Friday, August 15, 2014


Oh, to be a fly on the wall. Fortunately, though, we've got that covered for you--with that truly unique baseball correspondent Buzzy the Fly, who not only survived a near-death experience at the hands of Commissioner-elect Rob Manfred, but has been buoyed by his participation in a special "pesticide resistance program" (which was not funded, despite rumors to the contrary, by our shadowy sponsors "Fright Quotes R Us").

We really need winged journalists these days, given that baseball's coverage often seems as "embedded" (there are those FQ's again--damn, but it's habit-forming!) as what we had to endure during the Iraq fiasco. Reading the news articles at is the perfect cross between the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Pravda.

Buzzy, of course, has a somewhat different story about how things went down in the Baltimore putsch, much of it revolving around the real reason why resistance to Budzilla's template for corruption finally reared its ugly head.

But the bottom line is that it's still "the bottom line" that prompted the mini-revolt. Buzzy's recordings indicate that the "petulance quotient" for billionaires has followed the general trend of the stock market over the past five years.

Jerry Reinsdorf, "light-headed" back in July, was not
really the instigator of the "mini-revolt" against Rob Manfred
earlier in the week.
It's not enough to have a wired monopoly with carefully calibrated bylaws that skirt the level of scrutiny that baseball deserves to have placed on it (though, to be fair, one could say this about all too many aspects of American business).

Territorial rights and old grudges were not the true battleground in Baltimore, as has been widely reported. Buzzy's tapes indicate that it's the future of media that was instrumental in whipping up a last-minute frenzy of factionalizing. And part of the fallout in that area has to do with who will control the creation of "advanced data."

Now, none of these folk can be seen as the "good guys" (FQ alert). But it was Budzilla who decided to leave the "advanced data/media" issues in the roiling region of endless entrepreneurial kerfuffle. And his hand-picked successor Manfred will do the same. As certain owners have discovered, that is actually more of a constraining scenario for the use and growth of such information products than it is an opportunity or a strategic advantage.

This situation was not "resolved," it was simply tabled. But what it means for the next seven years is that we'll have more of the same with respect to the blighted vision of the game that has prevailed. The reign of an approach utilizing ineffectual committees whose answers are known before the questions are even posed will continue. Manfred will do his best to live up to The Who's dismay in "Won't Get Fooled Again": "Meet the new boss...same as the old boss."

But it's not an issue that will stay tabled for long. We may need to have Buzzy train an army of winged correspondents to keep up with this.