Donald Fehr, Thank You
Read this piece written by Phil Sheridan in Philadelphia before you read my blog please.
Has it really come to this?
Donald Fehr took over as head the MLBPA almost three decades ago. The men he was appointed to lead saw their income rise by almost 600 percent, he stopped the ownership of his constituents from colluding to keep salaries down, winning a judgement of almost $300 million, fought for and won pension and benefits that are unsurpassed in the modern day working world to name just a few things.
And Mr. Sheridan would have us believe the Don is responsible for the lack of integrity, ethics and morals now prevelant in the game.
It’s Donald Fehr’s fault A-Rod stuck a needle in his ass? It’s Donald Fehr’s fault Manny took a female hormone to regulate his testosterone levels? It’s Donald Fehr’s fault that ‘allegedly’ the greatest players of our generation cheated their asses off because being great was just not enough?
It’s Donald Fehr’s fault that we players stood in front of Congress and either lied our asses off or didn’t ‘speak our minds’ about the catastrophic and illegal conditions we players willingly chose to work within?
It’s Donald Fehrs fault that owners paid salaries to a level that has driven the “common fan” away from the bleachers?
It’s Donald Fehr’s fault that the sports media, like eveyrone else, took the 1997, ’98 seasons at face value, and believed in the huge biceps, skulls and stats as honest and hard working gains?
That ‘saving the game’ during that period of time was anything but stupid men, with insane God-given talent, choosing the wrong path at almost every turn?
So Phil would have us believe that in addition to running the union, he was supposed to visit each player individually and parent them to make the right choices for the good of the game? Isn’t that what parents are for? Isn’t that what society is supposed to do????
We LIVE to give people a second chance. Short of murder (and even then we sometimes are OK with it) and crimes against children is there really anything a human being can do and NOT get a clean slate?
That’s not a bad thing, but it sure as hell isn’t Donald Fehr’s fault that major league ballplayers, GROWN MEN with wives, children, pets and homes (oh, and hundreds of millions of dollars) made stupid and in some cases illegal choices with which to live their lives and perpetuate fraud on the fans.
Donald Fehr did what he was paid to do, and he did it pretty damn good too.
We, the players (well former player here) are the ones completely and totally responsible for the lack of ethics, integrity, and morals so prevelant in sports today. Drugs, spouse abuse, animal abuse, DUI, DWI, vehicular manslaughter, murder, rape, extortion, gambling, last I checked Mr. Fehr had never been accused of any of those crimes, but there are police blotters around the country with athletes names on them.
A name often dismissed in the last 10 years is Rick Helling. Check him out. As someone who played with him I can attest to the fact that he was everything nice anyone could say, and honest to a fault. If more of us had acted on the feelings we had, which he did, things could have been different, things could have changed. We didn’t, and for that our generation, the generation we played in now defined as the “Steroid Era”, got it’s name.
That’s on us, the owners, and the Commissioner, but it sure as hell isn’t on Don Fehr.
Thanks for the hard work Don.