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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

MLB Partners Fantasy BB-Yet Pete Rose Is Still Banned For Life

Category: Sports
Posted: 10/07/15 16:11

by Dave Mindeman

The baseball season is over. The playoffs begin. The Twins improved but will have to wait till next year. However, Major League Baseball has some other serious issues to address....and because big money is involved, I'm guessing they won't.

I'm talking about Fantasy Sports. But before I get to the heart of the matter, I want to digress and point out something very hypocritical in the corporate structure that is our national pastime.

And that involves Pete Rose. Pete Rose is the all time hit king. His record continues and nobody has gotten close. But he is not in the Hall of Fame and that is because he committed a big transgression. He gambled on baseball. Never mind that he only bet on his own team and only to win. It still broke the rules that supposedly are meant to protect the "integrity" of the game.

We won't go into steroids and performance enhancing drugs. We won't go into alcohol abuse. Domestic violence. Cheating. Or exploitation of young foreign nationals. We don't have to deal with that right now. Yes, Pete Rose was the culprit worthy of a lifetime ban from baseball, because he was the player that put baseball's integrity in jeopardy.

Given the latest reports on Fantasy Games, the Rose situation almost seems comical. After all, it has been a dirty little secret that no matter how you want to define it, fantasy sports is gambling. People lose enormous sums of money and in the latest scandal, winners used insider trading to cheat.

And lest you think that Major League Baseball will surely crack down on this "integrity" killing scenario, consider this:

Just in time for the 2015 season, MLB expanded an exclusive partnership with DraftKings that includes a co-branded daily fantasy game. DraftKings is also teaming up with individual MLB clubs for promotions at the ballpark.

And after the scandal, this....

Major League Baseball, which owns a stake in DraftKings and has a sponsorship deal with it, said in a statement that it had a policy that "prohibits its own players and employees from participating in fantasy baseball games where money or something of value is at stake, and did not know that the situation was different at DraftKings."

Major League Baseball not only condones this "gambling" venue, they profit from it with an investment stake.

It is getting increasingly difficult for anyone to take that lifetime ban of Pete Rose by Major League Baseball very seriously. Frankly, fantasy sports seems much more dangerous to the integrity of the game than any bets with a bookie. It fools young people into thinking that putting money in an online fantasy league is as harmless as trading baseball cards. And we know that is not true.

Baseball probably won't change its fantasy games policy. There is too much money and TV revenue to generate. But at least they could get rid of the total hypocrisy of punishing Pete Rose for the rest of his life.

Baseball has lost any claim to the "integrity of the game". At least give Pete Rose the recognition he still deserves.
comments (2) permalink

The Ebola Situation Requires Education & Public Confidence

Category: Sports
Posted: 10/03/14 10:41, Edited: 10/03/14 10:43

by Dave Mindeman

I fully realize that the Ebola situation is very concerning, but we also have to look at this with educated eyes and not with fearful ones.

I like this quote from someone on Twitter....

Yes, the ebola virus could spread but not nearly as fast as the rumors of worst case scenarios.

I have been listening to the news reports on the developments and exposures and although I think the 24/7 cycle has a lot of overkill, for the most part the reporting has been responsible.

One thing that is very important is that we are able to trust the Federal government to handle this right. The recent campaign to destroy that trust has been reasonably successful and this could actually be dangerous going forward.

We need to accept what the CDC and other government agencies tell us and more importantly FOLLOW THEIR PROTOCOLS. If we start to act on our own with self analyzed actions, we could put others at risk.

What the Texas officials did at a local press conference undermined confidence in the local responses in Dallas. After Rick Perry gave a general statement, the remaining personell that held the rest of the news conference were "supposedly" the experts meant to deal with the issue.

They were woefully inadequate.

The press had a ton of questions. Only a few were answered and then they scurried off to "more meetings". The local press vented their frustrations by demanding some transparency and full access. None of that happened and I can't imagine that the trust levels for disseminating information was NOT off to a good start.

Frankly, Governor Rick Perry's ability to handle this type of situation should be called into question and his credentials for being President degraded.

The ebola or any other viral disease situation requires education and confidence in public officials.

The CDC has done a very good job so far - Rick Perry, not so much.
comments (0) permalink

Shame On The NFL - Shame On The Whole System

Category: Sports
Posted: 09/14/14 18:42

by Dave Mindeman

I am fed up with the rhetorical bullsh*t from the NFL. Here's what you do.

Ray Rice - (Ravens) Suspended -pending a conviction, banned from football for life.
Ray McDonald (49ers) - Suspended - pending conviction, banned for life.
Adrian Peterson (Vikings) - suspended for a year. Application for reinstatement pending court results. If convicted, banned for life.
Roger Goodell - Fired.
Greg Hardy (Panthers) - has been convicted, so he is banned from football for life.
Jerry Richardson (owner of Panthers) - returns award for domestic assault awareness. Fine of $1 million given to a domestic abuse charity. Suspended for one year.
Steve Bisciotti (owner of Ravens) - Same penalty except he didn't get an award.

New rule. Any NFL player convicted of a felony, banned for life.
New rule. Any owner unwilling to immediately address a personnel problem, suspended for 1 year.

The NFL seems to believe that they are above the law. Above the court of public opinion. That rules do not apply to them.

And they have the gall to dictate the rules of financial agreements that apply to them as exemplified by the Vikings stadium.

This is ridiculous. The NFL is the 1% of the 1% who are wealthy enough to play fantasy football with real players in a real league. And they also believe their fans are mere $$ signs that maintain this obscenity.

NFL football has players who are abused with violent play. They have owners who defraud their fans, their governments, and their cities. They have players who are protected when committing violent crimes. And they have a large portion of a fan base that forgives it all for the sake of keeping their spectator sport going.

It is all too ridiculous for words. And if people are going to be OK with how this is playing out, then shame on them. Shame on the fans, shame on the participants, and shame on the sponsors.
comments (1) permalink
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