Bud Selig, knight clown in shining armor

Open Thread: Not A-Rod for a few hours
How will Girardi handle the 2009 lineup?

There is a maritime urban legend about how a captain must go down with his ship. Someone ought to tell Bud Selig that. The MLB Commissioner is no rookie to the game. He owned some of the Milwaukee Braves, bought the Seattle Pilots in 1970 to move them to Wisconsin and has served as commissioner since 1992. While some call his reign revolutionary, I don’t have nearly as high opinion, and the latest Selig news just reinforces that feeling.

In a lengthy interview with Newsday’s Wallace Matthews, Selig attemps to absolve himself of any blame in the PED scandal that baseball has yet to shed. In a completely classless move, Selig blames the players association for stymieing his efforts at securing drug testing in the mid-1990s and claims that he and his advisers felt the bat was to blame for the power explosion ten years ago. “I don’t want to hear the commissioner turned a blind eye to this or he didn’t care about it,” Selig said. “That annoys the you-know-what out of me. You bet I’m sensitive to the criticism. The reason I’m so frustrated is, if you look at our whole body of work, I think we’ve come farther than anyone ever dreamed possible.”

It doesn’t quite work the way Selig would hope. It happened on Bud’s watch; as the head of the game, he has to take responsibility for it. In a way, though, it’s fitting for Selig to say this on the same day as A-Rod‘s press conference. Like or not, these two are baseball’s public face, and every time they open their mouths, they manage to cram their feet down their throats. That is not a comforting thought for fans of the game.

Open Thread: Not A-Rod for a few hours
How will Girardi handle the 2009 lineup?
  • A.D.

    Bud Selig = Joke

    • Mike Pop

      I just don’t get how he thinks he is not to blame for anything. He really doesn’t think that he should be involved in the blame at all?

  • Artist formerly known as ‘The’ Steve

    Sorry Ben, but I disagree with you here. The MLBPA has been the main roadblock every step of the way. Bud couldn’t do anything unless it was collectively bargained for, and Fehr and Orza would have none of hit.

    What did you want him to do exactly?

    • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      But the Union hasn’t been intractable on steroids because they legitimately want access to the drugs and the ability to cheat, they’ve been intractable on steroids because A) testing is a privacy issue and B) they’re a union locked in an adversarial battle with management over wages.

      If the owners were willing to trade other things of value (like, say, instituting a leaguewide DH, for example), the union may have been more amenable to testing. They have been the main roadblock at every turn because that’s the way a union puts itself in a bargaining position to achieve the other goals of its rank-and-file members.

      • JimT

        I don’t disagree with your assessment tommie, however, there are two points that the Union failed to respond to. PEDs are illeagal and most important they pose a health risk to their members. For these reasons thay should have stepped aside and allowed testing. In my opinion is not an issue that should have been colectively bargained.

        Still today the Union is dragging their feet on testing for HGH. Enough, lets get this thing corrected.

      • http://GaryBusey GaryBusey

        So you’re saying that steroids should count as a “bargaining chip” for the MLBPA?

    • steve (different one)

      yeah, he didn’t want to risk concelling the world series. oh wait.

      he’s the commissioner. if he REALLY wanted testing, he could have shoved it through in 1995 when the players were already on strike.

      he is LYING right now when he says he tried to get testing instituted in 1995.

      Selig in 1995:
      “If baseball has a problem, I must say candidly that we were not aware of it. It certainly hasn’t been talked about much.”

      Selig in 2005:

      “I never even heard about it [steroids in baseball]. I ran a team [the Brewers], and nobody was closer to their players. And I never heard any comment from them. It wasn’t until 1998 or ’99 that I heard the discussion…. I don’t know if there were allegations in the early 90s. I never heard them.”

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Selig in 2010, after Pujols and Ortiz are outed as steroid users:

        “I was so against cheating in my beloved sport, I tried to contract the Twins and Marlins out of existence as punishment against those evildoers who wanted to hurt the sanctity of baseball.

        • Mike Pop

          You think Albert used em?

          Also, is there a website where you can check players’ weight at every season of their career?

    • Chris C.

      “Sorry Ben, but I disagree with you here. The MLBPA has been the main roadblock every step of the way.”

      Oh, please!! Selig didn’t “try” to do anything until there was a public and media outcry. Up to that point, he was busy counting the money MLB was bringing in due to the HR contest the cheaters were taking part in. You really think he was “concerned” about the dramatic rise in long balls? Heck, he was busy making sure the baseballs were as tightly wound as possible…..and he certainly had no interest in raising the mound to the height it used to be!!!

      Now, of course the union fought testing……but that was AFTER the cat was out of the bag and Selig felt the need to make token efforts for testing.

      But to this day, if no fans, media members, or gov’t officials cared about steroid use, Selig would be making sure there was a clean box of needles in every clubhouse!

  • RobC

    I got a kick out of the ESPN site story “Selig doesnt want blame for steriods”
    Come on Bud it happened on your watch. No excuses.
    Does he really think the players would have gone on strike over PED testing?
    That would not have looked good.
    Time for Bud’s press conference then lets end it.
    BTW Bud if you read RAB my I offer some suggestions?
    Play-off games week days 7:35pm local time
    weekends 1:35pm local
    no ED drug commercials
    regular season games general admission under 12 y/o 50c

    • Mike Pop

      Bank on it, he will end up reading this.

      I hear he types his name in google every day and looks at every new article he sees.

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Bud Selig is really Mustang. That’s his handle in order to remain anonymous.

        Think about it: the righteous indignation, the reflexiveness over the PED issue, the frequent use of “LOL”… it all fits.

        • Joop


          • Mike Pop

            We got you now, Selig.

    • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      no ED drug commercials
      regular season games general admission under 12 y/o 50c

      A) If anything, baseball needs MORE ED drug commercials, not less. I recommend “Dr. Porkenheimer’s Boner Juice” or “Sproingo”.
      B) If by “50c” you mean “100 (Roman numeral C) 50-cent pieces”, then sure. If you mean 50 cents, wake the hell up. The 1940s are over. They buried FDR and everything.

      • RobC

        I used to go to Phillies games in the 70’s and general admission was 50 cents for kids and yes they were drawing 2 million fans a year then.

        Buried FDR??? I did not even know he was sick!
        I see him every June


        No more ED drugs!
        I can live with G Franco at least that commercial is funny

  • Mike Pop

    I agree with your point. It happened during his era, he should take some of the blame for it. That simple.

  • Thisisthedavid

    Fam at least Bush said he jumped the gun and muffed up Iraq. BUSH FOR COMMISH!!! A real man admits when he is wrong.

    • steve (different one)

      plus Bush never presided over a major league team with a clubhouse absolutely packed with steroid users….oh wait.

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Commissioner Bush: In retrospect, I can sort of understand people questioning why I cancelled the All Star Game and the World Series last year, as well as sold the Oakland Athletics to China, but ultimately we got some bad intel and nobody can be blamed. You don’t run a league with the teams you want, you run a league with the teams you have. I regret nothing and would have done everything the exact same way if given the chance again.

        Also, this notion that I’m about to alter the record books and declare Cap Anson the rightful holder of the career home run record is absolutely ridiculous. Having said that, all options are on the table.

        • Mike Pop

          We have to get rid of this axis of evil that resides in our sport today. I was walking out of Yankee stadium today, looked to my left, there was A-Rod and he sneezed. You like to sneeze at me A-Rod? Well guess what pal, boom your in my axis of evil.

        • http://liberalmusings.wordpress.com Pablo Zevallos

          Bush @ the Union: If you’re not for us, you’re against us.

          Bush @ fans: I abandoned baseball’s principles to save baseball.

          Bush @ press: My job is a decision-making job, and as a result, I make decisions.


          • Mike Pop

            A-Rod, you want to play for the DR and not us here in the USofA? Guess what, you cross me, you know where that gets ya? You got it bud, BAM your in the axis of evil.

            • http://liberalmusings.wordpress.com Pablo Zevallos

              You did a heck of a job, A-Rod.

        • E-ROC

          C’mon now. We’re talking about George W. There is no way in the blue hell that man speaks that eloquently. Keep it real!

    • GoTerpsGo

      He admitted fault? For what?

      • steve (different one)

        the banner.

    • http://liberalmusings.wordpress.com Pablo Zevallos

      You never want to misunderestimate the decider!

  • Rich


    • Fay Vincent’s 1991 memorandum had outlined his intended policy regarding drug use. It included provisions, not only for major league drug testing, but also for minor league and amateur, entry-level players to be subject to unannounced drug testing. Obviously, Vincent wanted to send a strong message to all of those who aspired to eventually play at the major league level. Selig, regrettably, swept Vincent’s memorandum under the rug, refusing to allow anyone or anything to interfere with the owners’ prerogatives in dealing with the MLBPA.

    • Mike Pop

      We need to have a press conference for this guy.

      • E-ROC

        Fo’ sho’!

  • Tom Zig

    Either Bud Selig was completely ignorant to the obvious steroid problem or he willingly let it happen. No matter which way it is, it is unacceptable.

  • Mike Pop

    Some dude said he never heard of “Bolay” or whatever A-Rod said he took. This guy had something to do with BALCO. This isn’t ever going to end.

    • Tom Zig

      Well A-rod did say that bolay is what they call it on the streets of the DR. Perhaps that is why…..

  • http://bigbluepinstripes.blogspot.com/ LB

    Bud should just say he was old and stupid