Dull baseball is hurt by its greedy players Sun...


August 25, 2002

Dull baseball is hurt by its greedy players

Sun columnist Mike Preston hit the nail on the head when he said the sometimes dull game of professional baseball is losing fan support from all age groups ["Go ahead, strike; game has been out for long while," Aug. 17].

How many times in a game does a batter let the first pitch go by, step out of the box to upset the pace of the pitcher or to get a sign from the third base coach or take time to adjust his batting gloves? And pitchers are required to throw four outside pitches for an intentional walk.

I have no pity for the poor professional baseball players who want to strike when hundreds of thousands of people have lost their jobs while many more hope and pray they don't lose theirs.

The average salary for ballplayers was quoted as $2 million to $3 million per year. If an average person would earn $50,000 a year for 40 years, that would just about equal the pay a professional player would earn in a season that lasts about nine months, including spring training and possibly playoffs.

Is it need or greed that will lead to a strike? All I can say is, shame on them. I will watch high school and rec games for pure sports enjoyment.

Bill Huppert Perry Hall

Players, owners need to enter the real world

Here we go again. For the ninth time in 30 years, major-league baseball players and owners are at odds over which faction should be making more money, as though neither side is making enough now.

The only word I've been able to come up with to describe it is "disgusting."

The players are claiming, "We have to do what we have to do." Wow, how profound! And I love the terms they're using for a possible baseball strike, such as "work stoppage" and "industry shutdown." Gimme a break.

What is this, General Motors? United Airlines?

Why in the world don't both sides just get together, share a great big gulp of reality and play ball.

I think it's time all the involved parties grow up and start trying to live in the real world, like the rest of us have to do.

Mike Brady Catonsville

Some cautionary words of advice for both sides

As the billionaire baseball owners and the millionaire players contemplate a player strike on Aug. 30, we offer the following homespun advice: "Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered."

Iris and Leon Reinstein Baltimore

Don't use Sept. 11 to further an agenda

Major-league baseball and the impending strike have no relevance to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, and those who wish to use it for their own agenda regarding the baseball strike are reprehensible.

People were even petty enough to criticize Florida State football coach Bobby Bowden for using an age-old expression, "Let's Roll," acting instead as if those on the hijacked airliner invented the expression.

If every word we speak and action we take in business (and major-league baseball is a business) must be based on Sept. 11, then the terrorists were the winners.

Greg Gotwalt York, Pa.

Time for baseball fans to take stand on greed

We baseball fans have been perceived as less than bright when flashing signs are displayed at the ballpark to inform us of a "great hit," "great play," "strike three," or to give instructions to "make noise!"

Come on, we're not idiots! The owners must believe we are stupid because we pay $5.75 for a beer ($138 a case) and $4.25 for a hot dog. Even if it's a quarter-pounder, it's $17 a pound.

At the same time, we sit in a taxpayers' stadium with seats costing up to $40 a game. You can choose to stand for a mere $8.

The time has come to demonstrate to the million-dollar players and the clown princes of baseball that we will not support a strike that borders on insanity and is propelled by arrogant greed.

Joe Palmieri Baltimore

New baseball boss? What about Will?

With the baseball players and the owners at an impasse, it is time that a high commissioner of baseball be appointed who would crack some heads together.

An individual uniquely qualified for the position would be George Will, the journalist with a background of love of baseball, fairness, logic and pragmatism.

For years, he has written about the deteriorating relationship between the players and the owners and their mutual disregard for the fans.

With escalating salaries, ticket prices astronomical and fan interest declining, major changes are required and George Will is the man to be the enforcer.

Nelson Marans Silver Spring

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