A lot of people are getting a lot of things wrong in the world right now.
Since this is the sports page though, probably best to stick to the current events in that domain. And when it comes to sports, absolutely no one is doing things more wrong than Major League Baseball. Let’s wind the clock back to the time when our country was not yet in a pandemic.
Coaches and franchises were getting punished for the 2017 Houston Astros cheating scandal. The story just would not go away as league executives continually mishandled the entire fiasco.
Then spring training began, shifting the focus to the 2020 season. Instead of getting bailed out of the prior predicament another crisis reared its head — the novel coronavirus outbreak. Focus again shifted from setting starting lineups to wondering if the season would go on as planned. Since then we’ve made switch from “if” to “when” and right back around to “if” again. Players and owners simply cannot get together on a plan that would get some semblance of a season constructed. The players were winning the PR battle as of Tuesday afternoon after having told ownership to give a time and place to report so play may begin. Some believe that is bait though as such an order might cause the players’ union to file a grievance against the league for not negotiating in good faith.
When I hear the words “in good faith” I think back to when I sold my second car. OK, really it was my third with my first having been the massive Chevy Astro van and the second was a GMC Jimmy. You might laugh at the van, but I was the unofficial bus driver for me and all my friends waiting to get their own licenses. Anyway, I was selling my third vehicle — a 2001 Mitsubishi Eclipse. I had put the coupe through its paces in the eight or so years that it was mine. When it came time to sell, I had nowhere near the amount of money I needed to fix it up for a buyer, so she went on the market as was. There were dents along the right side from where I had hit a deer and the passenger door only opened from the inside. Yes, the second malady was a direct result of the first. The trunk only opened if you lifted it at the same time the key was turned and it did not support itself. The handy lever near the driver’s seat that was supposed to handle that job was just there for decoration apparently. The air conditioner turned on, but the temperature was not what one desired. Radio and sunroof worked though, and that baby ran like a champ. My first customer came and looked at the mostly operational machine. Having just lost her vehicle to a wreck the buyer was motivated. I took her through the vehicle’s every infirmity top to bottom and front to back. I knew that if I sold that car without full disclosure I would lose sleep at night. To my continued surprise to this day, the buyer maintained their interest and we struck what I believe was a fair deal right then and there. I received my full asking price and also got to tell my coworker who had shown interest in buying the car that it was now gone. Oops.
Let’s circle this wagon back ‘round. I personally do not know if the players or owners are negotiating “in good faith” through all this, but one thing is for certain — this country needs something other than a pandemic and racial tension to turn its attention to. Rather than showing how two different sides can work together to resolve differences, the sport formerly known as America’s pastime seems content to dig its own grave instead.