Facing accusations of collusion by new head of the players' union Michael Weiner, commissioner Bud Selig is standing his ground.
"That's fine. They're entitled to their opinion," Selig said Tuesday at a meeting of the Baseball Writers' Association of America.
"Given the world we live in and what's happened in the last 18 months, I think this is one sport where I can't even fathom that anybody could think that. Player compensation hasn't gone down. We have many clubs struggling, and even those that have done remarkably well, remember, are very aggressive in their marketing and their discounting," he said. (ESPN)
While an investigation continues, suspicion is in the air. Players' agents and union members believe that a planned and organized conspiracy to keep salaries down has taken place.
"There are too many things that need to be explained," said Seth Levinson, who represented nearly a dozen free agents following the 2008 season. "In my experience, there are no coincidences in a monopoly." (ESPN)
In a time of an economic downturn in this country, it seems very hard to believe that the issue of players salaries has to do with anything other than decreased revenues, which are prevalent across the board in all businesses in this country.
Still, so- called “superagent” Scott Boras has seized the opportunity to cry foul.
"I think the clubs uniformly felt they were taking the momentum of a national event -- that being the economy -- and suggesting that that was going to have an impact on their revenues," Boras said.
"I think they were attempting to leverage that into a belief structure, that the value of players has gone down because there's a perception that baseball will suffer because of the economy. After experiencing the biggest blow of the economy in the fall of 2008, we know that baseball has stood its ground and still has an extraordinary revenue base."
I find it quite appalling that Boras would accuse anyone of using an economic downturn to their advantage.
The owners are feeling the pinch of the economy and it is being passed down to the players. It is that simple. There is no foul play taking place here.
Selig was quick to say as much, "Some of us, let me be as blunt as I can be, have to live in the real world, not in some make-believe little scenario that doesn't exist. And I mean that very, very sincerely," Selig said.
"They can say whatever they want to say. I wouldn't even waste my time reacting to that." (ESPN).
I have never been much of a fan of Selig, but I believe he is dead-on in his assessment of the current events transpiring here. I am very happy to see that he is holding his ground against these baseless accusations.
I have little doubt that this will pass in time.