MLB Week in Review (August 9-15)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The MLB owners had a major decision to make this week when they decided who would succeed Bud Selig as the Commissioner of baseball. For more than two decades Bud Selig has ruled over the game of baseball. He has overseen the expansion of the postseason and the introduction of interleague play. His lasting legacy remains to be seen but most likely it will be one of success where the MLB went from a league with constant labour instability to relative calm and plenty of success. The league is still going through a major television boom to help them become a serious player in the major sports league sin North America. Many of that will be attributed to Selig and his time as the head of the league but come January he will give up the seat for a new commissioner that will have to continue to build on the success of recent years. This week the MLB owners decided that the man to replace Selig and try to continue to push the league forward will be Rob Manfred. Manfred is currently serving as the MLB Chief Operations Officer under Selig and has held a position in the MLB since Selig took office. He is a labour lawyer that assisted in the 1994-95 MLB lockout and since then had been a part of the league. After moving up to the COO position in 2013 Manfred continued to be a very valuable member of the executive team in the league. Now he will take over the league he has been a part of for years after learning under Selig for years. It was a decision that really hasn’t caused a lot of stirring in the league. Many times a change of this scale will always provide detractors who believe the wrong decision was made. This time it seems like the loudest voices are the ones saying that this is the right decision for the league. From the start of the process of finding a replacement when Selig announced his retirement it seemed as though Manfred had already been elected by many. The major reason for this was that he was there on the front lines in the last labour negotiations and has seen the league grow from that moment. As a major part of the negotiations Manfred was able to assist in creating a deal that helped MLB players see a rise in salaries while the league was put in a position to increase their revenues. That is exactly what has happened and although a lot of credit will, and deservedly so, go to Selig the fact is Manfred was a major part of it as well. Although Manfred always seemed to be the main choice he is also a choice that is very much a baseball choice. The MLB is not a friend of change as they prefer to keep the status quo for as long as they can. The changes only really come when there is a desperate need for changes and when the fans get loud enough to convince the owners and the league to make a change. The hiring of Manfred will not change this one bit as he represents a choice that the owners are comfortable with. He is a part of the executive group in the league that rose at around the same time with Selig as the head. For that reason Manfred will likely not be making any major changes anytime soon. Expect much of the same from the MLB in the coming years as a new commissioner will not mean a new attitude in the league. In the grand scheme of things that is not necessarily a bad thing. The league has been very successful since the 1994-95 strike that sent the league into the depths of the big four in North America. After that strike the NFL took over as the most powerful league in the region and rocket up to values of over $1 billion. Since the strike the MLB has clawed its way back into second place and has never been stronger as a league. So why not elect someone who is likely going to continue that growth and potentially begin to challenge the NFL as the top league in North America. It was the clear choice and a choice that made sense for the league going forward as come January the MLB will introduce Manfred as the 10th Commissioner of Baseball and look forward to continued growth.


Extra Innings
(More on the week that was in the MLB)

Key Injuries Playing a big role
The MLB is heading into the home stretch of the season with postseason races heating up in every division but for some teams their doors are shutting quicker than they thought as players like Manny Machado for the Orioles are beginning to enter the DL just as races begin

Intriguing LLWS
The Little League World Series is underway and this year there are plenty of stories to follow including one of the best stories in Mo’Ne Davis who has a 70 mph fastball and will be the only girl in the tournament as she tries to lead Pennsylvania to the title

Royals on top
The Detroit Tigers have held on to the division title for the last few years and this year it looked to be the same story but that was not the case this week when the Kansas City Royals overtook the Tigers and hope to take the title from the three-time division champions



Key Scores:
Toronto Blue Jays 6 – 5 Detroit Tigers (19th)
– The Blue Jays played the longest game in franchise history and took the win after 19 innings to keep them in the race for the postseason while the Tigers lost another game falling further out of the division lead

Washington Nationals 7 – 1 New York Mets
– The Nationals continue to build on their lead in the East division as a win against the Mets helped them create a bigger distance between them and the pursuing Atlanta Braves who are hoping to take their division lead back

San Francisco Giants 7 – 1 Chicago White Sox
– The Giants are looking to make up ground after losing the lead in the middle of the season as they may have to fight for a wild card spot as the Dodgers continue to be hot heading into the postseason

Seattle Mariners 7 – 2 Detroit Tigers
– The Mariners came into their series against the Tigers hoping to find their way into a playoff spot against the team that was on top of their division until last week and the win put them into the wild card spot

Next Week:
Milwaukee Brewers vs. Los Angeles Dodgers (Saturday August 16th; 9:10 pm ET)
– Two division leaders face-off looking to build on their leads and trying to show that they can compete with each other as a potential preview to one of the postseason series takes centre stage on Saturday

Atlanta Braves vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (Monday August 18th; 7:05 pm ET)
– The Braves and Pirates are not leading their divisions like they have been used to in the last few years but they both have plenty of time to work their way back as both try to start a run against each other to earn the lead in their division

Seattle Mariners vs. Philadelphia Phillies (Wednesday August 20th; 1:05 pm ET)
– The Mariners are hoping to break a long streak of staying out of the postseason and they should not have a tough time in this small stretch as the Phillies continue to struggle with the Mariners hoping to take advantage and earn a postseason spot

Los Angeles Angels vs. Oakland Athletics (Friday August 22nd; 10:05 ET)
– The Angles are not too far back in the western division race as they are the only competitors to the Athletics who are going into their pivotal series hoping to build their division lead rather than lose it and see the Angels take over

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

  • Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 166 other followers
%d bloggers like this: