10. Fans vote for 30th man on All-Star roster. This is just stupid. What else can I say about it? And then they can vote for him 25 times online with one email address. This allowed Never Surrender to go to the 2008 game, he and his .260+ average.
9. The 2002 All-Star game tie. It’s an exhibition game. Why not start the roster over, let guys who already played come back into the game? Anything but a tie. And then to not do anything about it so it wouldn’t happen again. I mean, in 2008 it almost happened again. Why not expand the rosters to 35 and let those five extras be pitchers – relief pitchers? It’s darn tough for a relief pitcher who is not a closer to make the team. Why not designate five spots for middle relievers?
8. The Nationals debacle. What a mess that move was and still is. By not allowing the Nationals to spend any money on their farm system during those first years, it set the franchise back several years (and with Leatherpants still running the show, who knows how long it will take them to be competitive?) And remember, the move finally came to fruition after the alleged racketeering that took place with then Expos-owner Loria when there was talk of league contraction.
7. Exploiting Latin America to fish for players. For every feel good Pedro or Big Papi story, hundreds of other kids have been mistreated, lied to, extorted, and any of the other numerous wrongs bestowed upon them. It’s one thing to provide the opportunity for good players to play, but the way it’s done is exploitation.
6. Expansion. Under Selig, MLB added the Tampa Bay Devil Rays and the Arizona Diamondbacks only six years after adding two other unnecessary teams – the Florida Marlins and the Colorado Rockies – were established. This thinned every roster and weakened pitching.
5. “This Time It Counts.” Giving home field advantage to whatever team wins the All-Star game. And despite the fact that everyone else on the planet thinks it’s stupid, Selig likes it, so it’s here to stay for the time being.
4. Sometimes being dumb means NOT doing something. Selig did not fight to keep baseball as an Olympic sport. Why? Did he see it as competition for his pet World Baseball Classic? (I love the Classic, btw.) Letting it die as an Olympic sport not only killed the actual games in the Olympics, but it killed baseball in countries whose programs depended on national funding to keep them afloat.
3. Steroids. Letting it happen. Spoiling the careers of some should be Hall of Famers by turning a blind eye to what apparently everyone in baseball knew was going on. This is Selig’s legacy.
2. Keeping Pete out of the Hall. The man with the most hits in the history of baseball, a man who has paid his dues in jail, should be there. Period. What people sometimes forget is that Bud banned Pete for life in the same year that he reinstated Steinbrenner after George paid a gambler to get dirt on Dave Winfield.
1. 1994. ‘nuff said.