Open Letter to MLB Commissioner Bud Selig

 

From the Desk of  Rays Renegade

 January 4, 2011

Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig,
 
I am writing you today to give you some of my MLB fan-based opinions. Hopefully with a few well placed facts and a emotional incentive to possibly charge forward in changing this distrubing “Third World” trend of actions.

I am sorry to say Mr. Commissioner, I am not writing about PED’s, tomorrow’s Baseball Hall of Fame announcement, or even the implimentation of the dreaded salary cap who’s thought might give you horrid nightmares.

I must address this non-democratic situation that I feel we, as a baseball loving Nation have failed our warm breezed cousins to the South. Maybe because I have lived in this country my entire life I am a bit naive to the complexity of the Hispanic community to the South of Florida. But I still think change is needed Mr. Commissioner.
 
It seem that the actions of few corrupt entities within the Southern Hemisphere Hispanic power gird have impoverished so many young ballplayers in the Tropical belt of the Caribbean and South America that want to play professional baseball. It is a land where a single soul can command the intentions and the dreams of hundreds that love to play our national past time, and they just treat them as if they were hired help.

The fact that a  single buscone or ” finder” can manipulate the potential fiscal rewards to a player and circumvent needed revenues to become instant millionaires by preying  and praying on the sweat and blood of young boys yearning to fulfill their baseball dreams of becoming the “next” Roberto Clemente, or David Ortiz. How can the United States of America, one of the biggest and baddest countries on the face of this earth just simply stand back and let a stable of Third World bullies decree which players get a chance, and which are destined to a life of poverty.

Mr. Commissioner, you can become that one authority figure who can bring about change and finally remove the tyranny of the buscones or “finders” forever. You could make another footnote to your MLB legacy that you, Bud Selig as MLB Commissioners helped to first formulate rules, regulations and possibly even establish an outside the United States MLB First Years Player Draft system that would provide players outside the confines of the current system a chance to be recognized and rewarded for their years of hard work.

I am not asking for this in 2011, or even within the next 3 years. I know that you will need the backing of one of the most powerful men in baseball with you. That is why I am also sending a letter to Michael Weiner the current President of the Major League Baseball Players Association asking that both administrative branches of this great sports combine energies to promote, provide and institute future avenues for players outside this country to be treated the same as the North American born players we acquire via our current MLB First Year Player Draft system.

With both the MLB and MLBPA set to begin discussing a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) in the Winter of 2011, this could be a essential sidebar issue that can get more extended revenues within the MLB coffers, plus establish more jobs and positions within that region’s realm of the game. Could be a plus, plus for both side of the CBA coin.

I know that even a preliminary discussion will consuming hours of dialogue, mountains of correspondence, and endless phone calls, but isn’t the overall health and futurue history of our game worth that sweat and struggles? 

The game has evolved so much on the field in the last 25 years, shouldn’t our focus now be on the souls left behind by this progress..Think about it Mr. Commissioner, you can be the savior of millions of future Hispanic baseball players that will be discovered in MLB-sanctioned Baseball Academys set up in the early 2000′s by our favorite MLB teams with the intent to discover new talent, and permanently plug ourselves into a new talent stream.

We saw the first two players from India signed two years ago, and a petite Japanese woman knuckleball pitcher signed to a minor league contracts just last season. Why not give future rising stars in this new World “hot bed of talent” a realistic chance to come on board with respected representation, and loose the stress of wondering if documentation, or even money has changed hands before a single signature is committe to paper.
 
Can you honestly say Commissioner Selig that you have not felt the disgust and embarrassment of the past few years when countless players are found to be illegally obtained by doctored birth certificates, name changes, or simple taking another person’s name for the sake of the game’s paychecks and prestige.

I know that sports agents have been called the leeches of the modern athlete, but they do not suck dry the blood of their clients the way some of these diabolical buscones or even “family” advisers do in parts of the unmanaged MLB world order. Every year more players come clean about the falsifications of their pasts, and we just slap their hands and let them fall back into line.
 
By expelling the human parasites that prey on these players and their families we are ridding society of a deceptive epidemic that needs to be exterminated, eradicated and made extinct.  Mr. Commissioner, you can be the man that will be held up in  the future as the “man who brought baseball and the world together through equality”.

That would be a humanitarian MLB legacy that would transcend anything else you have done as Commissioner of Baseball.
 
You could be remembered in the town of Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic as the man who made fair and equal laws for everyone to play this great game. Major League Baseball has been diligent in the past trying to erase these evils and bring honesty  back to these regions.

When MLB established a MLB-sanctioned home base in the Dominican to combat these false records and documentations,  somehow players still funneled into the country and were exposed later. Underage players were found out and returned to their countries if they had not at least reached the age of 17. Can you imagine spending even a month in a country like the U S  after living in lesser condition in your home country. 
 
Commissioner Selig, you can be the man who can stand proud at the forefront of this revolution to show that we are through with the lies and deceptions, that truth should be the common language, and that players should be rewarded for their talents, not placed like meat in a glass showcase and sold to the highest dolla. 

In closing Commissioner Selig, I ask of you that we finally end this tyranny of the few that prey on the weak and poor who only want to play baseball. By establishing at least a dialogue to begin constructing a World Amateur Draft, we can show the entire world that baseball can overcome more than just money and power, but can improve lives and establish fair play beyond just the baseball diamond.

I know I am only one soul writing to you, but sometimes a single voice in the dark can lead you into the light. If we are to keep moving forward as a sport, we have to take other sports lead on the outside countries rights to fairness and equality.

The best way to show that is to point to the NBA, which drafts players from around the world. If you really want to leave this sport in a manner that future generations will remember your name, then by taking on the equality of the Tropics in regards to baseball related matters might be a giant step for your own immortality.
 
Thank you again Commissioner Selig for your time. I hope to again shake you hand at the Spring Training Grand Slam Dinner again at Tropicana Field in 2011. I am just someone who loves this sport, and only wants to see it grow into a world wide phenomenon.
 

Sincerely Yours,   

Rays Renegade

 

cc:  United States President Barack Obama, Matt Silverman, Presdient of the Tampa Bay Rays Baseball Club, Michael Weiner, Executive Director of the MLBPA.
 

10 Comments

I know that this is a very complicated issue. I remember seeing a show on tv about this subject a couple of years ago, but I cant remember the details. To be honest, I’m going to have to do some more reading about this topic before I can make an informed decision, but thanks for bringing the topic back to the light.
http://wrigleyregular.mlblogs.com/

It would be mice to believe that MLB would have the power to wield a big stick and correct the error of those greedy blood suckers in other parts of the world, unfortunately they can’t control blood suckers at home and wouldn’t MLB then be seen to be taking advantages or just opening the door for more Boras manipulation. More international sports associations can’t even control these environments so MLB would be just treading water till they eventually drown.
In a perfect world this would work great.

MLB Critic
http://mlbcritic.mlblogs.com

NLB Critic,
Every January I send a memo/letter to MLB Commissioner Selig about some concern. This year it was the scavanger’s that prey on the young ballplayers from the Carribean countries.
I understand that MLB will never swing a 34 inch club, but you hope that something can be put into motion to take down the parasites and transgressors before they ruin a potentially greap player’s journey.
I wonder if a guy like Miguel Tejada or even David Ortiz had to pay the piper aka buscones to get their potential chance to get to the MLB. Just sickens me that some really good ballplayer could have missed a chance at normalcyor even a chance at greatness because of the sin of greed.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Russel,
A lot of this same thing was brought out in 2008 or 2009 when the age of a Nationals prospect was discovered that he was not of MLB eligible age, and he was using someone elses name.
Sure the egg was on the face of the MLB club in the long run for not going deeper into solidifying the facts and figures of this young player, but the root of the problem stemmed from the abuseof the system in the Dominician Republic at that time.
More and more players are “late” to Spring Training via VISA or a paperwork inaccuracy that sends off red flags at immigration in either the US or the Dominician.
A lot of work and sweat will have to be endured before it is clear sailing, but when it is, any young kid in the Carribean will great talent will have a better shot to someday step on a MLB field.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Didn’t Selig appoint somebody to police all this? I seem to remember that MLB was supposed to be on the issue, but maybe I’m wrong. Definitely a problem. Did you see the movie “Sugar?” Very enlightening.

http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

Great post! One of the beauties of baseball. If you can throw a ball, you can play!

–Mark Gauthier
http://cubden.mlblogs.com/

Jane,
I know he appointed someone to act as an overseer, but there are not definite rules, regulations or punishments set forth in any writs. So it is like having a guy with a badge standing on the street corner who watches a mugging and can not aprehend the villian because it is out of his reach/jurisdiction.
I have not been able to find a copy of it online yet, but did you see “Chasing 3000″ yet? I will get to see “Sugar” sometime, it is on my bucket list now

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Yeah, seems like there is a lot here that needs to be investigated. Thanks for bringing it to our attention. Knowing is half the battle, and until recently, I didn’t even know.
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

Mark,
That is one of the great thing about the game of baseball. As long as you can hit the ball, throw the ball, catch the ball, the dream can stay alive for soooo long.
I could do all three in college, but for some reason hitting someone with the ball meant more to me at the time (lol).
I even finally saw “Sugar” last night and no understand what happens to so many of the Carribean players who come here foir the dream and end up sometimes with a nightmare end result.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Jeff,
You know me by now. I try and bring stuff up to make you think every once in a while, but I do not have the comedic taste like you And Alan to whip it into a frenzy of mass proportions.
Maybe someday I will get my cocoon and come back as a comedic butterfly. At least my sarcasm is ripe for the picking.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

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