News & notes: WBC win, minor league map, MLB pensions & more
A few interesting items I saw over the past couple of days:
World Baseball Classic
Congratulations to Jose Reyes and his teammates as the 8-0 Dominican Republic team captured the World Baseball Classic title on Tuesday night. The tournament may not matter much to me or to most Americans, but that’s clearly not the case around the world.
“I mean, this win is going to go to the whole country of the Dominican Republic because it was hungry waiting for this moment,” said Reyes, the former Mets and Marlins shortstop who is now with the Blue Jays. “We stayed together as a team. We had good communication, good chemistry — that’s why we won everything. Like I said before, this win is going to go to the whole Dominican Republic.” (via MLB.com)
Minor League Map
Ever wondered exactly where every Major League and Minor League ballpark is? Baseball America’s Conor Glassey has you covered, with a Google Map showing exactly that. It would be even cooler if it included all of the independent league ballparks, too. (I guess there are not too many baseball fans in the Dakotas or Wyoming, though…)
Major League Baseball Properties has extended its exclusive arrangement with Topps for another seven years, so the trading card manufacturer will be the only one that can use team names and logos on baseball cards through 2020. Many baseball card bloggers are frustrated by the news, arguing that the Topps monopoly is depriving the hobby of competition and “innovation.”
I’m not sure why you’d look to trading cards for innovation in the first place – it’s the 21st century, and we’re still collecting pieces of cardboard with someone’s picture on them. That’s not exactly a cutting-edge activity in my book. I embrace the tradition of baseball cards – Topps has produced a set every year that the Mets have existed, and I like the idea that I can have an album of cards that goes from Richie Ashburn to Kirk Nieuwenhuis.
And Mets minor league pitcher Collin McHugh may have the tweet of the week on fan mail, baseball cards and autographs.
Major League Pensions
In more serious news, ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin reports that Major League Baseball’s millionaire’s club is moving towards eliminating pensions for all non-uniformed personnel even though the sport’s annual revenues are $8 billion and growing. Mets blogger Metstradamus wants to know where the Wilpon family stands on the issue:
I’d like to know that the people who have screwed over fans and investors alike over the past 15 years with complete incompetence are at least planning to take care of the people that toil for them. Now don’t get me wrong here … I’m not saying that this would affect the amount of money that I spend on this team. I’m not ready to make that declaration yet. And I don’t have a negative pre-conceived notion about what the Wilpons’ stand on this is…. That’s why the Wilpons need to say something. That, and it’s the decent thing to do.
And because it’s fun to pick on the
Florida Miami Marlins. Reporter Tim Elfrink writes:
First the Marlins alienated every taxpayer in Miami with their stadium deal. Then they pissed off every casual fan with a mass offseason firesale. Now the team is burning bridges with the only true-blue Fish fanatics left — longtime season-ticket holders.
The Miami New Times reports that the Marlins have threatened to sue a couple who has had season tickets since 1998 who failed to pay for this year’s season tickets even though they had made a two-year commitment because the team installed a billboard that partially limited their view midway through last season.