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Game changer? You bet.

February 20, 2009

Important note!!! I wanted to post this link for anyone wanting to help raise money for a very cool charity here in Massachusetts. Thanks in advance to anyone that donates or participates.

When you see a signing like this you can’t help but think where the game must be economically.

Not that we don’t already know it’s just a staggeringly bad time for this country but a signing like this, on this date, is a clear indication of how far things have gone.

Brian Butterfield, in addition to being a dear friend and one of my favorite coaches of all time, knows baseball. When Orlando was first in Toronto I asked Butter about most of their players, often more than once. Over the course of the season Orlando was a guy Butter thought highly of, and as the season went on, that opinion rose.

Described as a defensive ‘game changer’ Orlando brought a swagger and a chatterbox to the field not many young players did. As a pitcher I won’t lie, it was annoying, but the kid played, played hard, and was damn good to boot.

This, and there will be a few others, signing is one that won’t get the ink it should, but could have a very significant impact on the NL West this season. A division that is already very tight can swing with the signing of just one player, especially one of Orlando’s caliber.

12 Comments leave one →
  1. February 20, 2009 8:38 pm

    This is awesome! The people are going to get cheap baseball again! Those $350 dollar seats at Yankee stadium or Fenway will go back down to $75–still well above the early 90’s price of $20. More like the late 90’s price. It’s not like any potential major leaguers are going to become middle managers instead of baseball players because they can only make a million bucks a year now.

    It’s still free to stay home and watch baseball in HD every night of the year. Yes, a family might spend $500 bucks going to a game when times are flush, but when times are tight, it’ll be hard to pack them in even with $20 tickets.

    Once again, yippee to cheap baseball! I might be 40% poorer, but tickets are 60% less. I feel richer already.

  2. February 21, 2009 4:31 pm

    I agree this is a significant signing both because the Dodgers acquired a very talented player and because it reflects the state of our economy.

    This makes the Manny Ramirez situation all the more interesting. I believe its essentially come down to the Economy versus Scott Boras. Which one will win that showdown?

    And how does this affect sports agents in general? Will athletes be shying away from Break the Bank Boras and Rip ’em off Rosenhaus in favor of more conventional, just-get-a-decent-deal-done representation?

  3. NYM2009 permalink
    February 21, 2009 5:12 pm

    Tickets are not gonna be less. Corporate businesses will always be there to buy those seats. And as a fan, I will always attend at least 10 games. They may see less merchandise sales ,but people will still be in the stadiums.

  4. February 21, 2009 5:59 pm

    Curt,

    Not to be off topic but I am going to be for a minute. You are one of the most outspoken Athletes (which is awesome by the way)who really connects with his fans. Have you ever considered using Twitter? I truly believe it is the perfect forum for you to continue to express your opinions while also staying close with your fans! Shaq is currently setting the trend for how athletes can use Twitter to connect with Fans and based on your postings here I think you would also be a trend setter. Just a thought but as a fan I wish you would venture into the Twitter World.

    If you choose to do it then please follow me here: http://www.twitter.com/jeffmello

  5. February 21, 2009 9:35 pm

    Don’t take this the wrong way, I love the O-dawg and as a Jays fan, I was both a) sad that he was traded and b) in awe of his defense on a daily basis during the 2005 season, but Schill, don’t you think that Butter might have a slightly different opinion of O-dawg today? On the whole, I think you’re right though, Dodger fans will be glad they signed Orlando even if all they get out of the deal is to watch him in a few interviews (I’m sure they’ll get more than this) – his contract is a bargain (Jays fans were even quietly grumbling about wanting to get him back).

  6. Chris Walker permalink
    February 22, 2009 12:03 am

    I think its mostly BS I bet the owners make a killing this year seat prices won’t drop TV revenue won’t change but some very good players might be down sizing there portfolio. Oh well it looks like only the really rich get richer.

  7. Chris Duncan permalink
    February 22, 2009 5:36 am

    You think this is bad… My wife’s favorite player David Eckstein is gonna make $850,000.00 this year. Sure he doen’t put up big numbers and is coming off a slow year, but this guy is a few years removed from a World Series MVP and making something like $5.5 million. This would be a great year to bring an expansion team into the league and spend $40 million on players and be a contender.

  8. Richie D permalink
    February 22, 2009 10:12 am

    I dunno Chris. Seat prices may not drop (but I think they will if enough seats stay empty)and TV revenue MAY be affected as large company ads fall by the wayside…..but the middle class guy with 2 kids . How is he gonna take his kids to the ballpark when he’s unemployed and seats are $70 (????) a throw…..a coke is $10 and a transfusion is cheaper than a beer???? The WHOLE economy is hurting and it’s gotta affect baseball somehow someway.
    But I DO agree, the rich will get richer…..cause they’ll make theirs by cutting the little guys that work for them. This years FA’s are only experiencing a TASTE of what the average joe is going through

  9. Rhayader permalink
    February 22, 2009 10:34 am

    I think Drolz brings up an interesting point. I would love to see the game lose a Boras or two. Between announcing A-Rod’s crap during the WORLD SERIES, and having his bluff called over and over with Manny, Boras’ image seems to be suffering a bit. While I don’t expect ticket prices to sink much (if at all), I think the phasing out of the “super-agent” crap is good for the game and good for fans.

  10. bill permalink
    February 22, 2009 1:31 pm

    and you got $8m for nothing last year

  11. Babe Ruth permalink
    February 22, 2009 10:30 pm

    lol at you rich people.

    He’s making more than I did my entire career!!

    ….and Who is he?!?!?

  12. Lindsey permalink
    February 22, 2009 11:01 pm

    Sorry Orlando, we can’t all be Yankees.

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