Going, going, gone?


CBS Sports

On December 2nd, the MLB went into lockout, and after 99 days, a deal has yet to happen which is angering fans.

Justin T., Writer

As the offseason continues, Rob Manfred and the owners continue to ruin the game. For months, baseball fans have been awaiting news of any sort of progress with the Players Association. Has progress been made? Yes, however the offers to the MLBPA are complete jokes.

“I want to play, I love our game, but I know we need to get this CBA right,” Trout tweeted. “Instead of bargaining in good faith, [the] MLB locked us out. Instead of negotiating a fair deal Rob canceled games. Players stand together. For our game, for our fans, and for every player who comes after us. We owe it to the next generation.”

Previously, the MLB had set a deadline of February 28 in order to start the season on time. February 28 has long passed, and yet fans are still waiting on a new deal. More importantly, people are slowly digesting the fact the first two weeks of the season have been postponed. 

“Rob Manfred and MLB’s owners have canceled the start of the season. Players and fans around the world who love baseball are disgusted, but sadly not surprised,” MLBPA said in a statement.

In most people’s eyes, there is one clear problem in baseball. The clown that runs the league, the commissioner Rob Manfred. The reason for this mess, risking the love of the game for fans around the world starts and stops with the man in charge. 

“Manclown and his boys need to figure it out and stop ruining the game of baseball,” tweeted Marcus Stroman

Ever since Manfred took over in 2015, he has made this league worse and worse. He’ll be left with the legacy of adding brainless rules like limiting pitchers to a mere 30 seconds to warm up. Worse yet was the most idiotic move in the history of sports, changing baseballs. All fans love seeing their favorite player send a nuke to deep left field. But fun is not in Manfred’s vocabulary.

His defense: “The only thing I’m prepared to say at this point and time is I do think that we need to see if we can make some changes that give us a more predictable, consistent performance from the baseball,” Manfred told Forbes.

For years, the game went from a pitching dominant performance to the show of the long ball. Thanks to Babe Ruth, baseball fans have fallen in love with the long ball. Seeing players like Giancarlo Stanton and Albert Pujols hit 40+ home runs a year was the main entertainment for fans – except for Rob Manfred, he clearly doesn’t like seeing players show off their power. 

“The biggest concern is that Major League Baseball manipulates the baseballs year in and year out depending on the free agency class, or guys being in an advanced part of their arbitration,” Alonso said. “So I do think that’s a big issue. Maybe if the league didn’t change the baseball, pitchers wouldn’t need to use as much sticky stuff.”

Another mindless act was the new extra inning rules. Before the 2020 season, Manfred and his staff released a new format for extra innings. In an effort to shorten games, he implemented a rule to end the game quicker. At the top of the 10th inning, the player who had the last at-bat in the previous inning started at second base, 

“Manfred also said the runner-on-second in extra innings rule is also much less likely to become a long-term rule post-pandemic,” announced Mark Feinsand. 

The next foolish move made by Manfred was banning foreign substances. In the middle of this past season, the league banned the combination of rosin with sunscreen, spider tack or any other sticky content. Most believed that using the “sticky stuff” was considered cheating and action needed to be taken. On the other hand, these substances provide pitchers better grip and spin on the ball, limiting the possibility of Tommy John surgery. The main issue for players and fans was changing the rule mid-season. Players would not have the time to adapt to pitching without any sort of material. Also, the risk of injury for all pitchers skyrockets without having any sort of substance on the ball. Instead, they are forced to figure out new grips to throw their pitches. 

“No player shall intentionally discolor or damage the ball by rubbing it with soil, rosin, paraffin, licorice, sand-paper, emery-paper or other foreign substance,” reported the MLB.

Lastly, the worst thing Manfred has done during his time as commissioner is how he handled the Houston Astros’ cheating scandal. In the 2017 season, and possibly beyond, the Astros violated baseball’s rules by stealing catchers’ signs. Houston had a camera in center field that zoomed in on pitching signals. Depending on the type of the pitch, someone in the dugout would bang a trashcan a certain number of times. Teams started complaining, and the league began to notice. While there were consequences, Manfred did not punish them to the level they deserved. This team cheated themselves to a World Series and may have stolen a ring from the Los Angeles Dodgers. The general consensus was that much more should have been done. 

“I understand people’s desire to have the players pay a price for what went on here,” Manfred said. “I think if you watch the players, watch their faces when they have to deal with this issue publicly, they have paid a price. To think that they’re skipping down the road into spring training happy, that’s just a mischaracterization of where we are.”

The man gave them grace after cheating for at least one season that ended with a championship. The punishment did not fit the crime. 

“It’s hard to feel like they earned it,” said Justin Turner. 

The game is dying. As days pass, fans continue to lose their love of the game. Manfreds ideas don’t work. As negotiations stretch out, games continue to be canceled, and it’s not leaving a smile on anyone’s face. The solution? Fire Rob Manfred.