Thursday, May 29, 2008

It's just a game, Bud.

Do you remember the teams you played for in Little League? You know, the cheap t-shirt "jerseys", adjustable cap, and baggy pants? Remember finding out what number you wore and racing home to see who had that number on the actual big league squad?

I sure do. I've played for the Orioles, A's, Brewers, Marlins, Reds, Indians and Yankees at some point... great memories.

Too bad future generations won't have this chance.

Major League Baseball will begin cracking down on the use of nicknames (Marlins, Rockies, etc.) in Little Leagues all around the country. I understand that those are copyrighted, but isn't this a step too far? Is it really a crime to let 6 year-olds chase a ball around the field in an over-sized Padres shirt?

Shouldn't MLB do everything possible to attract younger fans? And shouldn't they concern themselves just a little more with performance enhancing drug use, horrendous officiating, and ballooning salaries?

I don't know about you, but having "Cleveland" plastered across my chest wouldn't have had the same allure, especially since I lived in Fairfax Station, VA at the time.

This isn't the first bizarre move MLB has made to protect its oh-so-precious image. In recent years they've attempted to halt fantasy baseball over use of official statistics and player names and routinely police the internet for video clips of its broadcasts.

Because heaven forbid I watch a funny mascot accident - including seeing all the corporate sponsors plastered all over the walls - for free. Wouldn't want to make the game more accessible or anything.

So come on, Commissioner Selig, relax. We all know that your sport is big business, but to kids (and future generations of fans everywhere) it's just a game.

In other Bad Baseball news from Wednesday night...

The Royals bullpen imploded against the Twins in the 9th and 10th innings. Ramon Ramirez allowed 4 runs on 4 hits in the 9th (the first two outs of it, anyways), but things only got worse when Joel Peralta surrendered two runs on two hits in an inning and a third to blow what was left of the save opportunity as well as earn the loss for Kansas City ... The Pirates Tom Gorzellany had a rough start in Cincinnati, lasting only two-thirds of an inning and allowing 6 runs on 2 walks and 4 hits ... Sucks to be Braves starter Jo-Jo Reyes. He struck out 9 and alllowed just two hits over 7 innings of work but still picked up the loss against the Brewers.

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