Former Major League Baseball Commissioner Fay Vincent penned a fire op-ed in the WSJ slamming the league's decision to pull the All-Star Game out of Georgia over its new voting law:
If you're not fancy like us and don't have a WSJ subscription, here are some choice morsels for you:
- Moving directly to an economic sanction suggests that [current MLB Commissioner] Mr. Manfred believed the Georgia law required drastic intervention. But consider what he didn't do: He didn't limit the number of home games the Atlanta Braves will play. He'd need the approval of the players' union to do that, and Braves owner John Malone would surely resist. To move the site of the All-Star Game is one thing; to ignore union and ownership powers is quite another.
- The midsummer All-Star Game is an exhibition that benefits only the city where it's played. It was reported Tuesday morning that Denver will be the new host. The players will get paid no matter where the game takes place. MLB will get the same television revenue. The only people hurt by Mr. Manfred's decision will be Atlanta's stadium workers and local vendors.
- What is the basis for acting so forcefully against Georgia? If Georgia is racist, how can baseball talk of doing business with China?
- Mr. Manfred failed to spell out specific criticisms of Georgia's voting law. Now he's put himself in the awkward position of having to defend Colorado's voting laws.
- Major League Baseball can't become a weapon in the culture wars, a hostage for one political party or ideology. It can't be only for the rich or the poor, nor can it only be for one race, as it was until 1947. Baseball must always stand above politics and its dark elements of corruption, greed and sordid selfishness. It can't go wrong by standing for national greatness.
Good for Vincent for speaking out.
This was a terrible mistake made by Major League Baseball, and specifically Commissioner Clownfred. Any way you look at it.
And what ended up happening?
- In the name of fighting "racism," they pulled the ASG and the $100M it would have brought to mostly minority Atlanta and moved it to mostly white Denver. To fight racism.
- In the name of protesting the new Georgia voter-ID law, they moved the game to Denver ... which already has voter-ID laws. To protest voter-ID laws.
The subtitle of Vincent's op-ed is The commissioner politicized baseball over a law he likely hadn't examined.
He's right. That's clear.
Live shot of Commissioner Manfred: