Monday, February 9, 2009

Good Luck Major League Baseball.

I can remember when I was around 6 or 7 years old how much I wanted to be a professional baseball player. Just the thought of sharing the field with greats like Cal Ripken Jr., Don Mattingly, and Nolan Ryan was what drove many young boys to share this same dream. Unfortunately as I grew older the dream of playing in the bigs was replaced by a reality of having a full-time doing things other than playing baseball. For the MLB this is a good thing as those who can't play baseball attend games, buy merchandise and rely on those players to fulfill our dreams as young children. But in the last few years (notable 2000- present) Major League Baseball has started to alienate those die hard fans. Now instead of players playing for the "love" of the game, it has turned into a contest of who can be the next highest paid player. And now we find out MLB tested players in order to decide whether or implement random drug (steroid) testing. A-Rod, admitted he used in 2001-2003 because of "the pressure" he was under to perform while he was a member of the Texas Rangers. He also was the highest paid player in baseball history. Manny Ramirez has been offered many millions of dollars which he has turned down without even flinching. What has happened to the players who love the game and not the riches? Granted, you play sports at the pro level you will be rewarded financially, but to the tune of 250 million for 8 years (A-Rod Texas Rangers contract)??? Add into the mix the Mitchell report, Clemens vs. McNamee, a silent Mark McGuire, an opportunistic Jose Canseco and a possible jail term for Barry Bonds, the greats of our childhood may have not been as great as we had imagined. If players actually played the game for the history and the pure enjoyment of it, rather than the big checks and records, maybe the historic franchises would once again be historic (sorry Chicago, but it has been awhile), with a roster full of perennial all-stars who want to win rather than have an ego competition on who can cash the bigger check. Good Luck Major League Baseball, you're gonna need it!