a blessing to a young boy who loves Baseball. It once upon a time was played openly in the streets as “stick-ball”, where circular sewer covers place eqi-distanced from each other could serve as distance markers as well as Home or Second Base. In school yards as Softball. In Neighborhood Parks sometime as both. “Punchball” or “Off the curb” on a city corner with any combination of sewers or Telepoles that had at least one for each base. As many ways as a 9 year old could create a new form of the game he loved, it was done. To me that has always been the Spirit of Baseball. So you see, before you read any further, I am very biased on this subject. It has always been true to me, that the Fan, not the player, not the Club nor it’s owner(s) or a league or conbination of Leagues is the One item that made everything else work. It was the Child. It was you, it was me and the next poster to read this, we are Baseball, in all it’s forms, all it’s dreams. We are Baseballs past and it’s future. We are Fans.
…..The draft of players might well be my second largest beef with MLBB after it’s failure to deal with Steroids.. It rewards teams for losing, Games, Players and fans. See what I did there. I capitilized Games and Players, but I left fans in small print. I did it to make a point, we are not considered or rewarded for our dedication to a Baseball Club. In fact we’re ignored. Our love and support of the game and our Team means nothing in terms of picks. That’s wrong. I have a solution and it’s what I consider a “common sense” solution. Yes Balance is always a good thing, but it isn’t the only thing. Drafting of rounds 1, 2, 3 should be based on three criteria not ONE. Compensation should not be a “Christmas” Gift for those clubs who are not reinvesting in their Club or their Fans. A fairer solution tells anyone “award” clubs who also do these things well. Show small Markets an incentive to keep players in years 5 or 6 who are proving themselves. Use the Tax money in these cases only, not as a “Welfare Check” to owners who don’t have enough time to count their money to begin with.
…..I fully understand the “need” of balance in the game. Here again Balanced is not restricted to one item. Balance is just that. Viewing the items necessary for the good of the game and using balance correctly for each item. The fan was left out of the MLBB frist year player Draft. The loser was considered. The Teams that allow losing to effect their fan base is rewarded for losing. The team that refuses to re-sign its young stars is rewarded. Now Bud Selig suggest the team who doesn’t sign it’s first pick should recieve 2 first picks the following year. All this maybe good for the Players, their agents and even the Owners but to the fan in small town America or it’s largest City, it stinks. The fan in both these area’s is the loser. To the fan in the great small town City of Pittsburgh, it’s losing for 17 years in a row. To a Met fan in the New York Area, it’s knowing if your first pick at # 65 isn’t right on target your dead in the water somewhere down the line.
…..Attendance needs to be rewarded. That isn’t rewarding the Club, it’s rewarding the Fan who is again the first step in all this progression. It tells Management of any club, by serving the FANS the club too shall be rewarded. People who will suggest to me that large cities would have an “unfair advantage” no more then what today’s system provides owners who do little to next to nothing for their fans to begin with. St. Louis is a small town City in America, so is St. Paul and Cincinatti. They are small town Cities whose records show success with the fans can bring success on the field. Fans often drive 150 miles or more to see their Cards, or Reds. Do You see where I’m going with this. Balance isn’t just who has the highest attendence, but the fans do indicate through attendance how they view their teams attempts at being “fan friendly”. You don’t need to be WS Champions in the South or Mid-West to be your area’s favorite team, you need to be “Fan friendly” doing whatever you can and the FANS do respond.
…****.Increase in attendence needs to be rewarded just as much as “poor performance” does if not more so. If Round 1 is dedicated to the placement of a teams finish , then round TWO, should represent the FANS interest in all this. In less then a year, the Pirates dealt away Nady, Bay and McLouth. For that the Pirates should be ashamed. That might be one of the best outfields found anywhere in the game today. Yelling “poverty” is not an excuse for poor management. Baseball should not reward Organizations who have a record making their FAN base both the Victum and the criminal of the offense. This is the kind of thinking that says…” She was raped because she was beautiful, it’s her own fault “. Owner’s are rapping the Fans of it’s game each and everyday accross this country in the name of “Poverty”…it’s about time for MLBB to acknowledge it’s error’s and fix them. Make then fairer to all the Fans in America not to a few losing Owners who are laughing all the way to the Bank.