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Well if Rio gets it would they have the games during their summer (our winter)?
There is a simple litmus test to determine whether a sport is of Olympic caliber: Does winning a gold medal trump anything else an athlete can do?
Please, please, no Olympics in Chicago...
I bet we see a few South African major leaguers in the next 10 years
Are there any South African minor leaguers at all right now? I think the Royals had a few South Africans a few years ago and they couldn't get past AA.
I'm really rooting for Rio to get it. South America has never hosted, correct?
(Only Boxing, which I believe they are going to change, and Ski-Jumping in the winter olympics, due to Chauvinism that is so bad apparently the Canadian Government is going to get involved, are men-only, to the best of my knowledge)?
A lot of people don't realize this. And it's the media's fault, for not referring to him as "Henricus Vandenhurk".
Olympic baseball is dead to me, thanks to that stupid-ass extra innings rule. If I wanted to watch an event that contained a baseball-like substance, but was markedly inferior due to rules-meddling, the AL stages a bunch every day.
Why not? Take two weeks off, rent out your house and get out of town...profit.
There's more real sport in female jello wrestling than there is in the entire Olympics farce put together. But what else would you expect from an alliance of the world's biggest corporations and the world's most anally retentive government?
Sure, if teams don't mind risking their best players for a meaningless set of exhibition games.
This doesn't seem to be an issue for the NBA or for soccer (and perhaps not the NHL, except I know nothing about the NHL except that that's the sport with ice, so who knows?), so why does it need to be with MLB?
If MLB >>>>> Olympics baseball, why would MLB disrupt its season - and with the MLB schedule, let's face -- there's just no getting around the fact that it would be a real scheduling hassle -- for the Olympics?
As I implied above in the part you didn't choose to respond to, it's all fine with me as long as baseball doesn't mandate participation, and as long as the Yankees hold out their own players. If the Mets want to risk blowing out Santana's arm so that Hugo Chavez can wave a big foam finger to the world, that's their choice.
EDIT: And I really don't wish to see baseball in the Olympics.
bunyon, I've somehow managed to live as happy a life as anyone I've known, and amazingly enough, I've managed to do it without watching one minute of the Olympics. Not every realm of the world is engulfed in overcommercialized hype. As I said, it all comes down to "to each his own," but for my part I'd find the Olympics a lot more appealing if it were run by relatively honest showmen like Don King or Vince McMahon, who don't try to disguise their personal goals behind a smogscreen of rhetoric.
At the park, it's much worse, and of course it's magnified by the cost and the hassle. There's absolutely no comparison between the fan experience of even 20 years ago and the fan experience of today. The 1988 (and earlier) fan experience was infintely superior in all respects other than cuisine. I doubt if you'd find many hardcore baseball fans who attended both versions who'd disagree with that sentiment.
No, there are lots of superior aspects of today's experience, all boiling down to customer service. The parks are nicer, with nicer amenities. Seats are more comfortable and aren't obstructed view. Yes, food.
The only real disadvantages about today's experience are (a) baseball's more popular, which means prices are higher (and, relatedly, it's harder to get seats in a great location), and (b) the &(*^#@^$ noise. And by noise I don't mean crowd noise; I mean the stuff blaring over the speakers. Full time. High volume. If only the PA system was limited to announcing the name of the batter coming to the plate or reliever coming into the game, I'd be thrilled.
Of course they exist, and of course what I'm saying is hyperbolic, but you have to be honest with yourself and make a clear distinction between two sets of athletes.
---the ones you're talking about, who compete in minor sports, and who compete for the sheer love of sport
---and the ones for whom it's all about marketing
The problem with the Olympics is that it's been completely---as in 100%---taken over by the professional, the commercial, and the corporate ethos. This makes it great for couch potatoes who like this sort of thing, and it makes it great for a handful of jocks who can parlay their medals into a lucrative pro contract (or a more lucrative one), and it makes it even better for the corporations, the networks, and the host governments.
What you're essentially saying is that we should just put up with all the surrounding politics, commercialism, and general bullshlt in order to give a few thousand amateur athletes something to live for every four years.
Which is fair enough, since the unanswerable rejoinder to people like me is "you don't have to watch it." And of course I don't. But I will continue to drop in from time to time to admire the Emperor's New Clothes.
Baseball, however, is about the MLB - that's not a slight to the Japanese, Latin American, or other leagues - facts are facts, Major League baseball is the top of the heap. It's simply the league that all the best players in the world aspire towards
Soccer is played once a week, and the summertime is the off-season for most leagues. Summer is also the off-season for the NBA (the WNBA took a month-long Olympic break, not that anyone noticed). Hockey is played three of four times a week, which causes a two-week break to tighten up the NHL schedule a bit, but it's doable.
Baseball is played every day. Every single day (almost). A two-week break means you have to reschedule 12-13 games, or nearly one-tenth of the season, which already stretches seven months (eight, including spring training games).
and (b) the &(*^#@^$ noise. And by noise I don't mean crowd noise; I mean the stuff blaring over the speakers. Full time. High volume. If only the PA system was limited to announcing the name of the batter coming to the plate or reliever coming into the game, I'd be thrilled.
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