Debunking the ‘Bad for Baseball’ Myth


I walked into a sports bar yesterday and was greeted by sportscasters on every channel debating whether Albert Pujols ‘ move to the Angels was bad for baseball, or good for baseball. It kind of baffled me for a bit even though I’m used to the rhetoric used by these broadcasters and journalists anytime anything “big” happens in baseball. Let me solve this problem for you: Pujols leaving St. Louis for Los Angles is not bad for baseball. It’s bad for St. Louis, but it’s good for the Angels. It’s good for the Cubs and Reds, but it’s bad for Oakland and Seattle. We’ve been long past the days of players staying with a team for their entire career. Occasionally it happens…if the team has plenty of money to pay them to stay, or if no one else wants them. But it’s not the norm. 

Pujols owes nothing really to St. Louis. He’s merely an employee in any other businessed based there. He’s given plenty to St. Louis though, namely two World Series Championships in just six years. He gave ten years of his playing career to them. Comparing him to Lebron is just plain ridiculous. I get they are sad to loose him, who wouldn’t be, but it still doesn’t make it bad for baseball. It’s just allowing the man the opportunity to play somewhere different, in a league like the AL that will allow him the opportunity to DH in a few years to finish out his career. He’s not a team hopper. Ten years in St. Louis and a ten year deal in Los Angles tells us that. Don’t slight him for passing up $254 Million. Few players would.

I say this now because in a few short years, Giants fans just may have to deal with the possibility of loosing either Tim Lincecum or Matt Cain. We obviously hope not, but if they did ever choose to leave, it doesn’t meant we bring out the pitchforks.

That said, I’m not saying there aren’t things things that are bad for baseball. In fact, I created a list for you.

  • Steroids (though it could be argued that watching the Home Run races were in fact good for baseball)
  • Milton Bradley & Elijah Dukes (and anyone talented enough to make it to the bigs and throw it away)
  • Scott Cousins (and anyone willing to take out a player to make a name for himself)
  • Hanging out with Charlie Sheen
  • Violence among fans that results in things like the attack on Bryan Stow
  • The Dodgers former owners
  • Crying
  • Lock-outs
  • Playoff expansion (sorry, I’m not on this ship)
  • Jerking players like Brandon Belt around like a Yo-Yo
  • DUIs, Assualts, Wife Beating
  • Cheating and Gambling

I’m sure there are a few more things, but I think we hit the big ones. Pujols leaving a team he’s given ten years of his life to, in a city no one really wants to live in anyway, is not bad for baseball.