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June 18, 1981 - Image 14

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1981-06-18

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have come out of the baseball strike. The folks whose houses border the
baseball parks of the major leagues can finally enjoy a summer weekend
without having fans trample through and toss debris on their property; you
can open your paper without having to read the latest Fernando Valenzuela
story; and, if the strike lasts through July 14, the All-Star game will be
passed over.
I'll bet you never thought that missing the mid-season classic could be an
advantage to the strike, but it is. The way the voting for the game's starters
is conducted is nothing but a shameful affair:
Under the guidance of the Gillette company, the fans of America's favorite
pastime vote for their favorite players by punching holes in a computer card
filled with the names of the game's elite. Not the best players, mind you, but
their favorite players. What this has created is a situation where the players
that take the field at the start of the All-Star game are only the ones with
well-known names, while the guys that are currently playing much better sit
on the bench, or sometimes aren't even there.
Take, for exampie, this year's voting. It certainly isn't surprising that
Reggie Jackson of the New York Yankees leads the voting among the out-
fielders by a comfortable 22,000 votes over second-place Ken Singleton of
Baltimore. After all, Jackson is by far the best-known ballplayer in the coun-
try, thanks to Reggie bars, Reggievision, and the like. Even the people who
don't know much about baseball have heard about Reggie Jackson. So when
an average fan fills out the ballot, Jackson is the first American League out-
fielder to get his hole punched out.
The only trouble is, Jackson is currently batting .199, seventh worst in the

No All-Star game? ...
... a blessing in disguise
league. Not really what you'd call All-Star credentials. And don't think that
Jackson has a slew of home runs that merit his presence on the field of
Cleveland's Memorial Stadium on July 14. The renowned slugger only has'
six round-trippers to date.
An even more disgusting example of the trouble with fan voting comes in
the National League second baseman category, where Los Angeles' Davey
Lopes holds a whopping 132,000 vote lead over Manny Trillo of Philadelphia.
Lopes currently sports a .169 average, second worst in the league to
Chicago's Ivan DeJesus.
Obviously, there are instances where a player is deservedly voted into the
starting line-up, but the cases in which a player is voted in solely based on
popularity warrant a change in the method of selection.
There are several alternatives to the present process, any of which would
be an improvement. The way that the National Football League picks the
Pro Bowl participants is to have the players and coaches do the selecting,
which works fairly well. They might not be entirely impartial, but at least
they are well-informed on the players. If this method of selection was ap-
plied to baseball, the players and managers should only vote for their
league, since those are the only teams they see first-hand.
Another alternative is to have the baseball writers and broadcasters do the
voting. They get to see all of the teams play (in the league the team they
cover plays in), which is certainly more than many fans do. As members of
the media, they are supposedly impartial, at least more so than the players
and coaches.
So until the system is changed, perhaps it's better to skip the All-Star
game. But who knows? With Lopes in the lineup, the American League
might be able to finally win after nine straight losses in the mid-season


The strike .. .
... talks postponed


NEW YORK (AP) - Negotiations to
end the six-day baseball strike were
recessed for 48 hours yesterday after a
two-hour session, in which the parties
never met in the same room, produced
no new proposals.
"After shuttling back and forth, I
suggested to both of them that it would
not serve any purpose to get together
today since neither side had a new
proposal," said federal mediator Ken
Moffett. "If we did get together, an
already deadlocked situation would get
into a worse situation.
"I MADE the suggestion to both sides
that they should leave here today,
rethink their positions, come back here
Friday prepared to go forward, address
the issue and come to an agreement and
conclusion . ."
Moffett, who said he had no feeling
whether any proposals would be

generated by the one-day layoff,
scheduled the meeting for 3 p.m. EDT
Ray Grebey, chief bargainer for the
owners, welcomed the day off from
negotiations. "He asked us to do some
homework, then come back and discuss
the issues," said Grebey. "We view it
as a very positive thing of we wouldn't
have agreed to it."
BOB BOONE of Philadelphia, one of
five players on the union's negotiation
team Wednesday, said the-players ex-
pected the owners to make the next
move. "We feel it's necessary for
ownership to come forward with
something. We've addressed their
problem for equity for lost free-agents
in several different ways and in several
different proposals, but they rejected
every one."


. .. cancellations continue
(AP)-Baseball's strike-the first mid-season walkout of any professional team
athletes-continued through a sixth day yesterday with 13 more games canceled.
That pushed the strike's toll to 76 games lost-39 in the American League and 37
in the National. Eleven more contests will be canceled today, moving the casualty
count of the 1981 walkout past the 86-game level reached at the start of the 1972
season when players struck for 3 days.
Atlanta, Cincinnati and Houston became the final three National League cities to
lose playing dates last night.
The only two teams who have not lost any home games since the strike began are
the Texas Rangers and Chicago White Sox. Both had been scheduled on the road
until Friday, June 19.
.. .Fans' Union formed

Mike Katon Band
516 E. Liberty 944-3330

Playing anyway
George Foster of the Cincinnati Reds
leaves the baseball field at the Univer-
sity of Cincinnati after working out with
a handfull of other Reds and members
of the UCha"eall team Tuesday.

the major league baseball players
strike, a local attorney is taking steps to
organizea national union of fans.
"They (players and owners) forced
us fans into organization," attorney
David H. Kubert said Wednesday, ad-
ding that he had begun the paperwork
necessary to form a non-profit cor-
poration in the state of Pennsylvania.

To be known as the Organized
Baseball Fans of America, the union
would work to guarantee reasonable
ticket prices, adequate security at
games, and even fresh stadium hot
dogs if necessary, said Kubert.
On Tuesday, Kubert filed a federal
lawsuit on behalf of a Philadelphia bus
driver, seeking an end to the players'


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