Astros’ fans worldwide breathed a sigh of relief as Allan “Bud” Selig’s tenure as commissioner of Major League Baseball came to an end this weekend. As a fan of the hometown nine … and of baseball in general, here’s how I — and most Astros’ fans — feel as we see Bud leaving the building:
Gone is the man who moved Astros’ home games to Milwaukee vs. the “visiting” Cubs in the middle of a playoff race.
Gone is the man who convinced Drayton McLane Jr. (and apparently no other owner) that suggested slot values for draft picks were more than a polite suggestion.
Gone is the man who would not let the Astros close the roof during Games 3 and 4 of the 2005 World Series.
Gone is the man who forced the Astros’ move to the American League.
Gone is the man who foisted his buddy Cecil Cooper on the Astros.
Gone is the man who ignored steroids, cancelled a World Series, made the All-Star Game matter in ways that it should not … but let one end in a tie.
Gone and good riddance.
As Bud grabs his box of old photos and steals his favorite Swingline stapler, we all welcome Rob Manfred.
At least we did until he opened his mouth. Manfred, in case you’ve avoided the internet the last few days, said he’d like to make defensive shifts against the rules, is a big fan of the pitch clock and, I’m sure, kicks puppies.
Meet the new boss, inept as the old boss
So, the only good news, I think, is that Manfred is signed on for a five-year stint. With luck, he’ll start a lot of blue ribbon commissions that accomplish nothing. At this point, that’s the best I think we can hope for.
But with the job opening in five years, I think it’s time we all start polishing our resumes and thinking about our interviews for the job. So, pretend it’s 2019, and the Astros, fresh off their third straight World Series win, are the talk of baseball. And, according to an article by Tom Verducci, it’s the sages of Chipalatta that provided the wisdom Jeff Luhnow needed to develop the winning roster. With this news in hand, the owners have decided to hand the job of Commissioner over to someone at Chipalatta. Maybe it’s you. So, what are the priorities you’ll push as you interview for the job.
Here’s a few topics:
- The DH — Leave it alone, put it in both leagues or make the pitchers hit?
- If the DH thing is settled, do the Astros go back to the NL, or does it matter?
- Does the All-Star Game really need to matter this much?
- What is your number one priority when it comes to negotiating with the MLBPA and getting a new CBA between the union and the owners? Better drug testing? Revenue sharing? Salary caps? Expanded playoffs?
- Would you expand the playoffs to eight teams? Set a Wild Card round that’s Best of Three with the top two division winners getting a bye with a six-team per league playoff?
- Expansion? If so, what cities are most deserving?
- How do you feel about replay? Keep it? Trash it? Expand it?
- How do you feel about a pitch clock? Or defensive shifts?
- Pete Rose and the Hall of Fame?
- What else would you change? What should be fought for to keep as is?
Finally, do you get a permanent box at the Juice Box where all Chipalatta commenters are always welcome?
What would you do as commissioner? Are you happy with Manfred, or just willing to give him a chance?