[Marxism] Baseball: "It's Always About the Yankees" (NYT)

Renato Pompeu renatopompeu at bol.com.br
Wed Jan 4 04:29:12 MST 2006


Why baseball players can't be paid in Cuba? Movie and theater actors are
also not paid?
Thank you for your attention.
Renato
----- Original Message -----
From: "Walter Lippmann" <walterlx at earthlink.net>
To: <marxism at lists.econ.utah.edu>; "CubaNews" <CubaNews at yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Wednesday, January 04, 2006 8:57 AM
Subject: [Marxism] Baseball: "It's Always About the Yankees" (NYT)


> (Cuba has, of course, ripped the ground out from under Washington's
> desperate effort to still further isolate it from world sports by its
> unambiguous public declaration that it wants no money to play baseball.
> What will Bush and his counter-revolutionary Cuban exile militant gang
> of cronies do now to try to prevent Cuban participation?)
> ======================================================================
>
> At the moment, the most serious problem facing the event - the sport's
> first worldwide professional tournament - is the refusal of the
> United States Treasury Department to license Cuba to play in the
> United States. Classic officials have appealed that decision,
> submitting a new application that assures government officials that
> Cuba will not derive any revenue from the tournament.
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Cuba's absence from an international baseball tournament would dilute
> the event's integrity and its legitimacy. Cuba has long dominated
> international amateur tournaments and deserves a seat at the
> international table.
>
> Cuba has taken a step toward getting that seat. In a letter to event
> organizers, the government of Fidel Castro has said it would give any
> money it earned to victims of Hurricane Katrina, putting the baseball
> tournament on a level with previous international events Cuban teams
> have participated in. As a result of that pledge, it is highly likely
> that Cuba will gain admission.
>
> READ Cuba's letter declaring it wants no money to play baseball:
> http://www.granma.cu/ingles/2005/diciembre/vier23/01ccompet.html
> ===================================================================
>
> January 4, 2006
> On Baseball
> It's Always All About the Yankees
> By MURRAY CHASS
>
> FOR Major League Baseball's entry onto the international stage, the
> role of the requisite Ugly Americans is being played by the Yankees.
>
> They have already established themselves as the Ugly Yankees, and
> before the inaugural World Baseball Classic is played in two months,
> they are a good bet to become even uglier.
>
> No surprise there. Any time the Yankees are involved in a joint
> venture, they take a position most advantageous to themselves, often
> at the expense of others. This is the case with the Classic, the
> 16-team tournament that will be played in March.
>
> At the moment, the most serious problem facing the event - the
> sport's first worldwide professional tournament - is the refusal of
> the United States Treasury Department to license Cuba to play in the
> United States. Classic officials have appealed that decision,
> submitting a new application that assures government officials that
> Cuba will not derive any revenue from the tournament.
>
> "We're guardedly optimistic," Bob DuPuy, president of Major League
> Baseball, said of a possible change in the department's stance.
>
> Cuba's absence from an international baseball tournament would dilute
> the event's integrity and its legitimacy. Cuba has long dominated
> international amateur tournaments and deserves a seat at the
> international table.
>
> Cuba has taken a step toward getting that seat. In a letter to event
> organizers, the government of Fidel Castro has said it would give any
> money it earned to victims of Hurricane Katrina, putting the baseball
> tournament on a level with previous international events Cuban teams
> have participated in. As a result of that pledge, it is highly likely
> that Cuba will gain admission.
>
> Not so easily resolved is the problem posed by the Yankees, the only
> team that didn't vote for the Classic. From the start, George
> Steinbrenner didn't want his players in the tournament. If the
> Yankees were to be believed, all of their candidates for the
> tournament were injured.
>
> Steinbrenner was once active in the American Olympic movement, but in
> his view, the March Classic will not benefit the Yankees. What's in
> it for them? An increase in international interest in baseball? An
> increase in international marketing revenue for baseball? The
> Yankees, Steinbrenner would say if he were willing to speak publicly,
> do well enough on their own, generating revenue for themselves.
>
> Steinbrenner's attitude has not been lost on his players. For their
> own stated reasons, Alex Rodriguez, Hideki Matsui, Jorge Posada,
> Mariano Rivera and Randy Johnson have said they will not play. Gary
> Sheffield may still join that crowd.
>
> Four Yankees are set to play - Derek Jeter and Johnny Damon for the
> United States (although Damon was put on the roster before joining
> the Yankees), Bernie Williams for Puerto Rico and Robinson Cano for
> the Dominican Republic. And Rodriguez, who said he couldn't decide
> whether to play for the United States or the Dominican Republic and
> didn't want to insult the one he didn't choose, is expected to
> announce this week that he has changed his mind and will play for the
> United States team.
>
> Matsui, whose snub of Manager Sadaharu Oh was uncharacteristic of
> Japanese players, may yet change his mind, too, and play for Japan,
> though that likelihood is not as strong as Rodriguez's pending
> reversal. Matsui said last week that he would pass up the tournament
> to concentrate all of his efforts on winning a championship with the
> Yankees.
>
> "I fear that chasing two goals might get in the way of that dream,"
> Matsui said in a statement.
>
> His decision was not popular in Japan, and it was not popular with
> the event organizers.
>
> "Every player has a right to play or not to play," Gene Orza, the
> union's chief operating officer, said Monday. "You only hope the
> player who says no has a full understanding of the tournament and the
> consequences of his nonparticipation, especially when it's a player
> who wouldn't be here and who wouldn't have the new contract he has
> but for the association."
>
> The union was instrumental in Matsui's ability to sign with the
> Yankees as a free agent ($21 million), then to be in position to be a
> free agent again after only three years ($52 million).
>
> Rivera was another Yankees player who insulted his country. He said
> he would not play for Panama because Panama didn't have a chance to
> win the tournament.
>
> Roberto Kelly, a former Yankees center fielder, who is the manager of
> the Panamanian team, may want to invoke Rivera's words to inspire his
> underdog players.
>
> Posada will not catch for the Puerto Rican team, though that decision
> could also change. The Puerto Rican baseball federation requested
> Posada's presence, but the Yankees asked Major League Baseball to
> excuse him. Officials in the commissioner's office reviewed the
> Yankees' request and, mistakenly thinking the players union shared
> the view, accepted it.
>
> "We've notified Major League Baseball we may or may not disagree,"
> Orza said.
>
> The Yankees also requested medical exemptions for Carl Pavano and
> Chien-Ming Wang. Insurance costs for Johnson prompted officials to
> excuse him.
>
> The Pavano request was granted, considering he missed the second half
> of last season, but the Wang request is being held up. Wang, a
> Taiwanese pitcher, has agreed to play, pending review of his medical
> circumstances. Wang started five games in September after recovering
> from a shoulder ailment.
>
> Sheffield was a late addition to the United States list, and no
> decision has been made on whether he will play. In this new era of
> international play, it seems that if Steinbrenner objects to his
> players competing for their countries, he could change his style. Let
> other teams sign players from Japan, Taiwan and Panama. And for good
> measure, let other teams sign the best free agents and do not trade
> for All-Star players.
>
> But then the Yankees would be ugly in another way.
>
> * Copyright 2006The New York Times Company
>
>
>
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