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  • Published: Jun 5th, 2013
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on The PED scandal is one more blow to MLB’s credibility

The PED scandal is one more blow to MLB’s credibility

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Major League Baseball has umpires with impaired eyesight refusing to use instant replay.  Even when they do they get the call wrong.  Now the league faces the biggest drug scandal in its history.

 

The league is being run more by the umpire and players’ unions than by team ownership.  Every time the owners have an issue they hide behind the unions as the excuse for not being able to change things.

 

The current collective bargaining agreement provides some fairly stiff penalties for use of PEDs.  However, the league needs to regain the confidence of the public.  The only way to do that is to give the player a 100 game penalty for the first time he fails a test.  The second time he should be banned from the game for life.  That should also prevent him from being considered for the Hall of Fame.

 

The issue of inconsistent umpiring is different.  The line setters can adjust to players being suspended for PED use.  However, they cannot adjust for wildly inconsistent calling of the game.  The interest in any sport is in part due to gambling by the fans.  The first indication of the impact of bad umpiring will be Los Vegas refusing to put lines on some games. 

 

There is a way that the umpires can be brought under control by the owners.  The owners should put the computers to use by showing the position of the pitch on the scoreboard.  If I had a team, I would put up the percentage of correct calls on the board as well.  That should take some of the arrogance out of the Umps.

 

The owners have total control of the scoreboard and should get some guts.  The union will scream but someone needs to show the union who is in control.  But when the league is run by a wimp like Bud Selig, there is little hope for it.

 

 

That’s what I think.  Tell me what you think.

 

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com.  He has also published several novels on and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/.  Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts.  You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits .  

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

 

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Umpires Leave With More Cash in Their Tennis Bag Than the Tennis Players

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Money for NothingSome major athletes have made millions by showcasing their talent in public arenas, leaving matches stuffing loads of cash into their tennis bags. Roger Federer, for instance, is the top paid tennis competitor with about 41.8 million in prize winnings.  Maria Sharapova, Rafael Nadal, Andy Roddick and the Williams sisters have also made a pretty penny  by playing in some of the world’s most prestigious tennis tournaments.  Although the lucky few earn a living that would be hard to spend in a lifetime, the payoff for some athletes is surprisingly small. At Futures tennis events, for example, the players may leave with less than the chair umpires.

The USTA Pro Circuit can easily be compared to the minor leagues of tennis. The circuit is composed of 88 events; “Futures” events with the prize money totaling around $10,000 to $15,000 and “Challenger” events with the total prize money running in the $50,000 to $100,000 range.

Recently, in Vero Beach, Fla. there was a $10,000 futures event where Australian player, John-Patrick Smith won the title over Brazilian, Pedro Zerbini. The crowd consisted of more than 300 tennis fans that each paid either $10 or $20 for their seat.

Smith`s prize money for his title win totaled $1,300 as well his prize money for willing the doubles title which totaled $630 which he split with his partner, American, Benjamin Rogers. Runner- up Zerbini took home $900. Zerbini was participating in Vero Beach for nine days playing eight matches; the breakdown being $100 per day.

Another player, Kriegler Brink earned $200 when he made it to the second round of the singles matches where he lost to Zerbini.

Up and coming American player, Tennys (pronounced “tennis”) Sandgren also made it to the semifinals in this Futures event and raked in a whopping $480.

The players who took place in this event were able to stay at hotels in the area and in some cases can stay for free with local families willing to help out an aspiring athlete. The hotels typically run about $125 per night. In Zerbini`s case, if he did stay in a hotel for the nine days he participated in the tournament , it would have cost him $1125, before tax, which put him at $225 in the hole!

The hotel is only one expense that the players must accept when playing at this event; although the tournament offers lunches, every other meal and expense must come out of the players pocket, so in reality, it costs some, if not all of the players money to compete in this specific event.

Surprising as it may be, however, the umpires and officials working this event may actually leave with more money in their tennis bag than the players. Vero Beach Futures tournament director, Mike Rahaley, was given $4,500 to pay the umpires and officials  (at a tournament at this level there is typically three to five umpires and officials). Not only that but the tournament pays for the official’s room and board fees which ran about $3,000.

Similar to an aspiring actor, a young tennis player trying to make it to the Grand Slams is going to have to sacrifice in more ways than one including accepting these small paychecks.  Despite the small paychecks that don`t even cover their expenses, the motivation is obvious. Leaving with less cash in their tennis bag than they came with is hopefully just a stepping stone to the “major leagues.”

Courtney Sloan is a copywriter and a college student majoring in mass media. As a copywriter with a love of tennis, Courtney has made it her assignment to research tennis news, highlights, products and more and share her findings with the tennis community. 

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Major League Baseball shoots itself in the foot again.

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It’s bad enough if you shoot your friend in the foot. When you intentionally shoot yourself in the foot, you deserve whatever pain results. That is exactly what the pinhead owners of MLB did in signing a new contract with the Umpire’s union without mandating more use of technology for calling balls and strikes.

Until a couple of years ago, the fans were convinced that the umps were blind but recent developments in TV coverage have removed all doubt. Fox and other networks provide a pitch by pitch analysis of the missed calls using computer technology. We can clearly see a ball that is way low being called a strike and a ball just below the letters being called a ball. The union has run the game for years. They have prevented any use of instant replay or other technology that has even been instituted in college football. The reason is simple. The union does not want to allow their dues paying members to look as bad as they are.

The problem is that it doesn’t matter how good the players are, it will be the umpires and their bad calls that will determine as many games in 2010 as they have in the past. Some say that Congress is deaf about what the people want or in the case of the Health Care debacle don’t want. MLB leadership is just as deaf.

By signing a new deal without forcing balls and strikes to be called by technology, MLB has told the fans that it doesn’t care about them or about the game. At some point, the fans are going to have to show the owners that we don’t care about them or their game. That is the only way that things are ever going to get any better.

Your fantasy football doesn’t have to be over. Run a pro football franchise all year long for free at . Tell them Coach Smith sent you.

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits http://fryingpansports.com. He is a regular contributor on Cleveland Sports Radio http://www.sportstalkcleveland.com/ Monday morning at 11. He has also published several novels on

and edits .

Technorati Tags: MLB,Baseball,Umpires,Technology,Calls,Balls and strikes,Union,stupid

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