Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Best Buds?

The Daily News's Sam Donnellon has quietly become one of Philadelphia's better sports columnists, but when I saw the headline of his piece today ("I'm a Bud man"), I steeled myself to fire off a scorching e-mail to him for having the temerity to defend Bud Selig.

Then I read the column.

Donnellon details the beneficial changes to the game of baseball (movie ads on bases notwithstanding) that have occurred under Selig's watch, and points out that many of them came after Selig made "hard and unpopular decisions." I'm still not certain that the Bud-man pulled the trigger on those moves entirely for the good of the game -- certainly lining the pockets of his fellow owners had to at least cross his mind -- but Donnellon still made me take a fresh look at the commish and his impact. As the column concludes: "The commissioner few of us wanted has his sport on solid ground. He did so ... by having the vision to run baseball like the entertainment business it is, and not some dead-weight corporation too tied to its glorious past to recognize and react to the reality of its present and future. He wasn't always smooth, right, or even forthcoming. He still isn't easy to like. But there's no arguing with the results."


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